Winning Touchdown from Joe Montana
During the National Football Challenge (NFC) Championship American football game between the Dallas Cowboys and the San Francisco 49ers, Joe Montana rose to fame because of his touchdown to Dwight Clark that led to the victory of his team. That “catch” is known today as one of the most memorable moves ever made in the history of NFL.
Controversial Goal by Diego Maradona
As a professional athlete, Diego Maradona reached the peak of his popularity after an infamous handball that he made during the FIFA World Cup between England and Argentina in 1986. Following that infamous goal, he scored another goal which clinched the victory for his team. That move is known today as the “Greatest Goal in FIFA World Cup History.”
The Retirement of the Undefeated Heavyweight Champion
Rocky Marciano is the only heavyweight champion of the world who never came across a loss throughout his career. A boxer from 1952 to 1956, Marciano fought in a total of 49 boxing matches and won all of them, 43 of which by knockouts. Up until today, he is considered as the only heavyweight champion who retired without a record of loss.
Single Foot Vault
American gymnast Kerri Strug joined the 1996 Olympics and took the limelight after she unintentionally yet successfully pulled off a one-footed vault during her performance. Her first attempt failed after she under-rotated her landing and fell. On her way to the runway for her second attempt, she landed on her good foot and confidently raised her arms in front of the judges. That earned her a 9.712 score and a gold.
Jackie Robinson’s Way to Brooklyn Dodgers
In 1947, famous African-American major league baseball player Jackie Robinson signed a major league contract with the Brooklyn Dodgers of the Major League Baseball (MLB). His debut with the team ended about eight years ago on issue of baseball segregation, in which it is believed that blacks and whites should be kept apart in all aspects of life, including sports.
The Bob Beamon Long Jump
Bob Beamon successfully set a World Record for his long jump measuring 29’2 ½ inches during the Summer Olympics on October 18, 1968. He broke the existing record at that time by almost two feet. His jump labeled “The Perfect Jump” by journalist Dick Schaap) held the record for 23 years until it was broken in 1991.
Speech of a Dying Athlete
Lou Gehrig used to play for the New York Yankees from 1925 to 1939 but stopped when he was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). As he was about to die on July 4, 1939, he stood before around 60,000 of his fans and thanked them for receiving nothing but kindness from them for the 17 years that he played more than 2,000 games.
The End of Roger Maris’ Single-Season Home Run Record
Roger Maris’ spectacular single-season homerun was broken in 1998 by Mark McGwire after he had hit a pitch by Steve Trachsel of Chicago Clubs over the left field well, making it to his record-breaking 62nd home run. His victory set off grand celebrations at Busch Stadium. He had a total of 70 homeruns for the season, four homeruns ahead of Sosa’s record of 66.
Super Shot by Bobby Thomson
Bobby Thomson’s name took the limelight in baseball after his game-winning homerun during the 1951 National League. The playoff game between The Dodgers and Giants is considered today as the most famous game in the history of baseball.
100 Points in a Single Game
Considered by the National Basketball Association as one of its greatest games, the playoff between Philadelphia Warriors and the New York Knicks on March 2, 1962 in Pennsylvania left Wilt Chamberlain under the limelight after he scored 100 points and won the gold for his team. He was hailed by spectators as the hero of that night.
Last Second Kickoff
The college football game between the University of California Golden Bears and the Stanford University Cardinal on November 20, 1982 made history after a last-second kickoff return that led to the victory of the former. This wild game is considered as one of the most memorable college football games ever played in history.
Jesse Owen’s Debunking of Aryan Myth
During the reign of Adolf Hitler in Nazi Germany, Africans were portrayed as inferior because of the concept of ‘Aryan Racial Superiority.” Even African athletes that time were discriminated because of the concept. To everybody’s surprise, Jesse Owens, an African, brought home four gold medals thereby proving the Aryan philosophy wrong.
