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Why the agree Bowl go HawaiiBy Locke PeterseimSpecial to page 2

It"s not simple for NFL players, coaches, and also sports media folk, having actually to trudge every the way down to Honolulu every February for the agree Bowl. They need to put up v the sun, the beaches, the poi, and, the course, the unpreventable "Wanna gain lei-ed?" and "Book "em, Danno!" jokes.

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A pilgrimage to the agree Bowl in Hawaii deserve to take the edge off NFL tough guys favor Raiders coach Jon Gruden, pictured through his son, Jon II.

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So why Hawaii? Why experience such hardship simply for one all-star game? Why travel much more than 2,300 mile to a location that wasn"t even a state until someone determined in 1959 that American men"s shirts were sorely lacking in gaily colored flowers and also so something have to be done? (That"s right: the 1941 strike on Pearl port did not technically take place in the united States. However, "Blue Hawaii," Elvis" 1960 strike on Angela Lansbury and cinematic taste, did.)

The postseason NFL all-star game began in 1939, when the new York Giants -- who had lost 27-0 come the Packers in the NFL championship game -- played a team of all-stars consisting of NFL players and standouts native independent West shore pro teams. (In the 1930s, numerous pro leagues had formed in California but had easily fallen apart. Through 1939, the huge attractions the end West to be the Los Angeles Bulldogs and independent player Kenny Washington, the previous UCLA All-America tailback and teammate that Jackie Robinson. The NFL had actually banned Washington for his failure to be Caucasian, though later on he would join the NFL the year before Robinson would break the color obstacle in major League Baseball.)

That first version of the agree Bowl, which was short-lived (ending in 1942), was played in South main L.A., in ~ the other Wrigley Field, the residence of chewing-gum emperor william Wrigley"s Pacific coastline League Angels, which to be modeled under to the ivy-covered outfield wall after the "Friendly Confines" a pair thousand mile to the east.

The pro Bowl went back in 1951, this time together a matchup between the NFL"s American and also National Conferences, renamed the Eastern and also Western Conferences in 1954. Adhering to tradition, the agree Bowl games between 1951 and also 1970 to be played at Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles.

The merger of the NFL and AFL in 1970 ushered in the contemporary era of pro Bowls. The game was play in Los Angeles indigenous 1971 come 1973, and also then drifted approximately the country for a while, preventing winter wonderlands prefer Buffalo and Green Bay for milder clime such together Tampa, new Orleans, Miami, and Dallas.

In 1980, Hawaii to be giddy about its role as the original host of the superstar competition, but realized the to be important American, it needed a meaningless NFL game. So, the plucky young state (just rotate 21!) wooed the NFL v leis and also Jack lord in a Speedo, and got the agree Bowl the same year the "Magnum, P.I." debuted. Hawaii"s tourism officials certain earned their poi the year.

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And there the pro Bowl has actually remained because that 22 years. Will certainly it be forever? Maybe. The Hawaii travel Authority payment the NFL $19.5 million to organize the video game from 2002 to 2005, yet Orlando bid to hold the game during the 1990s, and will likely do for this reason again.

"Closer Look" will be a continuous Page 2 feature, trying out a hot sports subject in greater detail. Locke Peterseim is a contributing editor at Britannica.com. He has actually never been to Hawaii, however he has watched numerous episodes of "Hawaii Five-0."