I’m taking a brief moment away from talking Lakers here on LSL to discuss some truly sad news from the world of football.
By now you must surely know that Al Davis, the iconic owner of the Raiders, has passed away.
What you might not know is that in addition to my duties here at LSL I’m also the lead writer over at Just Blog Baby. Many of you can relate to my passions for both the Raiders and Lakers as I grew up rooting for both L.A. based teams.
While Davis is revered as a legend for his football mind, many things he did helped to shape professional sports as a whole.
Currently the NBA is stuck in a lockout that has no end in sight. At stake are hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue. It’s safe to say that had Davis not paved the way for the NFL to merge with the AFL that professional sports in this country wouldn’t be nearly as profitable.
Beyond the economics, Davis helped to usher in a new era of race relations by being unafraid to make hirings and personnel moves that were in stark contrast to many of the overwhelming feelings on race during tumultuous times in this great country. In short, guys like Mike Brown can be thankful for opportunities thanks to some of Davis’ philosophies.
Overall Davis was known as a maverick that did things his way. His success gave credence to his many gambles yet it was his innovative approach to the game of football that ultimately earned him the genius label.
Davis admits to adopting his bump and run style of defending from watching John Wooden’s teams at UCLA.
Overall the Raiders and Lakers are two franchises that are among the most iconic in all of sports. While both can boast of great leadership from the top down, only the Raiders can say they’ve had the same ownership structure for nearly 5 decades.
Hopefully those involved in the NBA lockout will take a moment to reflect on all Davis has done to make sports as profitable as they are today. To hear millionaires and billionaires bicker is always unsettling. While labor strife is inherent no matter the profession the hope is that both parties in the current NBA lockout can gain some perspective though the passing of Al Davis.