NBC 7's speaks with devoted Chargers fan Ryan Russell, a man many San Diegan believe to be a "lucky charm" for the team. One bar is so serious about Russell's magic, they've agreed to pay for his trip to Denver so he can attend the Chargers vs. Broncos playoffs game.
The San Diego Chargers are hoping for a defeat against the Broncos this Sunday -- but can one local superfan help get them there?
Bolts fanatic Ryan Russell caught the eye of the owner of the Harbor Town Pub bar and eatery in San Diego's Point Loma area last Saturday after NBC 7’s Artie Ojeda interviewed him at the Cincinnati game.
While Russell has never been to the bar, staff is convinced he is the Chargers’ lucky charm. He is a die-hard Bolts fanatic in every sense.
This season, Russell has traveled four times to watch the team play away from home – including the wild-card game against the Bengals. All four times the Bolts won.
“People are calling me the lucky charm,” Russell said. “I hope I am. I hope they can go to Denver and get this win.”
Harbor Town Pub believes in both the Bolts and Russell's so-called fan magic, and is putting its money where its mouth is.
“We have to get this guy to the Charger game,” pub staffer Kristina Thiel said.
Pub employees and management recently found Russell on Facebook and contacted him with an offer he couldn't refuse.
“Got him airfare, hotel transportation, tickets to the game – the whole shebang,” Thiel explained.
That's right, the bar is flying Russell to Denver in hopes that he can help bring the Chargers that big win come Sunday. At the last minute, the whole "shebang" cost the bar $1,300.
But it's worth it, according to Harbor Town Pub manager Ian Aspinall.
“Once we beat the Bengals we sat down and said, ‘Hey, what can we do to keep this guy rolling?’” Aspinall told NBC 7.
For his part, Russell is thrilled to take the pub up on its offer and travel to Denver this weekend.
Russell is packing light, leaving room in his over-the-shoulder luggage for a win. He predicts the score will be 38-34, Chargers.
Now, before Russell came along, the pub's lucky charm was a photo of a Bolts helmet that was placed above the door of the business.
However, Russell is the new good luck charm -- the first actual person to be considered so by the pub.