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The Story Behind tells the extraordinary history of the ordinary. Everyday objects are more closely examined, from their ancient beginnings through the present—all within 5-10 minutes.

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Mar 20, 2017

It’s no wonder athletes can be incredibly superstitious. The difference between winging a game or a medal can mean the difference between a giant sum of money and endorsements versus getting little or nothing in return for all the hard work they put in. Why not try anything to add to their success? You would think Michael Jordan wouldn’t have needed luck, but he helped popularize longer basketball shorts because he would wear his old college shorts from North Carolina for good luck underneath.

I even heard from some listeners about their favorite superstitions.

Dan Brenic from the Netflix and Swill podcast has mentioned he grows a playoff beard; and listener Jarrod Taylor says whenever he’s watching a game with his favorite team, if they start losing, he’ll change the channel, and if they start coming back, he won’t watch the rest of the game.

Even my husband is normally a complete skeptic, until it comes to hockey and his beloved New York Rangers. Every year around playoffs, he puts away his razor and grows his annual playoff beard. And when he played hockey growing up, he told me he would put his pads and uniform on in the same order every time.

For the month of March, I’ll be looking at the stories behind common superstitions and symbols of luck.

I’m your host, Emily Prokop, and this is The Story Behind Sports Superstitions & Curses.

Love this series? GET THE CD! The entire Luck & Superstitions series is available on CD -- the perfect gift for people who love trivia but aren't into podcasts (yet).

The role of William Sianus was played by Dave Jackson from The School of Podcasting.

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