Passan believes no one would be surprised if A's-to-Vegas deal fell apart

Passan believes no one would be surprised if A's-to-Vegas deal fell apart originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area

The saga surrounding the Athletics' potential relocation from Oakland to Las Vegas seems to be never-ending, though the franchise has completed numerous steps to make it a reality.

But while the A's figure out where they'll play in the meantime, with a new Las Vegas ballpark scheduled to be completed by 2028, one MLB insider believes it wouldn't shock anyone if those plans fell through.

"The whole process has been messed up from the start," ESPN's Jeff Passan said Friday on "Pardon the Interruption" when asked if MLB owners had doubts about the move. "Dating back 20 years, them trying to get a stadium in Oakland, failing to do so and now they're going to Vegas, and all of a sudden it's going to be smooth sailing in a city that really hasn't shown any desire to have you.

"The entire thing from the beginning has been a disaster, and if this thing fell apart, it would surprise absolutely nobody."

Despite MLB owners voting unanimously in favor of the A's move in November, Passan noted there are doubts "everywhere" about whether or not it actually will happen. In addition to the vote, the A's also have secured public funding from the Nevada legislature for their new stadium and have plans to construct it on 9 acres of the soon-to-be demolished Tropicana Las Vegas hotel.

Las Vegas mayor Carolyn Goodman, however, said during a recent podcast interview that the A's plans made no sense to her, and she believes they should try to remain in Oakland. She later walked those comments back and stated the city was excited to have the MLB team as part of its growing sports scene.

The A's lease to play at Oakland Coliseum expires after the 2024 MLB season, and while the team has discussed a lease extension with the city, Sutter Health Park in Sacramento reportedly is the front-runner to host the A's from 2025 through 2027.

And while MLB commissioner Rob Manfred has said in recent days he expects the A's to be playing in Vegas by 2028, Passan's comments certainly make it seem like not everyone is as optimistic.