Thursday, May 11, 2017 | 4:46 p.m.
The Las Vegas Raiders might not become a reality until 2021 if the team and the Las Vegas Stadium Authority cannot finish lease negotiations in the next two weeks.
Raiders President Marc Badain confirmed at a Stadium Authority board meeting Thursday that it is a “distinct possibility” the team might not make it to Las Vegas for the 2020 season if NFL owners do not approve the lease at their May 22-23 spring meeting in Chicago.
Badain said he informed Stadium Authority officials following the late March approval by NFL of the Raiders’ application to relocate to Las Vegas that the lease needed to be finished by late May. Board chairman Steve Hill said Thursday he understood the Raiders’ desire at that time, but that Badain reiterated the point to him in a stronger fashion at last month’s NFL draft party in Las Vegas.
Authority and Raiders representatives met throughout the week and resolved a number of items, including lease renewal rights and financial reporting structures.
Badain and Hill both expressed confidence that outstanding issues with the 30-year lease agreement can be solved in the coming days. The board scheduled a special meeting for Thursday, May 18, to leave itself the option to approve the lease. A May 22 meeting was previously scheduled for the board to approve its budget for the upcoming fiscal year.
The Raiders own a lease option to play at the Oakland Coliseum for the 2018 season, but likely will not remain at their longtime home beyond then. Coliseum authority officials want to move on from the Raiders after next year despite owner Mark Davis preferring to remain in Oakland until the team moves to Las Vegas.