By Stephen Tsai
When it comes to professions, sports reporters evoke as much sympathy as lawyers and the kiosk people who want to help you lotion away your constipated-wrinkled look. Yep, Pro Bowl week is difficult for reporters who have to go through TSA-like checks, chase around players who don't want to be chased, and then have to take orders from rental guards who say such things as: "Step back … no, I said step back … no, not that far back …" And, nope, reporters shouldn't be pitied because we get to cover one of the best sporting events Hawaii has to offer.
Even without participants from the final-four teams, there were more than enough marquee players. It doesn't even matter that the Pro Bowl provided as much flopping as a Heat-Spurs game. The Pro Bowl is an event in a town that doesn't have many events.
The shortcomings don't matter. That's why the "Lion King" sells out for more than a month despite not having the original Broadway cast. That's why Journey packs the Blaisdell despite Steve Perry not being on lead vocals. In the hanabata days, my uncle took us to see the Globetrotters at the HIC. There was "Sweet Georgia Brown" on the speakers, and confetti in the water bucket but … where was Meadowlark? Where was Curly? I'm not sure that was the real Washington Generals. But for two hours on a Saturday, none of that mattered. We had fun, ate and laughed until our bellies ached, and cherished the memories.
Maybe that's why many will miss the Pro Bowl , at least for a year.
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A long, long time ago, I was at a concert, sitting near a guy who cupped his ears and complained: "Why does it have to be so loud?"
The past two years, I was that guy.
UH football practices were that loud. It wasn't the music, it was the constant yelling.
But this spring, the volume has been turned down. Maybe it's because there's more teaching. Maybe it's because it took that long to impose ground rules such as tightening chinstraps, being punctual, not repeating mistakes. (The best way to keep parents from nagging is to keep your room clean and take out the garbage.)
Coach Norm Chow is correct that this has been the most efficient of his three UH spring practices.
It's also the quietest.
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Click below for videos of yesterday's offense-defense battle:
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How do we know tonight's volleyball match is important?
Assistant coach Milan Zarkovic packed his battle hat for the trip to Malibu: