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    As Gunshots Rang Out, Super Bowl Parade in Kansas City Dissolved Into Chaos

    The parade on Wednesday to celebrate the Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl victory brought hundreds of thousands of people to the city’s streets, a sea of fans clad in the team’s trademark red.But when gunfire began near Union Station, a downtown transit center and tourist hub, around 2 p.m. local time, chaos erupted. Many attendees said it was hard to know where to go.At first, the shots sounded like fireworks, said Ian Johnson, who had been selling hot dogs near the main event stage. Only when fans started running — some of them took shelter under his hot dog tent — did he realize that a shooting was underway.Courtney Brown, of Independence, Mo., and her two sons were also near the stage when the gunfire began. She didn’t hear shots, she said. But she did hear someone shout: “Get down.”Her instincts told her to flee, so she told her children to keep moving. “We were almost trampled twice,” she said. The three of them locked arms and huddled near a barricade until the crush of the crowd had eased.Adrian Robinson had traveled to Kansas City from Gary, Ind., to sell T-shirts. He heard what he thought was a few firecrackers popping, and then he saw hundreds of people running down the street. A minute later, the same people were running back in the opposite direction.Christopher Smith for The New York TimesDominick Williams for The New York Times“People were traumatized, man” Mr. Robinson said. “They were crying. Hyperventilating.”The police said that they had detained three people after the shooting. But as the crowds began to disperse, some parade attendees were left stranded.Zachary Dial and his family had traveled from Richmond, Mo., and parked in a garage by Union Station. A few hours after the parade was over, their car was still off limits, stuck behind crime scene tape, he said.Quinton Lucas, the mayor of Kansas City, had also been downtown for the celebration. “I was there with my wife; I was there with my mother,” he said at a news conference on Wednesday afternoon.“We never would have thought that we, along with Chiefs players, along with fans, hundreds of thousands of people, would be forced to run for our safety today.”Traci Angel More

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    Super Bowl Viewership Rose to 123.4 Million, a Record High

    The figure easily exceeded last year’s 115.1 million, capping off a big year for N.F.L. ratings.Sunday night’s overtime Super Bowl shattered ratings records.An audience of 123.4 million watched the Kansas City Chiefs beat the San Francisco 49ers, according to preliminary figures from Nielsen and CBS, which broadcast the game. That figure easily eclipsed last year’s record high of 115.1 million, when Kansas City defeated the Philadelphia Eagles. Final Nielsen ratings for the Super Bowl will be issued on Tuesday,The figure is the total who watched on CBS, the Paramount+ streaming app, the Spanish-language channel Univision, N.F.L. digital channels or Nickelodeon, which aired a child-friendly telecast. The vast majority watched the game on CBS, which recorded 120 million viewers, according to Nielsen. The game had a lot going for it. It went into overtime, concluded with a game-winning touchdown pass (for a 25-22 final score) and featured an elite Kansas City team with a superstar quarterback, Patrick Mahomes. Travis Kelce, Kansas City’s starting tight end, also happens to be dating a megastar in Taylor Swift, who attended the game in Las Vegas.At a moment when traditional television ratings have been in free fall, the N.F.L., particularly the Super Bowl, has stood immune to massive viewership changes affecting the rest of the media world. Thirteen of the last 15 Super Bowls have drawn more than 100 million viewers, according to Nielsen, a bigger audience than in earlier decades.Sunday’s performance also capped off a big year for N.F.L. ratings.Viewership was up 7 percent, according to Nielsen, falling just shy of the record set in 2015. Several playoff games set ratings records, including the A.F.C. championship game on CBS, which scored more than 55 million viewers, and an A.F.C. divisional playoff game that drew more than 50 million. The N.F.C. championship game was a little short of a record.League officials have pointed to numerous close games this season — along with a playoff hunt that still included several teams toward the end — as big reasons that ratings jumped. (It’s less clear how much Ms. Swift helped boost viewership.)We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    Meet the Woman Who Helped Pay for That R.F.K. Super Bowl Ad

    Nicole Shanahan, a Bay Area lawyer once married to the Google co-founder Sergey Brin, gave $4 million and creative guidance to a group backing Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s independent presidential bid.Super Bowl ads cost a fortune. So when a group backing the presidential bid of Robert F. Kennedy Jr. ran a 30-second ad for him during Sunday night’s game, the political world took notice.How had the super PAC of a long-shot independent candidate paid for such a costly spot, and whose idea was it to adapt a vintage John F. Kennedy ad for his nephew’s campaign?A major source of the funding — and the creative guidance — it turns out, was Nicole Shanahan, a lawyer, entrepreneur and Democratic donor who was once married to the Google co-founder Sergey Brin.In an interview on Monday, Ms. Shanahan said she had given $4 million to the super PAC, American Values 2024, about a week before the game, for the express purpose of helping pay for a Super Bowl ad. She also helped coordinate the ad’s production, she said, including navigating concerns from CBS Sports and Paramount, which broadcast the Super Bowl.“It seems like a great opportunity to highlight that he’s running for president,” Ms. Shanahan said. She said part of her motivation was concern about the environment, vaccines and children’s health, and her belief that Mr. Kennedy was willing to challenge the scientific establishment.“I do wonder about vaccine injuries,” she said, although she clarified that she is “not an anti-vaxxer,” but wanted more screening of risks for vaccinations. “I think there needs to be a space to have these conversations.”We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    Taylor Swift, Usher and a Kansas City Chiefs’ Super Bowl Win in Las Vegas

    Take America’s biggest game, add Taylor Swift and Usher, and put it all in Las Vegas, and Kansas City’s repeat as Super Bowl champion makes perfect sense.At some point, the Super Bowl stopped being entirely about football and evolved — or is it devolved — into a corporate carnival with lavish parties, halftime extravaganzas and commercials whose budgets seemed to rival a blockbuster movie.The apex of that transformation arrived with the N.F.L. planting this year’s event in Las Vegas, where the prevailing ethos might well be that a bellyful of anything is barely enough.But Super Bowl LVIII, with its attendant flash — and America’s favorite football fan, Taylor Swift, chugging a beer in a private box — demonstrated on Sunday night how sports stands apart from other types of entertainment.If the Kansas City Chiefs’ 25-22 overtime victory over the San Francisco 49ers was as tightly scripted as Usher’s elaborate choreography, the teams might have been pelted with rotten tomatoes or booed off the stage by halftime. It was mostly an evening of stumbles and bumbles: two fumbles, an interception, a muffed punt, a blocked extra point, a raft of untimely penalties — and for the 49ers enough regrets to last a lifetime.But all the mistakes and all those field goals — seven in all — would eventually be subsumed by the tension that unfolded in the fourth quarter and continued on into overtime of what became the longest game in Super Bowl history.Kansas City receiver Mecole Hardman caught the winning touchdown with three seconds left in the first overtime period.Bridget Bennett for The New York TimesWe are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    Taylor Swift Gives a Fashion Brand a Boost at the Super Bowl

    Who says Area is just about the concept and not the clothes?About half an hour after the Area show ended in New York on Super Bowl Sunday, Taylor Swift appeared in Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas wearing a pair of the brand’s “crystal slit jeans” — a high-waist denim style sliced diagonally at the center of each thigh, the patently faux “rip” framed by diamanté. It was like a runway-to-real-life feature happening in actual time — or Super time.Area, which is celebrating its 10th anniversary, is generally one of those fashion week brands that most nonfashion people see and say, “But who would wear that?” (Well, other than Simone Biles making a viral statement at the Met Gala.) Ms. Swift was the perfect answer. The designer Piotrek Panszczyk — and indeed all of fashion, which sometimes suffers from a clothes-concept perception gap — could not have planned it better had he tried.Mr. Panszczyk sits firmly in the Moschino-Schiaparelli fashion tradition of wielding sartorial humor as a commentary on contemporary life, though he tends to sit on the punny performance art end of that spectrum. Last season he used “Flintstones” bones and “Dynasty” faux furs to symbolize the evolution of luxury and caste signaling, which came after a season built around the idea of fruit and mortality, mostly in the form of banana skirts. The looks attract the sort of person who does not mind going on a milk run in Bushwick draped in rhinestones and not much else.Ms. Swift, however, is an endorsement of a different kind. It’s not the first time she has worn Area denim. Last April she wore the brand’s crystal butterfly jeans in New York, and in October she wore a pair of Area embellished jeans shorts to another Chiefs game. (She does like a bit of sparkle.) But this is the first time she wore its denim when more than 100 million people were watching. It’s a potent, and deserved, argument for the future of Area as a credible business, rather than merely a fashion week gimmick.AreaAreaAreaAreaAreaAreaAs was the latest collection, which chose as its hot topic the peculiarly modern state of endless watching — of looking, and being looked at in turn. One that seemed notably apropos given the attention being paid to Ms. Swift and everything she does. It’s a serious subject, but the clothes were awfully fun.We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    A Guide to the Super Bowl

    We explain the teams, the halftime show, the prop bets and more.Nothing brings together more Americans — not awards shows, not television series finales, not even presidential debates — than the Super Bowl.Will this year’s game, between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers, be the most watched ever? By one measure — the total number of people watching — it seems likely to be. Last year’s game set the record, with 115 million viewers in the U.S., and it did not have Taylor Swift.Swift’s expected presence at the game, to cheer on her boyfriend, the Chiefs’ tight end Travis Kelce, has the potential to help it break the 1982 record for the highest proportion of Americans who watched: 49 percent.In the rest of today’s newsletter, we’ll tell you what you need to know about this year’s Super Bowl; the teams, the strange bets, the halftime show and more.The teamsKansas City Chiefs: If you’re someone who watches football only on Super Bowl Sunday, it may seem unremarkable that the Chiefs are playing today. They’ve reached the Super Bowl in four of the past five seasons. Yet this season was not a great one for the Chiefs. They lost six games, the most they have since Patrick Mahomes took over as starting quarterback. Their offense struggled with turnovers and dropped passes. Kelce’s performances seemed to falter even as his celebrity grew; he failed to score a touchdown in the final six games of the regular season.Since the playoffs began, though, the team has looked more like the Chiefs of old. Kelce has scored three touchdowns in the past two games. And the defense has been excellent all season.We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    The New N.F.L. Owners?

    As team valuations skyrocket, the league is weighing whether to relax ownership rules that prohibit investment from private equity funds.The biggest upcoming football event for many of the N.F.L. owners and business executives who will populate luxury boxes at the Super Bowl this weekend is not, perhaps surprisingly, the game. It actually won’t take place until six weeks later, in Orlando, Fla., when football executives gather for the National Football League’s annual meeting — an event that has particular significance this year.At the meeting, the league is expected to address a long-simmering question: whether to allow passive investment from private equity firms, which work with money sourced everywhere from sovereign wealth funds to pension funds to wealthy individuals.Major League Baseball, the National Basketball Association and the National Hockey League have already relaxed their ownership rules. But the N.F.L. both prohibits private equity money and has some of the strictest rules for investing, requiring general partners to buy at least a 30 percent stake in the team and limiting the use of debt to $1.2 billion. Allowing institutional investors to own teams could vault already high-flying valuations higher and change the culture of team ownership.In Florida, a committee of five team owners that includes Arthur Blank, the Atlanta Falcons owner and a founder of Home Depot, and Greg Penner, the Walmart chairman and an owner of the Denver Broncos, is likely to weigh in on the issue, according to two people familiar with the process who asked not to be named to discuss private deliberations. It is unclear whether that will immediately lead to a vote or whether the league will take time to study those recommendations. The N.F.L. declined to comment.“I don’t want to predict one way or another whether we will ultimately adopt it,” Clark Hunt, the owner of the Kansas City Chiefs, who is also on the committee, said this week. “But I do think it is an avenue that can be helpful from a capital standpoint.”Industry insiders have been whispering about the meeting and have a lot of questions. Among them:Would the N.F.L. allow sovereign investors? Soon after the N.B.A. allowed pension and sovereign funds to invest in its leagues, the Qatar Investment Authority bought a 5 percent stake in three Washington, D.C., teams. Saudi Arabia’s wealth fund, which struck a splashy (though far from certain) deal with the PGA Tour last year, has also been eyeing tennis.We are having trouble retrieving the article content.Please enable JavaScript in your browser settings.Thank you for your patience while we verify access. If you are in Reader mode please exit and log into your Times account, or subscribe for all of The Times.Thank you for your patience while we verify access.Already a subscriber? Log in.Want all of The Times? Subscribe. More

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    How Usher Arrived at the Super Bowl Halftime Show

    Subscribe to Popcast!Apple Podcasts | Spotify | Amazon MusicIn a 30-year career, Usher has been many things — an R&B prodigy, a history-minded technician, a legitimate crossover pop star, an EDM experimenter and lately, a consummate showman with a Las Vegas residency that prompted untold viral videos of a performer extraordinarily at ease with his gifts.And yet Usher, 45, has long felt curiously undervalued, which perhaps explains why it is only now that he has been offered what might be music’s biggest stage: the 2024 Super Bowl halftime show. (He was a guest during the 2011 show.)On this week’s Popcast, a conversation about Usher’s long career path through several generations of R&B, how he was received at his pop peak, and what he might do on the halftime stage.Guests:Thomas Hobbs, who writes about music for The Evening Standard, The Telegraph and othersDanielle Amir Jackson, editor in chief of The Oxford AmericanConnect With Popcast. Become a part of the Popcast community: Join the show’s Facebook group and Discord channel. We want to hear from you! Tune in, and tell us what you think at popcast@nytimes.com. Follow our host, Jon Caramanica, on Twitter: @joncaramanica. More