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Raiders' Antonio Pierce motivated to 'run it back' against Chiefs: 'We've already given the recipe of how to do it'

While much of the football world had its eyes glued to storylines between the Chiefs and 49ers in the lead up to Super Bowl LVIII, the Raiders were focused on an AFC West rival making itself at home at their facility.

The Chiefs used Las Vegas' locker room at Allegiant Stadium for the Super Bowl, adding a dash of red and yellow to the walls and eventually celebrating a second straight Lombardi Trophy there.

It was the latest affront to the Raiders after nearly a decade of Kansas City dominance in the division, but for head coach Antonio Pierce, it's fuel moving forward.

"You know what, it's motivation," he said on Maxx Crosby's The Rush podcast. "Guess who's the last [team] to beat them, though. Who's the last [team] to beat the Chiefs? These dudes. They did that. So it's OK. It's cool. Like I told them, we'll run it back. We'll see them again. They gotta see us, we gotta see them. And we've already given the recipe of how to do it."

The Patrick Mahomes era has not been kind to the Silver and Black. The now three-time Super Bowl Most Valuable Player has gone 10-2 against the Raiders and quarterbacked Kansas City to six of its eight straight division titles.

However, Pierce can still hang his hat on being the last squad to beat the Chiefs during the 2023 season.

Entering Christmas Day with a six-game losing streak against K.C., the Raiders bullied the Chiefs during a 20-14 win in which Las Vegas scored two defensive touchdowns and twice turned Mahomes and Co. over on downs.

As part of gearing up for the rivalry game, Pierce leaned into animosity.

"There's a difference between dislike and hatred," he said. "There's a hatred for the Chiefs. You've got to truly dislike and hate this individual team. We'll be cool now in the offseason. We see them, we're going to shake hands out at a place like this. But between that white lines and the grass, it was on. And these guys did it."

"Hate the color red. We saw red. We hate red. It was on that kind of level," Pierce added about the matchup.

At the time an interim head coach, Pierce showed his team footage ranging from UFC fights to Muhammad Ali closing out boxing matches, something the Raiders had failed to do against the Chiefs a month prior despite opening up a 14-0 lead.

He also borrowed from basketball and the "Bad Boy" Detroit Pistons to get his point across, introducing an ingredient that'll continue to factor into Pierce's Chief-dethroning recipe now that he's the full-time head coach.

"We've got the Jordan rules and what I'm calling from now on as long as I'm here, the Patrick Mahomes rules," Pierce said. "So you remember when Jordan was going through it with the Pistons, all those guys in the '80s before he became Michael Jordan, Air Jordan, the Pistons used to whoop his ass. Any time he came to the hole? Elbows, feeling him, love taps. We touched him. We're in the head, mentally, physically, emotionally, spiritually, I'm touching you. So, I showed those guys Jordan getting his ass whooped."

What resulted was a bruising victory in line with the spirit of the Raiders, one that seemingly had the Chiefs reeling after four losses in their last six games.

It was the height of panic regarding Kansas City's title defense, but much like Jordan did in later years, Mahomes overcame, rattling off six consecutive victories on the way to his third Super Bowl victory while the Raiders watched at 8-9.

Such a response and such sustained success is worthy of Pierce's begrudging respect, even as he looks to build off a slice of success to wrest away the whole AFC West in 2024.

"At the end of the day, you've got to give them their respect," Pierce said. "They've done it now for seven years, man. Three out of four years they're at the Super Bowl. To be honest, we're striving for that."

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