DENNIS ODA / DODA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Defensive end Osi Umenyiora, still basking in the glow of the Giants' 17-14 upset of the Patriots in the Super Bowl, was a popular interview as the only member of the Giants selected to the Pro Bowl.
2008 PRO BOWL
Giants’ chosen one
Umenyiora is the lone Pro Bowler among the Super Bowl champ Giants
The New York Giants celebrated their Super Bowl victory among millions of hometown fans yesterday without one of their most prized players.
2008 Pro Bowl
When: 11:30 a.m. Sunday
Where: Aloha Stadium
TV: KHON Ch. 3
Defensive end Osi Umenyiora, part of the pass-rush brigade that relentlessly put New England quarterback Tom Brady on his backside, watched the ticker-tape parade in downtown New York on television in his Ihilani Resort hotel room.
His reason for not being there?
"I hate to fly," Umenyiora said. "That's one of my things is flying. If I would have went to New York, there is no way I would get back out here."
Choosing to honor his second Pro Bowl selection instead, Umenyiora shed a tear watching the celebration before lacing up his football pads for one final week of a thrilling season for the 26-year-old from England.
Umenyiora is the only representative from the Super Bowl champions in Hawaii this week for Sunday's Pro Bowl at Aloha Stadium.
"It's real sad that a couple of teammates didn't make it with me, but I'm representing New York," he said.
Umenyiora played just 11 games in an injury-plagued season a year ago, but rebounded with 13 sacks this year.
Despite being the only Giant in the game, he says it's tough to argue with who is already here.
The one thing he does know is that most of his Pro Bowl colleagues seemed to have his back on Sunday.
"I get the sense that a lot of them wanted to see the Patriots lose," Umenyiora said. "For some, it's almost like they won they are so happy. I don't know what the Patriots did to everybody man. Everybody was just happy to see them lose."