Thursday, April 12, 2007

Your Greatest Sporting Event
Witnessed First-Hand?

Inspired by this post over at Deadspin (short version: Leitch contributed to a book by "pro" sports-media types about the greatest sports event they ever saw live), I would rather hear your responses. So:

What was the greatest sporting event you ever saw live in-person?

I'll start: 1996 Rose Bowl.

Looking forward to what you all contribute on this...

169 comments:

futurelegendvinceyoung said...

Tom Browning's Perfect Game against the Dodgers in 1988. Went with my Dad and younger brother. Tim Belcher was the Dodgers starter and he only gave up 3 hits.

DrDoom said...

Game 4 of the 2002 nba finals.

also a jordan bulls game at the garen where he went for like 50 points.

ldanhill said...

Super Bowl III. Going to the Orange Bowl, you cold sense something big might happen. And it did. And the NFL has not been the same since.

Sparty said...

Red Wings Vs Avs, March 26, 1997. The Wings finally return favor after what had happened to Draper the previous year. McCarty takes down the culprit, Claude Lemeiux and forces him into doing the turtle on the ice. Vernon takes out Roy after Roy gets clothelined by Shanny. McCarty scores the game winner in OT. Wings win 6-5.

Melanie said...

I have to back you up on the 1996 Rose Bowl. That was my sophomore year at NU...what a great ride that was.

Being a part of that crowd is something I will never forget.

MDT said...

Watching JJ Redick hang 41 on Texas in NJ two years back was probably the best performance I've seen live... but I'll never forget a Flyers-Pens game I went to in Philly, I think it was in '99, that featured a 6-on-6 brawl. You haven't lived until you've seen John Vanbiesbrouck throw down.

J Fitty said...

October 3, 1997. RFK Stadium. USA vs. Jamaica in a World Cup Qualifier. RFK was sold out, with maybe as many Jamaican fans as USA fans. The sound in that stadium right after Jamaica scored was unbelievable. It was awesomely loud. An unbelievable feeling being there.

Carl said...

Bears/Cardinals Monday Night Football. The infamous Denny Green "crown their ass" game. As a Bears fan, an amazing game.

Ken Dynamo said...

1995 NJ Red Dogs v some other crappy arena league team at the meadowlands. 14th birthday party. 10th row. over 100 pts, NJ wins, players ran into the stands after the game, it was sick.

i also saw a Real Madrid game while studying abroad in spain and i use that as part of a lie about how i met beckham to talk to chicks sometimes.

Joshua said...

NFC Championship at Lambeau in Jan 1997. We hadn't been to the Super Bowl in 30 years, the team had been building towards it the last several seasons, Favre was playing as well as any quarterback ever, Reggie was Reggie, it was quintessential Lambeau weather (below zero). The feeling in that stadium in the fourth quarter and following the game was indescribable.

Natsfan74 said...

Biggest event -- 1985 WS Game 6

Best event -- 1992 Army-Navy football game. Army came back from down 24-7 to win 25-24 on a field goal with 12 seconds left. Army kicker hits 44 yarder (prior career long was 42) and play was called back for delay of game. He hits a 49 yarder on the next snap, completing an improbable 4th quarter comeback. 1993 A/N game -- Navy Kicker misses 19 yarder as time expires for 16-14 Army win. 1994 A/N game -- Army wins by 1. 1995 A/N game -- Army completes a pass (unheard of at the time) on 4th and 23 to get first down, score game winning touchdown 2 plays later (about 1:00 left). Navy drives to the Army 30 and runs out of time -- Army wins by 2 for 4 wins in a row.

Also fall 1995 -- Army comes back from down 28-7 to Notre Dame (with Derrick Mays and Ron Powlus) at the Meadowlands. Army comes back to 28-27 with 10 seconds left and elects to go for 2 and the win (no OT in college yet). The Army tight end (265 lb sophomore) gets tackled by 165 lb Ivory Covington at the 1 foot line (About 5 yards from where I am standing), preserving the win for ND, but making it one of the best finishes in that storied rivalry. Those are my top 6, in order.

Keith said...

I'd have a tough time choosing between two Mario Lemieux moments:

1) The Comeback: When he made the announcement, he didn't say what exact date he'd be coming back for, and I only had a half-season ticket plan that year, so I spent the next week or so calculating the odds of the big game being one I had tickets for. It's rare when a Mellon Arena crowd gets loud enough to overcome the crappy acoustics, but the roar after Mario scored his first goal is still echoing in the halls.

