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ESPN releases trailer for 30 for 30 film ‘Al Davis vs. the NFL’

Sports documentary detailing NFL’s most notorious rivalry premieres Feb. 4 on ESPN

Pete Rozelle Handing Trophy to Al Davis
Al Davis, Pete Rozelle

Excitement is building for ESPN’s latest 30 for 30 film featuring Raiders legendary owner Al Davis and his infamous legal fight with the NFL — and specifically league commissioner Pete Rozelle.

The film titled Al Davis vs. the NFL premieres on Feb. 4 at 9 p.m. ET but ESPN released their first trailer for it on Wednesday, which you can watch here:

It gets your juices flowing, doesn’t it?

The documentary will focus on Davis’ long-going legal fight with the NFL and his eventual move from Oakland to Los Angeles in the early 1980s. Davis despised Rozelle — and vice versa — which was no secret around the NFL and in the media. Seeing the two share a Super Bowl podium in the early ‘80s mark the NFL’s most chilling lasting images.

“No rivalry, on or off the field, helped shape the modern NFL as much as the decades-long struggle between Al Davis and Pete Rozelle,” director Ken Rodgers (The Two Bills, Elway to Marino) said in a statement.

“With the 2020 Raiders and the NFL collaborating to fulfill Al’s dream of a state-of-the-art stadium for his team, now is the perfect time to look back on two men who differed on many issues, but shared a mutual love of the NFL.”

Davis was a fearless fighter and he did not give a crap if he got in the crosshairs of the league. Davis just wanted to win at everything he did.

I’m old enough to remember the Davis-Rozelle feud. Then, I was young enough not to care about non-football football news. I just wanted to see football. But, as an adult, I can’t wait to learn more about this classic NFL rivalry that went beyond the playing field and into the courtroom.

Read ESPN’s official description of Al Davis vs. the NFL below:

The film traces the relationship from their early clashes in the AFL/NFL wars of the 1960s through their tacit reconciliation upon Rozelle’s retirement in 1989, with a special emphasis on the antitrust lawsuit Al Davis filed against the NFL in 1980. Davis wanted to relocate his legendary team from Oakland to Los Angeles, in pursuit of a state-of-the-art stadium, but the league would not approve. Today, with the Raiders recently completing their inaugural season in Las Vegas in a brand-new stadium, something Davis always dreamed of building himself, the film presents the adversarial relationship between the two visionaries.