HBO’s ‘Hard Knocks’ Finally Secures an NFL Team; How Key Figure’s Brain Cancer Impacted the Search

May 29, 2012  •  Post A Comment

HBO, which appeared to struggle to find an NFL team to participate in this year’s edition of “Hard Knocks,” has finally talked someone into it. The pay-cable network announced that the Miami Dolphins will be the focus of the upcoming edition of the show, USA Today reports.

The sports-reality series will consist of five episodes, with the first episode premiering Aug. 7, the story reports. The show, produced by NFL Films, will focus on the Dolphins’ summer training camp and first-year coach Joe Philbin.

“Hard Knocks” sat out 2011 because of the NFL labor dispute.

The New York Post reported last week that the search for a team for the 2012 edition wasn’t going well, noting that the New York Jets, Denver Broncos, Atlanta Falcons, Houston Texans, San Francisco 49ers and Washington Redskins had all said no to HBO.

One problem, the Post reported, was that Steve Sabol, head of NFL Films, has been sidelined with brain cancer. Sabol has been the driving force behind "Hard Knocks" for the 11 years it has been on the air.

A source told the Post, “Without him going out to the teams twisting arms, it’s been hard. Nobody would say ‘no’ to Sabol.”

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