HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Los Angeles Rams organization is making an assertive effort to bring the NFL back to Hawaii, while also making some fans in the process.
Safety John Johnson III spent his Sunday in Waikiki, participating in paddle boarding and culinary lessons to get a taste of what it’s like to live in Hawaii.
“It’s been awesome,” Johnson said. “It’s so beautiful here. I wouldn’t want to be in any other place. Just to come here, connect and build a relationship with the people here and just have fun.”
The Rams have spent the last few days visiting different parts of Oahu to promote their August 17th NFL preseason game against the Dallas Cowboys at Aloha Stadium.
From donating cleats to football players at Farrington High School to hosting a cheerleading camp and seven-on-seven competition at ‘Iolani, the Rams have made their presence known locally.
The only problem that seems to be surfacing is that other Rams players wish they could be out in Hawaii as well.
“They see all the videos of me having fun and being out in the state enjoying it,” Johnson said. “Hopefully next trip we can get a big group to come and definitely have an impact on all the cities in the areas around.”
Activities aside, just being around local residents in the community has been the highlight of Johnson’s trip thus far.
“The people, honestly,” he said. “Everyone’s nice, everyone has a good spirit and want the best for you. Everyone wants to show you around and wants you to enjoy your time here. The people is the best part.”
As for his paddle board skills, Johnson appears to be natural. But he’s not looking to trade in his day job on the gridiron for a board and paddle just yet.
“I say I’m an athlete, so I can’t let a little paddle board dominate me,” he said. “So I had to dominate it … Being in the water, I don’t really go in the water too often in California -- I probably should -- but just soaking it in and embracing the culture, I’m having fun.”