Spurs could fight Raiders move to San Antonio, unless they’re cut in on the deal

Now this is getting interesting: Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis may or may not be serious about considering moving his team to San Antonio, but regardless, apparently the city’s existing major pro sports team is agin’ it:

In the wake of Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis’ whirlwind tour of San Antonio, sources with knowledge of the visit said Spurs Sports & Entertainment would be against the Raiders, as they are currently structured, relocating to South Texas…

Spurs shareholder Charlie Amato indicated that SS&E harbors concerns about its long-term financial health should it be forced to compete with another major league franchise for sponsorships, suite sales and ticket sales.

The solution, Amato said, would be for SS&E to have controlling interest in the Raiders or perhaps any other major league franchise that wanted to move to San Antonio.

This could mean just about anything: That the Spurs owners genuinely want to block an NFL franchise from coming to town, that they’re just angling to get a piece of any such team (after all, if the town’s really not big enough for two teams in terms of corporate sponsorships, how would having them both owned by the same people help?), or that Amato is just mouthing off and doesn’t really speak for SS&E. Regardless, it’s potentially a major stumbling block to a Raiders relocation, since if there’s one thing that can contest the political clout of the 800-pound gorilla that is a pro sports team, it’s another 800-pound gorilla.

16 comments on “Spurs could fight Raiders move to San Antonio, unless they’re cut in on the deal

  1. I’ll go with just mouthing off. I don’t doubt that Peter Holt has the clout to block a team, but given that he was along for the Davis tour and quoted initially as supporting this, I think he’s comfortable he’d be able to get a piece and happily co-exist. This guy owns very little of anything and clearly doesn’t understand the situation if he thinks Mark Davis is giving up a controlling interest in the team (if he wanted to, he probably could’ve have gotten an easy billion and probably more from Anschutz or Roski just for the 50ish% he owns.)

  2. I’d find it hard to believe that one league’s team having an agreement that prevents a completely different sports’ team from moving to a city would be considered some type of antitrust violation. So, I’ll assume there is no legal standing for preventing the Raiders from moving to San Antonio.

    This sounds more like the implied threat. Along the lines of…You know, while we love San Antonio (and your money) if another team moves in we would have less of your money since you would want to spend it on the new boys in town. Now those folks up yonder a bit seem to have more money and we wouldn’t compete with anyone else there. Not that we’re looking but the thought of having to compete against another team is making us realize how important it is to be San Antonio’s only major league team and we have to keep it that way.

  3. Wow. Which one is dumber; the owners of the Spurs or Mark Davis. Is San Antonio a one horse town as many nba teams are;portland,memphis,sacramento, and the Spurs think/know this. I think the area could support 2 teams. But if Mark Davis wants to bail on the bay area good riddance lad. Dumber than your daddy; don’t let the door hit you where God split you. After all Mark you could always play at Candlestick.

  4. Aside from being completely stupid these remarks by Spurs co-owner Charlie Amato are erroneous and not based in reality at all. To think that the Spurs would suffer any deleterious repercussions because an NFL team came to San Antonio is ludicrous. The two teams would probably never actually compete directly as the two respective seasons occur during different times of the year. Moreover the presence of another entertainment product such as the Raiders would compel the Spurs organization to maintain their current high level of quality so as to keep fans interested. The Spurs simply want to remain the only show in town because its always been that way and they would like it to continue. Fortunately, San Antonio has grown beyond the boundaries of being a one horse town and is more than capable of supporting multiple major league franchises.

  5. “To think that the Spurs would suffer any deleterious repercussions because an NFL team came to San Antonio is ludicrous.”

    No, not ludicrous at all. In every city where there are multiple teams there is competition for discretionary income. Season overlap means nothing. There’s only a finite amount of money to go around.

  6. Jeff,

    You cannot be serious? You don’t think any NBA box owners or season ticket holders might prefer an NFL box/seats? Or does everyone in SA have unlimited funds?

  7. So in Mark Davis mind San Antonio is as of today his best option, staying put is his second option and LA last. I could see San Diego,St.Louis, or Jacksonville, and even Buffalo moving to LA first and in the eyes of the LA people wanting those teams more than the Raiders. Face it Mark just win baby and you sell out 54,000 seats every game.

  8. “After all Mark you could always play at Candlestick.”
    They’re tearing down Candlestick.

  9. Pauly, don’t know what makes you think the city of Oakland is his second option as in staying put. Report today in the Chronicle states that the city and Raiders have had no discussions about even extending their lease beyond the end of this season. The Raiders are currently on track to be homeless in less than 5 months.

  10. Sorry did not know the stick was being torn down. Still think Davis could go the NFL saying “you know we need a team in the bay area” and the NFL and the city of Oakland could work out a 2-5 year lease. As a fan of the Raiders I would like to see them stay put. However if they don’t put a winning product on the field San Antonio is going to be like the Bridegroom the morning after. Maybe Mark Davis & the new owners of the Bills need to do a wife/err team swap as the Irsays and Rosenblooms did with the Rams & Colts 45 or so years ago.

  11. Dan, I read through those stories. If we take Mark Davis at his word, then he isn’t willing to negotiate a lease extension. But, a new long term lease is still a possibility. If the lease gives him (and the Coliseum City group) a timetable to develop a stadium / housing / retail location at the Coliseum site, so much the better.

    But, you have to believe that if he isn’t willing to entertain a short term extensions, then one of these is likely true,

    1) He thinks an extension would be so easy he can wait
    2) He already knows where the Raiders will play in 2015 and is just waiting to sign the paperwork.
    3) He’s waiting for a substantive offer from Oakland / JPA / County / anyone else who is involved for a long term lease..

    I’d bet on #2 – he already knows where he will be in 2015 and is waiting for the final offer.

    The big question is did Oakland choose the A’s to stay when the signed the long term lease?

    Pauly, sports wife swaps are still owned by Mike Kekich and Fritz Peterson. I can’t believe the 50th anniversary of that passed without the Yankees having some type of “day” for them. Maybe four bobbleheads that can be swapped around?

  12. @JeffM

    “The two teams would probably never actually compete directly as the two respective seasons occur during different times of the year.”

    Uh….I think you need to look at a calendar….

  13. @ALK It’s number 1. You think the OAC would say “no Raiders you can’t play here”?

  14. @ Pauly

    The Rams, Chargers, and Raiders are the only teams free to move. Jags are locked in until 2030 and the Bills lease runs through 2022, supposedly there’s a buyout available in 2019. The NFL is not going to approve the Raiders move to LA. No league approval, no G-4/G-5 money. The Davis family are persona non grata as far as most of the owners are concerned

    The Rams and Chargers in a shared stadium in LA is still the most realistic scenario. Nothing is getting done in St Louis or San Diego.

    Magic’s comments on the Raiders are getting LA Raider fans excited even though there’s not a chance in hell they’ll move to LA.

  15. Mr. Amato is avoiding the obvious (and correct) solution: SSE will have to compete with any other professional franchise in San Antonio when they come (and I’m not suggesting the Raiders will…), just as every other business vying for entertainment dollars has to do when the Spurs season is running. Why must one business be protected from competition? Is this a capitalist system or isn’t it?

    I’d suggest that the article itself errs in accepting the premise of Mr. Amato’s argument: Namely that “something must be done” for the Spurs if another team comes to town. It is a sham argument and must surely be targetted at fools.

  16. I lived and attended school in San Antonio. It’s not really an attractive NFL market when compared to the Bay Area, L.A. or even St. Louis. It just isn’t big enough. Secondly, it’s not going to build a stadium without a substantial public subsidy. San Antonio has already built one boondoggle (the Alamodome).