The Oakland Raiders are a dictatorship, and like any good dictatorship they are very controlling of what gets out to the media. As a consequence they have some of the most restricted media access in sports. This makes them a pretty unlikely candidate for HBO's Hard Knocks, right? Not so fast.
Dictatorships aren't opposed to press. They love it. As long as that press is into spreading "approved" messages. Al Davis has made it his life's work to build the Raiders image. He has wanted this franchise to be more than just a football team, but an identity and symbol. And, let's face it, the past few years have not been kind to that image. Jump over for the case for Hard Knocks....
The Raiders have an upcoming, energetic team that is led by a charismatic coach. This could be an ideal time to allow a little more coverage. This could be the springboard to lifting the Raiders back to national prominence. These facts will not be missed by Al Davis. He allowed greater access when friendly coaches Jon Gruden and John Madden were at the helm of the pirate ship. Let's see how far he is willing to go with Action Jackson running the show.
So, if HBO is willing to agree to certain "parameters" that would likely revolve around limited camera shots of the dictator himself they may be able to reach an agreement. I am all for it. The more Raiders the better. Of course, for any of this to matter there actually has to be a training camp! Damn you, lockout! What can we do? It's a hard knocks life, for us.
So last year we had Ice Cube five us his Raiders 30 for 30. This year we could have Jay-Z give us a new theme song.
From standin' on the training field boppin'
to flashin' some of the baddest players the NFL has ever seen
For droppin' some of the biggest hits football has ever heard
From the dope spot, with the cleaned clocks
tackles are a murder scene, you know me well
from nightmares of a locked out cell, my only hell
But since when y'all teams know us to fail? naw-uh
Where all my players with the hits and blocks, TD toss
And with Richard Seymour other teams will limp, and what-not
Raiders from the school of the hard knocks, they must not
let outsiders violate thier blocks, and their plot
we'll tear up the league and split it fifty/fifty, uh-huh
Let's take the trophy and stay real jiggy, uh-huh
And sip the Cris' and get pissy-pissy
Throw infinitely like the memory of my man Stabler, baby!
You know it's hell when I come through
The life and times of the Raiders, baby
Super Bowl #4, y'all teamz get ready
It's a Hard Knocks life, for us