After years and years of trying to get a new stadium built in various cities, the Raiders have finally pulled it off. Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas looks to be the perfect stadium for the team to play in. The black aesthetic just screams Raiders.
There was some worry it wouldn’t finish on time because of the COVID-19 pandemic but the Raiders’ construction crew has pulled it off and the team opens the stadium on Monday Night Football against the New Orleans Saints.
1. The Raiders Have Nicknamed It ‘The Death Star’
Darth Vader from the Star Wars film series has been a popular costume at Raider games. The team has adopted many things from the movies and people have nicknamed Allegiant Stadium “The Death Star” due to its menacing nature.
“I think it’s a cool name for our stadium,” head coach Jon Gruden said of the nickname recently. “I don’t give a damn about Star Wars. That’s what we’re calling our stadium and I don’t care what anybody else thinks. It’s a cool stadium, it’s a great name and we just have to play good when we’re in there.”
While “The Death Star” nickname is fitting, the stadium looks more like Darth Vader’s helmet.
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2. Stadium Cost $2.02 Billion to Construct
Allegiant Stadium’s construction didn’t come cheaply. According to Mick Akers of the Las Vegas Review-Journal, the Raiders dumped $2.02 billion into the stadium. That’s a lot of money but it’s not even in the same ballpark as SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles, which cost $5 billion to construct.
3. No Fans Will Be Allowed This Year
Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Raiders had sold out every ticket for their first season in Las Vegas, including PSLs. Unfortunately, in early August, owner Mark Davis made the call to not allow fans at games. The same decision was made by almost every other team in the NFL.
It was a brutal decision to make due to all the excitement surrounding the opening of Allegiant Stadium.
“While the current situation is not how any of us envisioned celebrating the opening of Allegiant Stadium, when circumstances permit we look forward to sharing an unparalleled GameDay Experience in the Magnificent Stadium you helped to build,” the team said at the time.
4. Several Construction Workers Tested Positive for COVID-19
The team was able to pull off finishing construction on time but it wasn’t without a number of scares. There were at least 15 workers who tested positive for COVID-19 during the construction of the stadium, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. Despite all of the cases, the Raiders trekked on and were able to finish on time.
There haven’t been any reported deaths due to COVID-19 of any of the construction workers.
5. 2021 Pro Bowl Will Be Played at Allegiant Stadium
The Raiders were supposed to host the NFL Draft this year in Las Vegas. However, COVID-19 led to the event getting canceled and the draft was done virtually. The NFL decided to reward Las Vegas with the 2021 Pro Bowl should it still go on.
Las Vegas appears to be the perfect place to hold a Pro Bowl and it should be a huge success. The Raiders will also be hosting the draft in the future and the Super Bowl coming to Las Vegas is a real possibility.