Las Vegas mayor says A’s move to Nevada ‘does not make sense’
Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman suggested on a sports podcast Tuesday that a plan to build a baseball stadium for the Oakland A’s on the Las Vegas Strip “does not make sense” — comments that she quickly walked back on social media.
In an interview on the podcast Front Office Sports Today, Goodman said that she is not convinced the A’s are coming to Las Vegas, and that the team’s current plan to construct a $1.5 billion stadium at the site of the Tropicana Las Vegas resort doesn’t make sense because of its proximity to the Strip and traffic congestion in the area. The Tropicana is located in unincorporated Clark County, not in the City of Las Vegas.
“I love the people from Oakland, and I think they deserve to have their team,” Goodman said during the interview, blaming the California government for not finding a way to keep the team in Oakland through tax breaks or other avenues. “I personally think [the A’s have] got to figure out a way to stay in Oakland to make their dream come true.”
In a statement issued on X, formerly Twitter, on Tuesday after the interview made headlines, Goodman attempted to clarify her comments and said she wanted to be clear that she is “excited about the prospect of Major League Baseball in Las Vegas,” and it “may be that the A’s will become a reality.”
"My points included that it is my belief that in their perfect world, the ownership of the A's would like to have a new ballpark on the water in Oakland and that the ownership and government there should listen to their great fans and try to make that dream come true," Goodman wrote in the post on X. “Should that fail, Las Vegas has shown that it is a spectacular market for major league sports franchises.”
The 2023 law establishing a $380 million public financing plan for the stadium requires that the A’s construct the stadium on the 35-acre Tropicana site. A week ago, Bally’s Corp., which operates the Tropicana through a lease agreement with Gaming and Leisure Properties, announced plans to close the resort on April 2 to prepare the site for demolition later this year.
Under the structure of the financing deal, the City of Las Vegas has little say over the team’s potential move, and the county will be the municipal government issuing bonds to help pay for stadium construction.
Goodman and her husband, former Mayor Oscar Goodman, have been trying to bring a major league sports team to the city for the past 25 years. In 2022, when the A’s were first exploring sites in Southern Nevada to relocate the team, Goodman got into an online spat with now-former Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf.
During the podcast interview, Goodman said that the city offered at least 60 acres of the Cashman Center north of Downtown Las Vegas for the baseball team to use to build a stadium but the team turned down the offer.
She said she thought the team turned down the offer because the owners wanted to stay in Oakland.
“We went out to reach for them and yet, no, they're going to go out, wanting to get closer to the Strip with all the congestion [and] everything, and I thought, ‘this does not make sense and so why is this happening?,’” Goodman said during the interview. “And then I thought, ‘because they really want to stay in Oakland. They want to be on the water. They have that magnificent dream and yet they can't get it.’”
Representatives from the A’s did not immediately return a request for comment Tuesday.