Since his passing in 2011, the Raiders have honored Al Davis by lighting a memorial torch before every game. Though the team is leaving Oakland behind, they will not be stopping that tradition. In fact, they’ve gone even further to honor the man who made the Raiders an iconic franchise.
At Allegiant Stadium, the new Al Davis memorial torch stands much higher and lights brighter.
The torch won’t only be visible to fans in the stadium. The stadium has lanai doors that open up where the torch is and will reveal it to the outside world.
Interestingly enough, the torch is actually the world’s largest 3D-printed object, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal. This torch is a remarkable way to honor one of the most iconic owners in sports history.
Raiders to Hold Training Camp in Nevada
The Raiders have spent the last two decades conducting training camp in Napa, California. The plan was to continue that tradition despite the move to Las Vegas. However, due to COVID-19, things are going to be very different this offseason. According to a memo that NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sent, teams will have to stay at their facilities for training camp:
Based on the medical assessment of current risk factors, we have determined that two adjustments to the planning for 2020 training camps should be made and communicated to all clubs today.
First, all training camps are required to be held at the club facility (which includes your home stadium). The only exception will be if a club can demonstrate, to the satisfaction of a joint NFL-NFLPA medical task force, that it would not be feasible to conduct at their club facility.
Second, in order to mitigate exposure risks, we have agreed that no joint practices will be permitted this year during training camp. We believe that each of these steps will enhance our ability to protect the health and safety of players and your football staffs and are consistent with a sound approach to risk management in the current environment.
This memo means the Raiders will have to hold training camp at their new headquarters in Henderson, Nevada. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. Construction should be complete before late July and the team will have all the tools they need for a successful training camp. That said, general manager Mike Mayock has expressed concern about having players getting distracted by all the fancy new toys they get to play with. Holding in training camp in Napa alleviates those problems. The Raiders are just going to have to make due.
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Raiders in Limbo Thanks to Move
Goodell also recently informed teams that they can have coaches return to practice facilities. Unfortunately for the Raiders, they’ve already moved everything from their Alameda facility and construction of the Henderson HQ is still weeks away from completion.
This could put the Raiders at a disadvantage compared to other teams, but it shouldn’t make a big difference. At this point, the coaching staff has adapted to unique circumstances.