KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Willie Lanier was part of the last Chiefs Super Bowl Championship team in 1970.
“I can’t imagine how different it is today versus what it is then," Lanier said.
Things were certainly a little different when Gary Cortes was selling season tickets to Chiefs games in early 1963. They were a little cheaper.
Now, a ticket to Super Bowl LIV will probably cost you more than $5,000. Cortes said his season ticket deals cost, “$30-$40 maybe $50 at the most, and those were for good seats box seats front row."
Cortes was a member of the Junior Chamber of Commerce, tasked by Kansas City’s Mayor H. Roe Bartle with selling enough tickets to help convince Lamar Hunt to relocate an AFL team from Dallas to Kansas City.
He sold tickets to Christy Chester and bought one himself. Both have been season ticket holders for 57 years.
“That’s what small market teams have. They become embraced by the entire community, and they become part of the fabric," Cortes said.
Chester got to know the Hunts and texted Norma Hunt after yesterday’s AFC Championship.
“She’s such a sweet humble lady, and she deserved it. She really did it was about time," she said.
It’s the team’s first trip to the Super Bowl since the era Willie Lanier helped anchor the Chiefs defense. That team took on the Viking "Purple People Eaters."
This time, the Chiefs will battle a tough 49ers defense, but Lanier is confident in another Chiefs victory.
“After the Houston game, when they came back to win, my view is they will take the whole thing. It doesn’t matter who the opponent is, it doesn’t matter how you play. You go to do your work, you get your ring, you have the parade and there’s joy in Kansas City in two and a half weeks," Lanier said.
Lanier and several of his teammates had to miss the 1970 Super Bowl IV parade. The final AFL All Star Game before what would become the Pro Bowl was after the Super Bowl was played at the same time in Houston.
Lanier said he and the surviving members of that team will definitely be here to see a Chiefs Super Bowl Parade this time around if it happens.
On Monday, he was in attendance at the Chiefs Kingdom radio show on 810 Sports at an Overland Park Hy-Vee packed with hundreds of fans.
That's where Mitch Holthus, the voice of the Kansas City Chiefs, described calling Sunday's AFC Championship.
“It was decades flashing in front of my eyes. My brain was just scanning these people through 2 and 14 seasons. It was the way I ended the game, the king forever of the kingdom, the team that Lamar Hunt founded has just won Lamar Hunt’s trophy in the stadium that was Lamar Hunt’s dream," he said.