History's All-Time 20 Greatest Sports Moments (According To Y'all)
It's time to get inspired. Yes, stuff is bad sometimes, what with it raining on Tuesday and that whole situation in the kitchen, but sports offer a reason to get up and cheer and hug strangers. The following moments from sports history got our readers crying with joy, and maybe then did the same for you.
Chicago Cubs, 2016
"World Series. Game 7.," says Ryan S. "Bottom of the tenth. 8-7 score. 0-1 pitch count. A scooped up infield grounder and throw to first. A 108-year-old curse comes to an end. Generations of Cubs fans lose their shit (myself included)."
Tiger Woods, 2019
"Tiger Woods winning his 5th Masters," says Kate W., "after the back surgeries and everything he'd been through. At the 12th hole on Sunday when you could see it click in his eyes, I got chills. And to see him hug his son as he came off the course with the win, at the same spot his dad had met him when he won his first one ... waterworks!"
Jens Voigt, 2011
Robert E. tells of Jens Voigt, a cyclist who tossed a kid his empty water bottle, which was snatched up by a man in the crowd. So Voigt turned his bike around, stopped in the middle of the race, and made the man give the bottle back to the boy. We don't have footage of that, but here's Voigt talking about another incident Robert mentioned: the time his bike broke down, so he borrowed a tiny child's bike.
Kurt Angle, 1996
"Kurt Angle winning the Olympic gold medal in 1996 with a broken freaking neck," says Ritchie J. That catchphrase of Angle's was accurate: He fractured two neck vertebrae in a match six months before the Olympics, still won the game, ignored doctors' orders to rest, and went on to win a gold medal.
English Premier League, 2012
"It wasn't the best for me personally," says Catriona H., "as it irreparably shattered my heart, but ... The English Premier League, final day, 2011/2012. Manchester United had all but won it and were celebrating, until Man City (bitter rivals) scored 2 injury-time goals in the very dying minutes/seconds to snatch the title. I saw fully grown men cry that day. It cut deep. But it was probably the best day ever for Man City fans. Not only did they beat their bitter rivals (in the most dramatic fashion), they also won the league for the first time in 44 years."
World Series, 2001
Trevor T. picks an opening pitch from the 2001 World Series. The games had been postponed due to 9/11, and game 3's ceremonial pitch came from the President of the United States, George W. Bush. The Arizona Diamondbacks would go on to win the series, their first win, beating out the Yankees, who had won in the three previous consecutive years.
The Miracle On Ice, 1980
A bunch of readers mentioned the Miracle on Ice, when the US beat favored-Russia in the 1980 Olympics despite fielding a team consisting mostly of amateurs. We like Gar C.'s personal story about it best: “I was on my school-sponsored ski trip in Colorado, U.S.A. In line for the ski lift when they broadcast it over the loud speakers. The mountain was loaded with skiers. Winter Park CO, very popular resort. Everybody went nuts! It was a magnificent feeling for a 15-year-old kid. All that pride and joy. I didn't completely understand it but reveled in it all the same.”
World Cup, 2014
Byron D. picks a crazy World Cup game from 2014: "Germany 7, Brazil 1. This is simply a result that people could not have dreamt of in their wildest dreams. Every time you would blink, Germany scored another one on Brazil. It's also the only time I can recall in sports where a crowd of 100K+ people were so emphatically silenced, then reduced to tears, and then reduced to booing their own team. And all of this took place in a World Cup Semi-final against the host nation, who is also a powerhouse."
Hardie-Ferodo 1000, 1977
"When car 1 and 2 form finished at Mt Panorama in the Bathurst 1000 of 1977," says John B. The Bathurst 1000 is an annual 600-mile race in Australia, and in 1977, two Ford Falcons fielded by the same team crosses the finish line side-by-side, beating the nearest competitor by a lap.
Dwayne Leverock, 2007
"Dwayne Leverock's catch at the 2007 cricket World Cup," says Chris B. Looking at the video, it might not quite look like the Superman catch it's advertised as, but Chris explains it for us: "Proof that an obese prison van driver, that lives above an Indian restaurant on a small tropical island, can fly."
