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    Strangest game in NFL history is effectively first Championship contest...

    1932 NFL Championship Game Ticket Stub from The Joe Carr Collection, PSA Authentic. For the first twelve seasons of National Football League action, the title of Champion had been assigned to the team with the best record at the conclusion of the regular season, much in the same way pennant winners were determined in Major League Baseball. But in 1932, the full schedule failed to reveal a single leader, but rather two franchises boasting the same record of six victories and one tie--the Chicago Bears and the Portsmouth Spartans. Thus an extra game was scheduled to break the tie, technically considered another "regular season" event but effectively the first NFL Championship game.

    Chicago's Wrigley Field was to serve as the battleground for this battle, but dangerously frigid conditions forced the battle indoors, into the cramped confines of Chicago Stadium, home of the NHL's Black Hawks and, decades later, the Chicago Bulls of the NBA.

    As any attendee of a hockey or basketball game could attest, a full-sized football field cannot be contained within a standard arena, and thus strange new rules were instituted to compensate for the lost forty yards of length and ten yards of width. Goal posts were repositioned to the backs of the end zones, and the ball was automatically moved back twenty yards every time one team crossed the ten yard line.

    Terrible footing and little room for offenses to operate resulted in a scoreless tie through three quarters, but in the fourth, a touchdown pass from Bears fullback Bronko Nagurski to fellow future Hall of Famer Red Grange ended the deadlock. The nine-to-zero score line was completed when the Spartans fumbled the ball out of their own end zone for a safety. For the third time, the Chicago Bears were NFL Champions.

    Presented is the only known ticket to survive from the 11,198 used for the bizarre December 18, 1932 contest. It derives from the personal collection of NFL president Joe Carr, a thrilling archive of relics from the earliest days of the professional game. The stub presents nearly perfectly, with inconsequential pencil notations on the blank verso. This is almost certainly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for the advanced early football collector. Encapsulated by PSA, Authentic.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    February, 2017
    25th-26th Saturday-Sunday
    Internet/Mail Bids: 12
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,681

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