The Oakland Raiders finally have a home for 2019, and it’s the same one they’ve had since 1995.
The Raiders will officially return to the Oakland Coliseum next season, after the Coliseum Authority board voted to unanimously approve the lease agreement on Friday according to multiple reports. The lease will require the Raiders to pay $7.5 million, plus $750,000 they owe from previous parking fees for next season, according to the San Jose Mercury News. If construction on their new Las Vegas stadium stalls, the Raiders also have the option to play at the Coliseum in 2020, with the rent for that year increasing to $10.5 million.
Friday’s announcement ends a months long odyssey for the Raiders, who have been searching for a home ever since the City of Oakland decided to sue the team over their move to Vegas in December. Owner Mark Davis stated publicly that the lawsuit would mean that the Raiders would play elsewhere in 2019, but every other potential option was ultimately seen as less feasible.
The Raiders came to an agreement to play at the San Francisco Giants’ home of Oracle Park next season, but were halted by the 49ers’ decision to not waive their territorial rights. Levi’s Stadium has always been an option for the Raiders, but Mark Davis has shown little interest in sharing a stadium with the team’s cross-town rival. Rumors that the team would play the 2019 season in Berkeley, San Diego, San Antonio, Birmingham, Tucson, and at a college stadium in Vegas all surfaced, but none proved to be practical.
The Raiders new stadium in Las Vegas is on track to be completed months before the 2020 season.