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Log In / Register | Jul 22, 2018

Raiders Owner Al Davis Dies

Today's Oakland Raider's website

One of the National Football League's most enigmatic franchise owners, Al Davis, died today at the age of 82. The Oakland Raiders website says the Raider family will issue a statement later today.

USA Today describes the Raider's owner:

Davis was once the most powerful owner in the league. He got his clout by using his own abrasive style and sending out his lawyers to the courtroom. Aside from the three Super Bowls, his biggest victory came in 1982 when a six-person jury sided with the Oakland Raiders in their anti-trust suit against the NFL (franchisor). The verdict, upheld when the Supreme Court refused to hear the case, allowed the Raiders to move to Los Angeles without approval by the NFL owners (franchisees).

"It is ludicrous to think that the NFL is a single entity when in reality we are 28 different entities who compete viciously in every conceivable way," said Davis. "We won because the NFL knowingly violated anti-trust laws, losing unanimously on bad faith and unfair dealings."

The Raider's own website declares: "Based on personal achievement, team achievement and contributions to the game, no one has had a more profound and lasting impact on professional football." It describes Davis' six decades in the football industry. For 48 years, he has been involved with the Raiders in which they have had 28 winning seasons, including 16 in a row from 1965 through the 1980 World Championship season. In 34 of those seasons, the Raiders earned a record of .500 or better.

Davis was a force in the dramatic realignment of professional football when two 13-team conferences formed the AFC and NFC in 1970.

As a member of the NFL Management Council’s Executive Committee, Davis has been a factor in achieving collective bargaining agreements between fellow franchisees and their employees, the players.

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