Given the parameters of the plan submitted by developer Floyd Kephart to Oakland and Alameda County as reported by Matthew Artz, the best chance for the Raiders remaining in Oakland beyond 2015 is if the Carson opportunity falls apart.
As reported in Bay Area News Group publications, Raiders owner Mark Davis would have to sell a 20 percent stake in the team and another $300 million in borrowed funding. No comment from the Raiders, but as experts in the field have noted, it’s almost assuredly not what Davis and Co. had in mind.
The Raiders owner has taken a “wait and see” approach with regard to Kephart and as recently as last week had seen nothing concrete in terms of a cogent plan to keep the Raiders in Oakland.
When Davis does choose to go on the record, it will be interesting to see if the narrative changes with regard to his desire to keep the team in Oakland. The Carson deal, which also includes the San Diego Chargers, remains the most legitimate threat to move the club back to Southern California.
Look for Davis to keep the Raiders on a “parallel track” and retain the public stance of finding a way to remain in Oakland. After all, the Raiders are renovating their Alameda facility, are looking forward to a much-improved product in 2015 and want to sell as many tickets as possible.
But given the city and county’s understandable reluctance to utilize public money for any stadium project, the East Bay’s best hope may be a Southern California scenario that excludes the Raider. That would leave the franchise faced with perhaps another one-year lease while they attempt to find a way other than Kephart to keep the team in Oakland.