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‘If You Only Knew’ Tony Hawk: Larry King Talks to the Skateboarding Legend

With today’s release of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 5 for Xbox One and PS4, we’re getting to know the legend behind the video game and some of the best tricks in skateboarding history.

Tony Hawk, one of the world’s best and most adored skateboarders, won more than 70 skateboarding competitions in his 17 years of professional skateboarding. In addition to his success in the pro world, Hawk launched a number of entrepreneurial ventures of his own including Birdhouse, his enormously successful skate company, Hawk Clothing, a children’s skate clothing company, and a series of Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater video games he launched alongside with Activision. Hawk is also active on the philanthropic front, funding over $5 million through his Tony Hawk Foundation for more than 550 skatepark projects. The Foundation presently serves more than 4.8 million Americans yearly. 

Larry King sat down with the pro skater to discuss his skateboarding career, and what he had to give up to pursue it. Here are a few things we learned from Larry’s interview with Hawk: 

1. Tony Hawk’s first kiss was with a girl named Monica at the skate park when he was 13 or 14 years old. 

2. His most awkward fan encounter was when a man recognized him at a urinal and reached out to shake his hand. 

3. If Hawk wasn’t skateboarding professionally, he would do video editing. In fact, he had one of the first nonlinear editing systems. 

4. He thinks Minneapolis has the most underrated skating culture.

5. What keeps Hawk up at night? The safety and future of his children. 



Watch the clip below from Tony Hawk’s interview with Larry King to hear Hawk’s thoughts on skateboarding as an Olympic sport.