Raiders Owner Mark Davis Responds to Oakland Lawsuit: 'Meritless and Malicious'

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistDecember 12, 2018

Oakland Raiders owner Mark Davis watches warm ups before an NFL football game against the San Francisco 49ers in Santa Clara, Calif., Thursday, Nov. 1, 2018. (AP Photo/Ben Margot)
Ben Margot/Associated Press

Oakland Raiders principal owner Mark Davis called a federal lawsuit filed against the organization and the NFL by the city of Oakland "meritless and malicious."

On Wednesday, Paul Gutierrez of ESPN.com provided comments from Davis, with Oakland alleging his decision to move the team to Las Vegas in 2020 is illegal.

"My feeling is we're 3-10 and we're still relevant," he said. "It's a legal issue, and I'll let the attorneys make any further comment."

Tim Kawakami of The Athletic reported the Raiders previously stated they wouldn't play the 2019 season in Oakland if the city filed the lawsuit. Gutierrez provided an early list of options for a one-year host city if an early move to Las Vegas isn't possible:

Glendale, Arizona, home of the Cardinals, is another potential landing spot, per Gutierrez.

Oakland city attorney Barbara J. Parker released a statement Tuesday saying the city is seeking to "recover damages" from the Raiders' upcoming move to Las Vegas, including "lost revenue, money that Oakland taxpayers invested in the Raiders and other costs:"

"The defendants brazenly violated federal antitrust law and the league's own policies when they boycotted Oakland as a host city. The Raiders' illegal move lines the pockets of NFL owners and sticks Oakland, its residents, taxpayers and dedicated fans with the bill. The purpose of this lawsuit is to hold the defendants accountable and help to compensate Oakland for the damages the defendants' unlawful actions have caused and will cause to the people of Oakland."

In March, NFL owners voted to approve the Raiders' relocation by a 31-1 margin, with the Miami Dolphins being the only franchise to vote against the measure.

Meanwhile, the team has struggled in what's shaping up to become its final season in Oakland with a 3-10 record that included a five-game midseason losing streak under returning head coach Jon Gruden.

The Raiders announced the firing of general manager Reggie McKenzie on Monday following a 24-21 victory over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

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