There have been plenty of opponents of the planned relocation of the Oakland A’s to Las Vegas, including from likely sources such as Oakland city officials and Nevada educators. But a new and powerful figure has joined that group: Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman (above).
Appearing on the Front Office Sports Today podcast, Goodman had harsh words for the MLB team’s effort to build a new $1.5 billion ballpark along the famed Las Vegas Strip, and believes the team would be better served staying in Oakland.
“They … want to get closer to the Strip with all the congestion and everything,” Goodman says of the team’s plans to build at the current site of the Tropicana Las Vegas resort. “And I thought, ‘This does not make sense.’”
Goodman has advocated instead for a larger site in north Las Vegas for the ballpark. But more broadly, the mayor does not believe the A’s would be a strong fit in Las Vegas, counter to how teams such as the NHL’s Golden Knights have deeply integrated themselves into the local area.
“I personally think [the A’s have] got to figure out a way to stay in Oakland to make their dream come true,” she says.
Even before the mayor’s comments, A’s owner John Fisher already was coming under increased fire for failing to follow through on scheduled plans to release updated renderings of the planned ballpark, or answer other key questions such as whether the facility will have a retractable roof. The nine-acre Tropicana site, while sitting in a prime location near T-Mobile Arena and Allegiant Stadium, is barely larger than the site of Minneapolis’s Target Field, MLB’s smallest facility footprint.
“There are a lot of questions about whether that’s going to fit,” Goodman says of the Tropicana site.
Goodman later issued a public statement seeking to walk back some of her podcast comments, and said, “I want to be clear that I am excited about the prospect of Major League Baseball in Las Vegas, and it very well may be that the Las Vegas A’s will become a reality.”
The Nevada State Education Association has taken a supplemental approach in its long-running opposition to $380 million in planned public funding toward the new ballpark. After facing a prior setback in its efforts to force a November 2024 public vote on the funding, the NSEA is now backing a lawsuit filed in Nevada’s First Judicial District Court, challenging the constitutionality of the funding. The lawsuit will supplement the still-ongoing but uphill referendum effort to get on this fall’s ballot.
“Even though public education and other services are woefully underfunded in Nevada, politicians chose to direct precious tax dollars to a billionaire’s stadium projects,” said one of the plaintiffs, Chris Giunchigliani. “Hopefully this legal challenge will reset the debate.”