2) The 5 Goals, 5 Ways game: I got lucky on that one. A buddy and his dad had an extra ticket. I think I had more fun with New Jersey's goalie situation than Mario's point binge. They rested Sean Burke that day, and started Bob Sauve. After he got shelled out of the game, they brought in Chris Terreri, who was up for a cup of coffee from the minors. You could count Terreri's minutes of NHL experience on one hand. He wasn't in the game for three shifts before the ref awarded Lemieux's penalty shot. I think we all know how that turned out.

chules said...

1992 NCAA East Regional Final, Duke vs. Kentucky. It was the final part of 3 pivotal games I was lucky to be at that Christian Laettner was a big part of (Feb '89 against Arizona, missing front end of 1-and-1 w/ no time remaining and '91 East Final against UConn).

Got the tickets from my dad's co-worker the day of the game and sat next to the Kentucky booster section. I've never seen so many people openly weeping at a sporting event before or since. Also, the noise made after the shot won't ever leave my mind.

Sean said...

Game 4, Oct. 10, 1999- BOS vs. CLE.

Most runs scored in a playoff game- 30.

What was even cooler was watching Game 5 (on TV) when CLE pitched around Nomar and Troy O'Leary crushed the ball. Pedro came out of the bullpen in rediculous fashion too.

FRTortoise438 said...

Snowbowl - Pats-Raiders - Final game at Foxboro

...although if the Pats weren't the NFL's golden boys, I would've left that game cold, hungover, and miserable

Troy said...

Is this question becoming a yearly tradition for you to ask, Dan?

For me, it has to be Florida's 2006 sweet 16 and elite 8 games.

Followed closely by the 2004 (that long ago already?) football game against FSU, where the Gators won in Tally for the first time since 1986, in the first game since the field was renamed for Bobby Bowden. Bonus points for the off-season taunting that, for a few months, Bobby Bowden was 0-1, and Ron Zook 1-0, on Bobby Bowden Field.

And no, I didn't manage to attend any of the championship games over the last year. For shame...

Aldo Q said...

Tough call. It used to be the 2004 Miami-FSU game which was a snoozer till the end. I did go to plenty of the Heat-Knicks games. But definitely Game 3 of last years NBA Finals.

matt said...

1983 NLCS Game 4 - Phillies beat the Dodgers to go the World Series. I was 7. My Dad and I sat in the second to last row of the Vet. They didn't even have seats up there, the last three rows were bleachers. That game guaranteed that I'll never forget the name Sixto Lezcano.

After the game my Dad carried me all the way down the ramp on his shoulders as everyone around us shouted "We Want the O's!"

Unfortunately we got the O's.

Misery Loves Company said...

Um...

The famous UNC-Dook "8 points in 17 seconds" game. Although I missed the last 30 seconds and heard it in the car. Ugh.

How about the first ever win by the Carolina Panthers?

ryan from boston,ma said...

Uh,let's see.I was at The Snow Bowl with friends,Patriots Vs Oakland,2002 playoffs.I think you guys know by now what happened there.

Natsfan74 said...

Yeah, a top 1 is so tough for so many reasons. My top picks are the sentimental ones, but in terms of importance there are others.

I grew up on sports (dad was a college football coach) and have seen well over 1000 pro and college games in my life. I would need at least a top 10.

I guess I'd want to add the entire fall of 2000. That season, I moved from Alabama to Kansas mid football season, so I had some great ACC/SEC/ Big 10/ and Big 12 all in one year. I went to the Georgia Tech vs. FSU game when FSU got the cheap pass interference call to give them a final chance and a win (went on to the BCS Championship game after), was at the Oklahoma vs. K-State game when KSU was #2 and OU #3, was at the OU-Nebraska game (with a girl I met at the KSU game) when Nebraska was #1, then at the Miami vs. V-Tech game (Vick's last regular season game in college) when VT was #2. So, in the final rankings, I saw the top 5 teams. That's the year Miami beat FSU, but FSU was ahead of them in the BCS standings for the right to lose 7-2 or whatever in the BCS title game. Miami was clearly the best team I saw that year.

Robert said...

1999 University of Texas v. Texas A&M. I was a student at A&M at the time, and we were still reeling as a student body from the Bonfire tragedy less than a week earlier.

