Casino capital seeks sports team

Even though this Sunday’s NBA All-Star game is being held in Las Vegas for the first time ever, what the casino capital of the world wants is something more permanent; a sports team of their own.

Up until now, the chiefs of America’s big sports have backed away from the city, fearing an association with all that it stands for. However, that may be all about to change.

For one, NBA Commissioner David Stern has essentially told Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman to draft up a proposal to bring an NBA team to his city. This weekend’s All-Star game will provide the perfect opportunity for Goodman to promote the city to owners of the 30 teams.

One of the teams rumoured to make that move are the Sacramento Kings, based in central California and owned by the brothers, Joe and Gavin Maloof. The main reason for that speculation is their link with the city in that they own the Palms Resort & Casino in Las Vegas. They believe that Las Vegas will soon get their wish.

"I think within five years," said Gavin Maloof.

"Certainly within the decade, absolutely. The city has too much going for it. It's very large, there's a lot of money here, there's a huge local population, and they love basketball,” he added.

Nonetheless, despite this theory, the Maloof brothers deny they will make the switch to the Sin City.

Las Vegas, however, is not fussy about who comes to their town. They just want a team to propel the city further.

"I think Las Vegas is the next great world city, and a component part of that has to be a major league team, be it NBA, NHL, baseball or football," said Mayor Oscar Goodman.

"That's what makes great American cities."

It seems only a matter of time before one of America’s sports teams take a gamble on Las Vegas.

Editor, - 2007-02-15 11:10:02

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