The upstart World Football League (1974-1975) made its debut in the Big Apple in Week 2 of the league’s inaugural season of 1974. WFL founder and Commissioner Gary Davidson hoped that his league would become a formidable rival to the NFL, much as the AFL had in the 1960’s. Another model was the World Hockey Association (1972-1979), co-founded by Davidson in 1971, which had already become a thorn in the side of the National Hockey League by challenging the established circuit for top free agents and expansion markets. To be relevant, Davidson needed the WFL to work in major media markets like New York City. But the New York Stars, a franchise given away for free by Davidson to one of his World Hockey Association connections, turned out to be one of the WFL’s biggest misfires.
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