We have finally woken from the slumber brought on by watching the Super Bowl (the Prince halftime show was much better than the game itself). If you were tuned in to ESPN Asia this morning like we were, you saw, over and over again, the same Allen Iverson “I’m not a gangster” commercial they’ve been playing for two years now — we love AI as much as the next guy, but would have preferred these. You also heard the announcers, over and over, talk about the “one billion viewers” that were tuning in to the game, and, almost as often, you saw them promote this August’s “China Bowl” NFL preseason game in Beijing, featuring the New England Patriots and Seattle Seahawks, on August 8. Here are the details of that game — not much has changed since we last told you about it in September, except now they have a logo (pictured).
Around the sixth or seventh turnover in the game, we were inspired to focus our attention away from the TV. A little internet digging showed us that:
- The domain chinabowl.com has been owned since 2002.
- There are many restaurants named “China Bowl.”
- This will not be the first China Bowl. The first one was in 1945 … in Shanghai:
In Shanghai, 13 hours before the big game in Philadelphia, Army kicked off to Navy in the China Bowl game. It was strictly G.I.: 10,000 uniformed Americans jammed Shanghai’s Canidrome (dog track). Navy won, 12-to-0. That made the day perfect for Navy’s coach, craggy-faced, beaming Lieut. Commander Andrew James (“Swede”) Oberlander, Dartmouth All-America, a football immortal of the golden ’20s.
The Canidrome, which we had no idea was big enough for a football field, was the former home of the Jingwen Flower Market and was blown up in 2005.
- The domain nfl.cn has been owned since 2003 and nfl.com.cn has been owned since 2005. Neither is owned by the NFL.
- The NFL does own this domain: nflchina.com. And more than 12 hours after the completion of the Super Bowl, the site’s front page has no mention of the results of the game. Did you know the NFL has offices on Dongtai Lu?
Only 184 days until China Bowl 2007! Woo hoo!