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Pro Bowl moved to Las Vegas for 2020 season

The change ends a four-year run for the annual exhibition game at Camping World Stadium in Orlando.

NFL Pro Bowl Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images

On Tuesday, the NFL announced that the 2021 Pro Bowl (that is, the league’s all-star game following the 2020 season) will be played January 31, 2021 at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas, which is the soon-to-be-opened home of the Las Vegas Raiders.

The move ends the event’s four-year run at Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Florida. Except for the 2015 game — which was held at the University of Phoenix Stadium — the annual exhibition had been hosted by Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, Hawaii since 1979.

Allegiant Stadium has been under consideration to host the next Pro Bowl ever since the summer of 2019 — as reported by the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

“We’ll begin evaluating options for the Pro Bowl beyond 2020 and with new stadiums opening in both Los Angeles and Las Vegas, that could be part of the consideration process,” said Brian McCarthy, vice president of NFL communications.

From the NFL’s perspective, Las Vegas offers many of the same qualities that made Orlando and Honolulu ideal locations for the game, as it is a popular tourist destination with plenty of hotel rooms, entertainment and dining — and easy airline access from all over the country. It is also likely that the league wanted to help compensate Las Vegas for the loss of revenue it suffered when the 2020 NFL Draft became a virtual event due to the coronavirus pandemic.

But whether the 2021 edition of the game will even be played is open to doubt. Should the pandemic force a delay to the beginning of the season, one of the league’s options will be to reschedule games from the opening weeks until after the scheduled end of the season. The league has indicated that cancelling the Pro Bowl (which is played on the weekend between the the conference championship games and the Super Bowl) will be among its options to create room for the rescheduled games.

If it is played as scheduled, we hope that the Kansas City Chiefs players selected for it will be too busy to attend.

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