Las Vegas has almost everything – nightlife, casinos, world class entertainment, amazing food, haute couture and more. Despite all of that, Sin City is without a professional sports team. Venue proposals and pitches to various sports leagues and teams have come and gone for nearly 20 years, including baseball and hockey bids, but nothing has come to fruition. That could soon change.
Bids to bring a Major League Soccer (MLS) team to Las Vegas began in 2011. A proposal was made for a multi-use stadium in the downtown area that would share space and construction dollars with UNLV, but MLS wanted a venue that was primarily dedicated to its sport. The idea has since been revived and talks started again earlier this year. MLS officials have visited the area and appear to be interested in discussing further. Additionally, it seems as if there is both the backing and the desire needed to have a pro team in Las Vegas, but there is no confirmed deal as of yet.
In a recent interview with USA Today, Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman stated, “[Las Vegas is] the perfect place for people to come and enjoy all the amenities we have, and we’re certainly ready for major league sports. We’ve made so many advances in the medical community and in cultural offerings. Pro sports is the one little piece we haven’t quite gotten the hook around.”
The population of the Las Vegas metro area has grown to nearly two million people, which is more than two metro areas currently home to MLS teams – Columbus, Ohio and Salt Lake City, Utah. Will Las Vegas become home to an MLS team? We’re hopeful, but cannot be sure. However, it is one of the largest cities in the country without a pro sports team.