What professional sport event sticks out in your mind?
January 25, 2005 11:32 AM   Subscribe

What event in or relating to professional sports sticks out most in your mind? Why, and what does it mean to you? (+)

For me, it's Superbowl XXVVII, Cowboys vs. Bills. Leon Lett recovers a Buffalo fumble and there's noone and nothing between him and a TD. Leon's about to score his FIRST TOUCHDOWN EVAR!!!!111 At the 10 yard line, he starts celebrating, turns off the afterburners, holds out his arms... and Don Bebee catches up from behind and swats the ball free. What does it mean? Follow through on your goals (no pun intended). Don't stop working hard just because you're almost done.

A buddy I posed this question to responded with the July 2nd, 1994 murder of Colombian Soccer defender Andres Escobar. Ten days after returning to Columbia following his accidental own-score in their game versus the US Team, which resulted in Columbia losing 1-2, Andrew Escobar was shot twelve times outside a bar in Medellin. What does it mean? Some people take sports too damn seriously.
posted by cactus to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (23 answers total)
For me, it's the 2001 World Series between the NY Yankees and the Arizona Diamondbacks. After 9/11, the Americana of baseball really sucked me in. Aside from that, it was David vs. Goliath. And David won. (In 7 games!) What does it mean to me? I suppose it means sometimes getting sucked into a game is exactly what I need.
posted by paulychamp at 11:52 AM on January 25, 2005

posted by DevilsAdvocate at 11:52 AM on January 25, 2005

Possibly the greatest football match I've ever seen:
Wednesday May 26, 1999

Manchester United sealed a historic Treble (English Premier League Champions, FA Cup winners and European Champions) last night. That was predicted. But what could not have been foreseen was the manner of their victory. Two goals in injury-time by substitutes Teddy Sheringham and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer handed them a victory every bit as remarkable as their first European Cup at Wembley win 31 years earlier.
Like most Brits, I detest Man U. But that was an unforgettable match. Unforgettable.
posted by dash_slot- at 11:57 AM on January 25, 2005

An unbeaten (37-0, 33 KO) Mike Tyson taking on the bigger yet surely second-rate James "Buster" Douglas in Tokyo in 1990. In the 8th round, Tyson knocks Douglas to the floor with seconds left in the round. The ref takes a few seconds to make sure Tyson isn't standing right on top of Douglas and then starts making his ten count. Douglas gets up at nine but if you count the time the ref was dealing with Tyson before starting the official count it would be closer to 15 seconds before Douglas got up. Douglas gets up, the round ends. In the tenth round, Douglas KOs Tyson and wins the fight that he should have lost already. Tyson begins his skid downwards after that fight in my opinion.

What it means to me? Boxing (and life) is inherently rigged. The best doesn't always win, the rules are not always adhered to. No matter how much we want boxing (life) to be officiated properly, fairly, and equally, it isn't. Oh yeah, and one kink in the armor can bring down the mighty.
posted by pwb503 at 11:59 AM on January 25, 2005

SportsFilter might be a useful place to ask this question as well.
posted by Vidiot at 12:11 PM on January 25, 2005

Joe Theisman's compound fracture.
posted by knave at 12:59 PM on January 25, 2005

The Broncos (finally!) winning the Super Bowl on their fifth try. (I am such a sentimental fan that I can still make myself get teary-eyed just by thinking of Pat Bowlen's declaration whilst holding the trophy: "this one's for John!")
posted by scody at 1:19 PM on January 25, 2005

scody, I can hardly wait for the day when I can dance on John's grave for what he said about Baltimore.
posted by danOstuporStar at 1:28 PM on January 25, 2005

Lance Armstrong winning his first TdF. Cancer survivor wins most grueling bicycle stage race in the world. Also, his second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth victories.
posted by fixedgear at 1:31 PM on January 25, 2005

Robert Parish, the Chief, landing a 3 punch knockout on Bill Laimbeer in retailation for an earlier cheapshot on Larry Bird during the 1987 Conference championship. Parish studies karate and what could have been fists of flying death was somehow a thing of beauty. It was so perfect (and justified) that the referees didn't even call a foul.

That moment contained some important life lessons:
- protect your teammates
- peace is preferable but sometimes an asskicking is in order
- "Bad Boy" is a measure bad-assedness not bad attitudes
posted by McGuillicuddy at 2:13 PM on January 25, 2005

Lance Armstrong winning his first TdF.

second that.

but will stipulate that the most stand-out moment of any recent tour has to be the moment in stage 15 of the 2003 tour when lance went down hard after getting his bars caught on a spectator's musette while climbing luz ardiden...

or, how about joseba beloki's gnarly high-speed crash in stage 9 of the same tour, when lance had to bail through the field...

man, that was a race!
posted by RockyChrysler at 2:44 PM on January 25, 2005

Most of my favorite moments revolve around the Pittsburgh Penguins. My most recent, best sports memory would probably be Mario's first game back when he came out of retirement, specifically, when he scored in the third period. I was pretty happy to see that. Oh, and Darius Kasparitus scoring in double overtime in Buffalo to close the series was a pretty good night for me too.

