Super Bowl report: In Las Vegas Sin City, even journalists are infected by a virus
The Super Bowl is a spectacle in itself. In Las Vegas, the show before the NFL grand final takes on completely new characteristics. Even in the media park everyone is going crazy, it's like a rampant virus.
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Las Vegas. It sparkles and sparkles, shines and shines. This does not refer to the legendary area in the heart of the city, where casino after casino and bar after bar line up. The so-called “Radio Row” in the dull, gray, windowless hallways of the Mandalay Bay Resorts Convention Center has adapted to the hustle and bustle of the street under the starry sky.
This is where the heart of the NFL beats the week before the Super Bowl. In the enormous hall are the studios of the most important television channels in the country, from where the mega-event will be broadcast live throughout the entire week of the Super Bowl. In the center, in a gigantic square, the most famous podcasts and radio programs are played. Several flashing slot machines await at the entrance. A little reminder of where all this happens: in the gaming capital of the world.
To be successful in Las Vegas you have to attract attention, stand out, at all costs. It's the same on Radio Row. Here NFL stars are pursued from appointment to appointment and interview to interview. In the moments in between, there is sometimes the possibility of having an unscheduled conversation. If you catch the player's attention.
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Female presenters dress provocatively, male colleagues try to attract attention with shiny Super Bowl chains or oversized caps, the so-called “Noggin Boss.” “I wonder how all the huge journalist egos fit in this room,” says an American journalist, somewhat mockingly, on the escalator leading to Radio Row.
NFL stars shine like the strip
But to keep up with big shows like Kay Adams' “Up and Adams” or former Indianapolis Colts punter of the same name's “The Pat McAfee Show,” lesser-known outlets and their reporters have to reach out. with some.
But compared to the NFL's many sports stars and legends, its attempts at visual extravagance seem almost ridiculous. Players like Cameron Jordan, Stefon Diggs and Sauce Gardner know how to dress. Bling bling on the sunglasses, bling bling around the neck, bling bling on the shoes. As if the huge crowd surrounding the footballers didn't already shout enough: “HELLOOOOO, THERE'S SOMEONE IMPORTANT HERE!”
In the middle of the rectangular lobby with dozens of work tables, one of the mini-studios stands out. Thanks to the big spotlights and the wood-colored cardboard cutout, thanks to the constant mass of spectators, thanks to celebrity guests following a huge horde, and thanks to Cam Newton.
Cam Newton is loud
Newton was once a megastar at the quarterback position. While playing for the Carolina Panthers, he was named MVP and Most Valuable Player of the season in 2015 and led his team to the Super Bowl. He always highlighted his special playing style, in which he often simply jumped over his opponents.
Visually it belongs to the category of birds of paradise, but extravagant would be an understatement. Extraordinary hats, colorful scarves, unique glasses. His huge dreadlocks stand out under his felt hat with peacock feathers. A man with a huge ego, it was not in vain that he celebrated every touchdown with the Superman pose.
Newton produces his “4th & 1” podcast here every day from Radio Row the week before the Super Bowl and has star after star sitting across from each other as guests. Whether it's Emmitt Smith and Warren Sapp, both in the NFL Hall of Fame, or television pundits like Stephen A. Smith and Greg Olsen. Newton is loud. There is shouting, singing, laughter and even dancing. His nature is to attract attention. But he blocks journalists' questions from his program.
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In addition to current and former soccer professionals, stars such as soccer legend Thierry Henry and actors Rob Riggle (SNL), Brian Baumgartner (The Office) and Cristo Fernández (Ted Lasso) are also here. Not even superstar Dwayne Johnson missed the hustle and bustle: even the men's bathroom was closed especially for “The Rock,” so the actor and wrestler could relieve himself in peace.
The NFL world is crazy. Now he comes to what is probably the craziest city in the world to attend the biggest sporting event in the world. Vegas, Sin City, the city of entertainment. Sin and temptation in every corner, glitz and glamour. Even the media world has taken over and is infected.