Eight Medals In One Olympics Event
Athlete Michael Phelps won a total of eight gold medals during the 2008 Summer Olympics, setting the record for the most number of medals won in a single sports event. The record set by Phelps surpassed the record made by Mark Splitz who once made seven medals in one Olympics event.
Michael Jordan’s Final Basket
With 5 NBA MVP Awards, Michael Jordan is arguably the best player to play basketball. During the NBA finals in 1998, The Chicago Bulls, his team at that time, led the series 3-2 but trailed the last game 86-85 with 10 seconds left. He scored two points at the last second of the game, clinching a momentous victory for the Bulls.
Miracle On Ice
During the 1980 National Hockey League, the US Hockey Team defeated the NHL All-Stars Soviet team. An incredible feat considering the fact that the US team was made up of amateur and collegiate players. Today, this event is known as the “Miracle on Ice” and is heralded as the greatest hockey sports moment of the 20th century.
Mike Tyson Bit off Holyfield’s Ear
One of the most controversial yet spectacular events in the history of sports was when boxer Mike Tyson bit off the ear of his opponent Evander Holyfield at the end of the third round. He removed a piece of the ear (which was actually found on the ring at the end of the fight…ouch!).
King Beats Riggs in Support of Women
Sometime in May 1973, the 55-year-old Bobby Riggs defeated the top ranked female tennis player 30-year-old Margaret Court. This victory led Riggs to brag about his victory and even taunted female tennis players. This led Billie Jean King to take him on. King defeated Riggs. A crushing blow to Rigg’s ego but a welcome retribution for female players at that time.
Five and a Half Years on Tennis Throne
Most people would say that victory is short-lived. But this did not apply to Pete Sampras, whose time on tennis’ throne lasted five and a half years. His Grand Slam record was taken by Roger Federer following his fifth year on the throne.
Infamous Headbutt of Zidane
There is more to the popularity of Zinedine Zidane than just his being one of the hailed national heroes of France. During the World Cup Finals in 2006, the biggest sporting stage on earth, the famous midfielder head-butted his opponent, Marco Materazzi of Italy, and got a red card for having done so. His team lost 5-3.
Germany’s Victory in the 1954 World Cup
During the 1954 World Cup held in Berne, an underdog German team trounced the Hungary team, bringing much jubilation among the Germans. Historians have considered the victory as a key event that paved the way for the restoration of Germany’s national pride following the Nazi era, signaling the reintegration of the country in the world community.
Chinese Yao Ming Joins NBA
Yao Ming was the first international basketball player from China without any experience in a U.S. college basketball league who has ever been picked to play for the NBA. In 2002, he was chosen by Rockets to play because of his height which makes him a potential Hall of Famer. His enlistment in the NBA bridged the gap between the basketball association and China.
Tonya Harding Conspiracy
Renowned skater Nancy Kerrigan had the worst performance of her life during the 1994 Olympics, after somebody near the arena hit her right in her leg while dancing. After the competition, it was revealed that one of her rivals, Tonya Harding, made a plan to have her ex husband take her out.
Legitimization of Women’s Sports in America
It was never a smooth ride for the female soccer athletes of America when they endeavored to legitimize female sports in the United States. During the final of the World Cup in 1999, the members of the US Women’s Soccer Team, more popularly known as the “soccer moms,” marched their way to the arena to voice out the legitimization of female sports.
The preliminary soccer match for the 1970 FIFA World Cup between El Salvador and Honduras in 1969 aggravated the existing tension between the two states. The La Guerra De Futbol, more commonly known as “The Soccer War,” lasted for four days and left over a thousand people dead. Although the nickname “Football War” implies that the conflict was due to a football game, the causes of the war go much deeper. The roots of the war were issues over land reform in Honduras and immigration and demographic problems in El Salvador.
130 Bases Stolen in One Season
Popularly known as “The Man of Steal,” Rickey Henderson is the only baseball outfielder who was able to steal over a hundred bases in just a span of a season. He received a unanimous vote to the Hall of Fame after he was able to steal 130 bases in the 1982 season. Henderson had more stolen bases than some teams have had in an entire season.