World Series, 1956
Going quite a bit back in time, Michael F. picks "Don Larsen's perfect game in the ‘56 World Series. A rare moment magnified by the situation, a pivotal World Series game 5, and made sweeter for Larsen by his previous two World Series starts: disastrous losses to the same Brooklyn Dodgers he shut down that day."
Rose Bowl, 2006
"Texas beating USC in the BCS Championship," says Casey P. "I was bartending during that game. When USC went up 12 late, everyone cashed out and left. Texas roared back to win by 3, after weeks of hype about where USC stood on the all-time list, how badly they would have beaten other legendary teams, and how the Longhorns were an afterthought. A lot of the people that bailed had come back to watch the end. That's the best college football game in the 21st century, and the best game in any sport I've ever watched."
Buster Douglas, 1990
"When James 'Buster' Douglas knocked out Mike Tyson on February 3rd, 1990," says Blake L. "When asked how he did it, Buster said 'My mom told everyone I was going to beat Mike Tyson.' She died of cancer days before the fight and he did it so his mom wouldn't die a liar."
Super Bowl LI, 2017
The New England Patriots aren't often called underdogs nowadays, but Amy N. points us to their unbelievable Super Bowl performance in 2017. "Patriots vs Atlanta. Greatest comeback of all time. Down 28-3 near the end of the 3rd quarter. I still get chills watching it, and reliving the excitement of it all."
Lou Gehrig, 1939
Charles C. picks "Lou Gehrig's 'I am the Luckiest Man' speech. One of the greatest to pick up a bat and glove giving a farewell speech remembered to this day." Gehrig had played for the Yankees for 17 seasons before ALS forced him to retire.
South Africa, 1995
"South Africa winning the Rugby world cup in 1995," says Asmus S. "The bunch of misfit underdogs wins against the odds and unites a divided country behind them. If this had been made up for a movie (they made a good one about it), people probably would have called it to cheesy and unbelievable." Another reader, Michael R., isn't such a fan. "A likely story," he says, sarcastically. "Absolutely without any suspicions of heavy use of doping, bribery, poisoning, political pressure or dubious refereeing decisions.
Arsenal FC, 2004
Adam P. picks Arsenal's 2003-2004 season, where they became known as the Invincibles. "Winning the title without losing a single game, playing some of the most attractive and skillful football the world had seen," he explains. "And to win the league on the stadium of the bitter local rival was just the icing on the cake."
Muhammad Ali, 1996
"Ali lighting the torch at the 1996 summer Olympics," says Rich C. Organizers had actually planned on giving the honor to Evander Holyfield, since he was from Atlanta, and they pushed back against Ali's nomination, calling him a draft dodger.
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WrestleMania XXVI, 2010
"When The Undertaker beat Shawn Michaels at WrestleMania XXVI to end Shawn's career," says Robert B. Yes, it was scripted, but Robert says that doesn't keep wrestling from being a sport. "That doesn't mean it isn't full of spectacular feats of athleticism," he says, "which, in my mind and the minds of many likeminded wrestling fans, means that we consider it a sport, and what's more is that we can't wait for some of the other big sports organizations like football and boxing to finally admit that maybe, just maybe, there's a bit of a fix every now and then."
The Red Sox, 2004
"The Red Sox finally breaking the Curse' and winning the World Series for the first time in 86 years!" says Nichole A. Though, other readers point out that the real triumph was the way they won the American League Championship before going on to easily sweep the World Series. As Jon T. puts it: "Best part was hearing the Fox announcers the whole time saying, 'NO team has EVER come back from a 3-0 deficit to win the pennant!' How many times did they say that over the course of games 4-7?" And the best single moment, says Jennifer J.: "Bottom of the 9th, game 4 of the ALCS, Red Sox v Yankees. 3 outs away from being swept. Dave Roberts pinch runs for Kevin Millar and steals 2nd."
Top Image: Arturo Pardavila III