For quite some time now, owner of the Oakland Raiders Mark Davis had his eyes set on moving the franchise to Las Vegas. While Davis understands the move to Nevada will not only be an emotional one, Davis understands that the Raiders are one of the most supportive fan bases in football. The vote was conducted to see if the Raiders would move, and surely enough 31 out of 32 owners across the nation okayed the move except for Miami Dolphins owner Stephen Ross.
— SportsRoutes (@SportsRoutes) March 27, 2017
So why exactly did Ross vote against the move? Since 2009, after taking a majority of shares of the Dolphins, Ross has been a strong opponent of relocation. Ross has constantly pushed for support of the fans rather than support of generating more revenue.
Ross is one of very few owners who has threatened relocation to try to gain leverage when receiving support for the Dolphins. Even when public funding for the renovation of Hard Rock Stadium (at the time Sun-Life Stadium), Ross spent of half of a billion dollars for renovation of the stadium.
Stephen Ross discusses the Raiders move to Las Vegas.https://t.co/N7mwRqiWVt
— Miami Dolphins (@MiamiDolphins) March 28, 2017
Unfortunately, this issue was strictly business and was surely only done for increase in revenue. In a statement by Ross, he says the discussion was purely based for the fans in Oakland.
“My position today was that we as owners and as a league owe it to the fans to do everything we can to stay in the communities that have supported us until all options have been exhausted” Ross said in a statement Monday at the NFL owners meeting in Phoenix.
While there is much to be gained for NFL owners and even Ross himself from this relocation, there is much respect, along with criticism for Ross. Ross understands the new market horizons, and wider business opportunities. Criticism amongst other executives and owners will continue, but Ross’ name will continue to grow in support for the protection of fans, rather than more money.