- An American sports expert made a strange comparison to football
- He compared the NRL to ‘human cockfights’
- The NRL came to Las Vegas for the first time this weekend
An American sports expert has compared the NRL to “human cockfighting” after football reached American audiences for the first time on Sunday.
The historic double-header at Allegiant Stadium gave American sports fans a glimpse of rugby league, with the Sydney Roosters, Brisbane Broncos, South Sydney Rabbitohs and Manly Sea Eagles on display in Las Vegas.
NRL bosses are excited the US experiment could see “hundreds of millions of dollars” injected into the game, with Peter V’landys seeing the move as a five-year project.
And judging by the reaction on social media, the response to rugby league was mixed on Sunday.
‘Yes, this #NRLVegas is hIt’s fun to watch,” said one fan. ‘Australia It’s wild. Almost anything that moves there can kill you, including rugby.
The American public may need a little time to get used to the NRL
An American sports journalist labeled the sport “human cockfighting” in a live blog.
‘It’s brutal. But I totally agree! That team scored and I have no idea what the rules are, but let’s go.’
Others were more skeptical.
‘Watching how the new rugby league is played in the US on FS1. I really enjoy rugby but I don’t watch it. I played for a year and I still don’t understand the rules. It is an absolutely brutal sport to play and watch.”
It may also take time for the US media to get on board, with one fan pointing out that none of the Las Vegas publications had covered the NRL for the first 25 minutes of the Manly game.
But American sports journalist David Lengel made the most intriguing assessment.
“Okay, I’m told today’s matchup is Souths vs Manly, but at least based on the field markings I saw earlier, it looks like KFC is the home team as their logo is in both end zones,” he wrote on The Guardian Action Live Blog.
There were mixed reactions to the new sport on social media on Sunday.
‘What team is KFC? Assuming they are sea eagles, since they are the closest to chickens. I also learned that distances are marked in meters, not yards, so we already have a problem. Luckily I have an app that can help with this.’
He was also impressed by the physical aspect of the sport.
“ANOTHER player is bleeding,” he wrote after Manly’s Lachlan Croker suffered a cut.
‘This is normal? Croker Lachlan is really beaten up. This is like a human cockfight. But they keep playing! Jesus.’
The Manly game was also moved from Fox Sports 1 to Fox Sports 2 due to a college basketball game going over the schedule, while the American broadcaster referred to the NRL as “Major League Rugby”.