The goodwill shown between the schools in this heated rivalry will likely never be replicated. That A&M won an emotional, come from behind victory, sealed by a recovered fumble made it that much more satisfying.

Not a terribly sexy choice (my Astros WS Game 5 tickets were worthless), but it was an emotional experience like none other, a true example of the carthartic potential of sports.

Lee S. Kowarski said...

As an Orioles fan, I unfortunately was at the Yankees-Orioles ALCS game where Jeff Maier reached over the wall deflecting a deep Derek Jeter shot away from Tony Tarasco's glove and into the stands to tie the game (according to the umps). I still have nightmares about the crowd chanting "Bernie, Bernie, Bernie" for hours after Bernie Williams' walk-off home-run to win it in the 11th

Cal Ripken's last games at Yankee Stadium, Fenway, and Camden Yards were all powerful as well, although I was never a big Cal fan.

itsgettinglate said...

1996, Raptors 109 Bulls 108, 36 000 at the Skydome, sitting in the very top of the dome, couldn't really tell what was going on, Scott Kerr missed a game winning jumper, rebound came to MJ who hit his shot but it was after the buzzer

Benji Lovitt said...

The first ever Big 12 championship game when Texas took down back-to-back defending national champs Nebraska. Remember, Texas was a 20 point underdog, led by James Brown who GUARANTEED victory beforehand (what was he thinking?) Against the vaunted Blackshirts defense, the outcome wasn't guaranteed until that ballsy John Mackovic 4th and 1 call when he had Brown fake the handoff and roll-out, hitting the tight end for 60-something yards. The game of the year at the time, long since forgotten by most. Not me.

Kender said...

Close call between the Purdue vs. Notre Dame football game in South Bend in 2004 and last years Indy 500. Watching my Boilers roll up 41 on the domers was sweet except I got kicked out of the stands 8 minutes into the game.

Last year's 500 on the other hand saw two Andretti's come oh so close to winning before having that dream snatched away by Sam Hornish. As a huge AGR and Andretti fan in general, that was painful to watch

Lee S. Kowarski said...

Also, while far from the best event I've ever attended, the first XFL game was a lot of fun. I had front row seats on the 50-yard line at the Meadowlands (Section 111, Row 1, Seats 1-2). Too bad that league never took off or those season tickets would have been valuable :-)

rafael said...

Countless Miami University hockey games. Awesome in the old Goggin.

R. Crowe said...

1987 NBA Championship Game 6, Lakers over Celtics to clinch. Still have the ticket stub.

TBender said...

Game 5 05 NLCS.
You could hear Pujols' footsteps as he rounded the bases.
(Robert, I had Game 5 WS tix too.)

And sentimentally...
March 93, Peoria Sectional Final (round of 32)
Springfield HS vs. Peoria Central at Robertson Field House on Bradley U's campus in Peoria

Central's Beau Smith (went to L'ville) fouls out with 90 seconds left. SHS scores 6 points in the final 16 seconds to force OT and does it by stealing two consecutive inbounds passes (layup, steal, layup, steal, buzzer beating putback). Central loses its cool in OT and SHS wins. Two nights earlier, SHS blitzed Peoria Manual (and future Illini Jerry Hester) by 30 on the same floor -- which would be the last playoff game Manual lost until 1998 as they won 4 straight IHSA championships (94, 95, 96, 97).

Patriots64 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Josh said...

Game Five, 2001 World Series. The city was still on its heels, obviously, and in pain. The Yankees kept making people smile though. The Jeter play in Oakland, taking out the record setting Mariners and the back-to-back two-out bottom of the ninth home runs to tie games four and five. To be there the second night when Brosius connected was to see the impossible happen for the second time. I'll never, ever forget the moment, the crowd and that team's last brave hurrah.

Patriots64 said...

Hockey- Sidney Crosby in a playoff game and also any game in Montreal(best atmosphere of any sport on gameday)
NFL - Vinatieri's first game at Foxboro
MLB - Cal Ripken vs the Winfield & the Jay's in 92 plus any game at Fenway
Nascar-Ryan Newman's first win

verbal97 said...

hmm...
good - saw Brian Gionta score 5 goals in a period against Maine

bad - saw BC football blow a 28-0 4th quarter lead against Miami in 1999.

ugly - was at the Jets/Chiefs game in 1992 where Dennis Byrd was paralyzed

...also been to a couple of women's US Opens (golf) and almost bumped into Michelle Wie last year. Her height (the same is mine) is quite glaring. My fiancee of course fixated on the fact she had a couple pimples. Interesting sidenote, Annika is playing poorly and now is out for a month because of a back injury. Is it a coincidence that the LPGA is now testing for steroids?

