Saturday, October 8, 2011

Raiders owner Al Davis dies at 82

Al Davis, the owner of the Oakland-Los Angeles-Oakland Raiders, has died, ending one of the more remarkable careers in sports _ and sports law. He was a mixture of George Steinbrenner (who was also born on the Fourth of July), Mark Cuban, Charlie Finley and Vince Lombardi -- a coach, owner, businessman, general manager and fan with an insatiable desire for winning. But he was also a little bit Curt Flood (or at least Andy Messersmith) who was willing to take on his fellow owners in court, suing for the right to move his team from Oakland to L.A. and back, as told in this obituary by my AP colleague Josh Dubow, who covers the team.

Davis was also the AFL commissioner before the merger that helped shape the modern NFL. So I ask: Is there another figure who is responsible for as much sports jurisprudence?