Hawk cemented his standing as an icon within the sport when he turned the primary skater to finish a 900 diploma flip — on the time a seemingly insurmountable problem — on the 1999 X-Video games in San Francisco.
Quickly after he launched the online game “Tony Hawk Professional Skater,” which established one of the crucial well-liked franchises within the medium, producing greater than $1.four billion in gross sales.
Hawk likened skateboarding’s potential affect on the Summer season Video games to snowboarding within the Winter version.
“The viewership just isn’t getting any youthful and it feels a bit stagnant,” he mentioned of the worldwide occasion that takes place each 4 years.
“They want this to get the thrill stage that we’ve at skateboard occasions. I do not assume we’d like their validation as a result of we’re already validated. And I imply actually, what number of extra swimming occasions are you able to watch?”
Skateboarding is one in all 4 sports activities debuting at Tokyo 2020.
Alongside karate, browsing and sport climbing, skateboarding has been included for the primary time, a transparent indication that the Worldwide Olympic Committee has acknowledged the necessity for extra adrenaline fueled, excessive octane occasions that can seize the imaginations of a youthful viewers.
“Skating has actually infiltrated mainstream tradition,” mentioned Hawk, who’s presently the dwell broadcast commentator for the Vans Park Collection.
“It is come on exponentially by way of acceptance and participation and world consciousness.
“There are skate scenes in Afghanistan, Cambodia, Thailand and elements of Africa. I by no means anticipated any of that after I began skating. It was just about in southern California and that was about it.”
Hawk is pleased with the robust sense of neighborhood that’s fostered in skate parks around the globe.
“It is very supportive and really inventive,” he mentioned. “You go to a skate park and see a child making an attempt one thing and abruptly all the opposite skaters rally round him and encourage him. It’s a collective effort for everybody to get higher. The neighborhood embraces you.”
However with 4 gold medals up for grabs — ‘park’ and ‘avenue’ occasions for each men and women — Hawk is beneath no illusions that the perfect skaters on this planet will convey a pointy aggressive edge to the Video games.
The specter of controversy looms, nonetheless. Like determine skating or diving, winners and losers shall be decided by the subjective opinions of a panel of judges. Is Hawk involved by prospect of contentious choices?
“I do not assume so,” Hawk mentioned. “Skating is somewhat bit looser by way of the way you decide creativity and technicality. I’ve religion.”