Oh, and my other most happiest memories were watching the Miami Hurricanes lose a few games this year too ;)
posted by punkrockrat at 3:38 PM on January 25, 2005

Sammy Sosa sprinting in from the outfield to congratulate and hug Mark McGwire and McGwire wading into the stands like Paul Bunyan to hug Roger Maris' family after McGwire broke Maris' record for home runs in a season in 1998. Sosa's joy for the guy who he'd competed against all summer in a thrilling home run race and McGwire's acknowledgement of his place in history and his generosity in sharing his moment with the Maris family were very classy moves. (From people that haven't always been classy, sure.)
posted by kirkaracha at 4:02 PM on January 25, 2005

Games three, four, and five of the 1995 American League Division Series watching the Seattle Mariners defeat New York Yankees in one of the best series comebacks ever (until the BoSox this year).

300 level, front row, me and my Dad for three days not knowing if that was the night we drove the 180 miles back home, or if we were finding another motel to stick around for one more game. Especially memorable since that was the time my Dad and I really got to know each other as we hung out between games.
posted by ..ooOOoo....ooOOoo.. at 4:05 PM on January 25, 2005

The sixth game of the 1986 World Series. The Sox had, unbelievably, won the first two games in Shea Stadium, and it was hard to believe they wouldn't win two of three in Fenway and thus the Series. Then the Mets went on to win the next two, tying the Series, but lost the fifth game to a superb Bruce Hurst. (Incidentally, people knock Gooden for losing the second and fifth games, but in both cases he was betrayed by his fielders -- Teufel booted a ball leading to the only Sox run in the second, and Santana and Strawberry messed up in the fifth.) I watched the fifth game at home, and was so irritated by the distracting chatter of my friends and then-wife, none of whom were baseball fans, that I resolved to watch the sixth game with a fellow baseball fan who lived in the East Village.

By the time the game went into extra innings, we were pretty drunk, and when the Mets' amazin' comeback began, we froze in our positions, exhibiting typical baseball superstition. I won't describe the details of the unforgettable climax -- see my first link -- but when it was over and the Mets had won, my pal and I went out into the street to find that all of New York was doing the same: it was the kind of spontaneous popular outpouring that can topple governments, and it remains the high point of my civic existence as a New Yorker. (It's true there was one game still to play, but nobody believed the Sox could overcome the forces of history and win it, and sure enough they didn't.)

For anyone who gets NESN, they're replaying the game tomorrow night (at 6 according to my TV schedule, at 7 according to their website), and I'm taping the bastard -- I've wanted a tape for 18 years. (Apologies to Sox fans for the painful memory; I'll try to make at least partial amends by pointing out that I was rooting for them last year. Anybody who beats out the evil Yanks is OK with me.)
posted by languagehat at 4:28 PM on January 25, 2005

Like most Brits, I detest Man U
amen to that.
Although, I guess I have more reason than most.

/me kneels on the floor and asks "Alan Smith!!! Why!!!!"

Best time ever was last world cup (That's Soaker to you yanks). England v someone-else. First thing in the morning, two hours before work, and the first two pints went down like cold silk. After the match had finished, En-gar-land, staggered towards my employment laughing my head off with the guy who works in the office opposite.


Second best was watching Leeds get through to the (then) First division. I thought the Evening post would never stop sponsoring them. Good times.
posted by seanyboy at 4:29 PM on January 25, 2005

I remember the '93 Stanley Cup pretty well, especially that crazy Game 7 where Richter was an inhuman puck-stopping machine, and Pavel Buré his Terminatorian Nemesis, eventually brought low and humbled by fatigue and an inability to score.

I was in a sports bar in Boston, and Boston fans love their hockey. That made it much more fun.
posted by ikkyu2 at 4:34 PM on January 25, 2005

It's painful, but the eighth inning of Game Six of the 2003 NLCS.

I can't blame Steve Bartman, 95% of the Wrigley Field attendance would have tried to do the same thing. But man, did it hurt to watch the whole damn thing go down the drain after that.

Five outs away with an unhittable Mark Prior on the mound, I never expected to go to sleep that night with my soul ripped out.
posted by sellout at 5:06 PM on January 25, 2005

This was it.
December 31, 1967. 13 degrees below zero, Lambeau Field. Starr's touchdown (QB sneak, one minute on the clock), third down with no timeouts. Bart vaulted over Jethro Pugh.
Me sitting in front of a Philco. The Old Man screaming like a fool (Lombardi was his coach in college).
posted by nj_subgenius at 6:47 PM on January 25, 2005

Second place: Bill Buckner, 1986 World Series.
posted by nj_subgenius at 6:51 PM on January 25, 2005

I'm going to say Magic Johnson's announcement that he was HIV positive. It was definitely one of the most shocking announcements in sports, and I don't think anyone's thought about AIDS in the same way since.
posted by SisterHavana at 8:01 PM on January 25, 2005

September 28, 1972. The first Russia-Canada hockey series. Canada wins the evenly balanced series with a goal at the last possible moment. The whole country goes nuts.

I was a kid at the time, but I've never forgotten the rush.
posted by zadcat at 8:56 PM on January 25, 2005

19 May 2001: last match at the dell.
posted by monkey closet at 5:44 AM on January 26, 2005

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