Las Vegas Raiders owner Mark Davis, the son of the late Al Davis, is obviously very excited about his team’s new home. Allegiant Stadium, the $1.84 billion facility that is the final result of the former Oakland/Los Angeles/Oakland Raiders’ move to Las Vegas, opened Friday for the team’s first practice there, and Davis was overjoyed.
Of course, that’s no excuse for getting one’s Star Wars history wrong.
“Greetings,” Davis said to his players on Friday. “Welcome to the Death Star, where our opponent’s dreams come to die. My father always said that the greatness of the Raiders is in its future. Well, today, that future really starts. This magnificent stadium was built on the backs of thousands of players, coaches, administrators, and fans, who for the last 60 years have proudly worn the Silver and Black. This is our field of dreams. This is our house. The stadium’s personality will be defined by you, so take pride every time you step on this field wearing these famed black jerseys and silver helmets. You are the Raiders.
“There are many personal accomplishments out here on this field. Someone on this field today will make the first tackle, somebody will score the first touchdown, and somebody will make the first interception, but most importantly, it is what we do as a team. So, I will leave you with three words, ‘Just Win, Baby.” Welcome home.”
Stirring stuff indeed, but as ESPN’s Kevin Seifert pointed out, things never worked out in the end for the guys in charge of the actual Death Star.
A better reference? My vote:
“Welcome to the Sarlacc pit, where you will find a new definition of pain and suffering — as you are slowly digested over 1,000 years.”
Not as catchy, but canonically accurate.
— Kevin Seifert (@SeifertESPN) August 21, 2020
Canonically accurate, indeed. And unfortunately accurate in a football sense, given the franchise’s one playoff appearance since 2003 (a wild-card loss to the Texans at the end of their 2016 season), and two straight losing seasons under head coach Jon Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock. The Raiders are making strides toward being consistently competitive for the first time in a long time, but it behooves the team’s owner to go back through the Star Wars franchise of movies and re-learn what happened to the people in charge of the Death Star… every… single… time.