Mark Davis forced to choose between the Raiders and the Aces: 'It makes no sense'

·Writer
·3-min read

Mark Davis doesn’t think he should have to choose.

It’s a very, very tough decision the Las Vegas Raiders and Aces owner is facing, too.

The Aces are set to host Game 1 of the WNBA Finals on Sunday afternoon following their win over the Seattle Storm. It will mark their second finals appearance in franchise history, and the first since relocating to Las Vegas and Davis took over as the owner.

But, just about 90 minutes after that game tips off, the Raiders will take on the Los Angeles Chargers at SoFi Stadium in Inglewood, California.

Logistically, there’s absolutely no way Davis could be at both games. He has to choose one.

“I’m like a single parent that has two children I love very, very much and it’s deciding which child do you go to see,” Davis said, via USA Today.

Davis said he will be in Los Angeles for the Raiders’ game on Sunday. As it’s their first with a new coach, and he knows his family and friends will be around in Las Vegas for the Aces game, he figured that was the best move.

This may not be the only time Davis has to deal with that decision, too.

Game 4 of the WNBA Finals, if necessary, is scheduled for next Sunday afternoon in Connecticut. The Raiders are set to host the Arizona Cardinals that same afternoon.

Again, there’s no way that Davis could attend both.

“I will most definitely be at the Aces game at that point, because it would be a deciding game,” Davis said, via USA Today. “If it’s a deciding game, I absolutely have to be there, whether it’s for the Aces to win it all or not. The fact [Game 1 is] at home, it made this a little easier to make this decision. But it’s not easy.

“It’s absolutely a tough decision because I want to make this clear: The Aces are not a hobby. It’s a real deal for me.”

Why is the WNBA competing with the NFL?

That’s the question Davis is asking, and he doesn’t get it.

“It makes no sense,” Davis said, via USA Today. “It doesn’t make any sense.”

He’s got a point. Going up against the NFL, which is the most popular sport in the country and frequently dominates viewership ratings, is almost always a losing battle.

The WNBA has been pushing for a bigger media rights deal and is rapidly growing. The league has produced incredible ratings in recent years, too. This season alone was the most-watched regular season in 14 years, and last year’s finals were the most-watched since 2017.

Trying to get people to watch when the NFL is playing, Davis said, doesn’t make any sense.

"We don’t have the eyeballs. Well how in the hell are you going to get eyeballs when you’re going up against the opening day of the National Football League?” Davis asked, via USA Today. “That part is tough.

“We have the greatest athletes in the world at what they do. We need people to invest in the game … If we invest in the product, it will come back to us in multiples.”

Las Vegas Raiders and Aces owner Mark Davis
With the Aces in the WNBA Finals and the Raiders kicking off their season on Sunday, owner Mark Davis is faced with an impossible decision — one he doesn't think is fair. (Ethan Miller/Getty Images)