Las Vegas Sun

March 18, 2018

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Could Las Vegas host the NFL Draft?


Matt Rourke / AP

Philadelphia Eagles’ fans cheer during the second round of the 2017 NFL football draft, Friday, April 28, 2017, in Philadelphia.

Updated Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018 | 5:26 p.m.

Now that Las Vegas has a NFL franchise, it could be in line to host one of the league’s marquee events.

Las Vegas is a finalist to host the NFL Draft in 2019 or 2020. Other finalists include: Cleveland/Canton, Tennessee, Kansas City and Denver.

Las Vegas will learn its fate in May during league meetings, according to reports. The league had long hosted the draft in New York but has recently shifted the spring event to major metros such as Chicago and Philadelphia.

We, of course, will become an NFL city in 2020 when the Raiders relocate here from Oakland to play in a new $1.9 billion stadium near the Strip.

Even being in contention to host the draft is significant for the city and Raiders ahead of the team's arrival. Raiders president Marc Badain they would immediately get working on their pitch.

“It’s absolutely exciting for the community and we have our work cut out for us to host the draft,” Badain said. “We’ll have to put together a very good bid package together and we’ll hopefully get rewarded.”

Part of the is package includes meeting hotel room, volunteer, and venue requirements, among other aspects that will show the city has the ability to host.

“They (the NFL) has one of the best events departments in the world and they’ve done a lot of these events and held the drafts at multiple locations and they’ve seen what’s worked and what they’re looking for a community,” he said.

Badain thinks Las Vegas has an edge in comparison to the other cities in contention because it is a notable visitor destination.

“This city is built those types of event and people love coming here for any reason,” he said. “It will give football fans just not form one community but all 30 cities — all 32 teams — a chance to come here and give them another reason to come here… be here for three or four days. I think it would be spectacular.”

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