Ben said...

#1 Iowa vs. #2 Michigan - Oct 19 1985. Best college football game I've ever seen.

RevScottDeMangeMD said...

futurelegendvinceyoung...

My dad was at the game.

Me as a fan: Game 1 and 2 of the 1990 World Series.

Me at a great game: Notre Dame vs. USC in 2005...I of course rushed the field prematurely...much like my ejaculations after that game.

Kevin said...

Only 15, so not too many of them for me...but I'd go with last year's America East championship. UAlbany's only been a D-1 school for six years, and they got to the championship game for the first time last year...and, to make things better, it was at UAlbany's gym. Easily the best atmosphere I've ever been at. Of course they won, and went on to give UConn a game in the NCAAs...

Chrisk said...

2001 ALDS Yankees vs Oakland in New York.

Dramatic comeback to take it to Game 5. The series with the Jeter flip to Posada. Game 5 had a strange feeling walking around the Stadium, Fire trucks with flashing lights people cheering fireman and police. The most intense fans at a playoff ever.
Bonus the Yanks won. the city needed that.

Geoff said...

I don't think I have ever been to a particularly memorable game. I've been to a lot of games but none that had anything special happen. Well, I was at the Palace last year for Pistons/Pacers when the game was delayed like 2+ hours due to a bomb threat. But that was only memorable because we were watching MSU beat Duke on the scoreboard then everyone booed once the actual Pistons game got underway.

Benny said...

ncaa final four in 2001

arizona had that stacked team...and duke won :'(

Lou Pickney said...

Tennessee Titans vs. New York Giants, 11/26/2006. The Titans rallied from a 21-0 fourth quarter deficit to win 24-21.

Kristopher said...

PSU/FSU Orange Bowl in 2006. Not the most well-played game, but very exciting. Plus, after suffering through some of Penn State's darkest years as a student, it was absolutely amazing to be in Miami for a New Year's and see Penn State win a bowl.

Mark said...

1) CU 62, Nebraska 36.
2) Game 7, 2001 Stanley cup finals, Avs over Devils, Bourque lifting the cup.
3) 2005 Frozen Four, DU over UND in the finals.

oddlyenough said...

1981 preseason game between Packers and Browns. I was 9, the first game I ever attended at Lambeau. Still remember GB blocking all 3 extra point attempts and winning 35-18.

Also, lots of good times in the 90's at UW-Platteville with Bo Ryan's Division III teams. 2 undefeated seasons while I was there, and only witnessed one home defeat (in the playoffs unfortunately).

DanShanoff.com said...

This comment string is absolutely incredible. I think it might be my favorite of all time. Hopefully, more readers will add in. You guys have been first-hand witness to some seriously amazing sports moments. It's made me think of other moments...

*Super Bowl 32 (Elway's 1st)

*'99 NLCS Game 5 (Ventura walk-off grand slam single)

*Northwestern-DePaul 1994 NIT First-Round Game (Yeesh...)

God this is fun.

Mark said...

NCAA Hoops game when Tyus Edney took it coast to coast to save UCLA on the way to their title. The Boise, ID crowd went nuts. I was sitting directly behind the basket he made the shot in so I had an incredible view.

Awful Announcing- said...

Gerge Mason- UCONN 2006....

Nothing will ever compare to the energy in the Phone Booth that day. I don't think the crowd would take a breath for minutes at a time.

When it went to overtime I said to my friend, "If UCONN wins....there is no god."

YAY GOD!

nep1293 said...

2005 AFC Championship Game- Patriots-Steelers

I had to drive from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh on Sunday morning for the game due to a monster snow storm that happened over the weekend. The temperature was in single digits, it was the coldest I have ever been in my life. I love being in another teams stadium. It was great to have 50,000 people hating me. Even though the steelers were 15-1 and beat the pats in the regular season, all of the fans knew what was about to happen. Every Steeler fan I talked to was already playing the "we had a great year" card. Pats won easily. Then I had to drive back to Philly and go to work the next morning. It was a crazy 24 hours for me

Eric said...

1994 World Cup Final. I was a member of the US Marine Corps Band that played the National Anthems for the 3-4 and final matches. The days leading up to the final were amazing in Pasadena. Brazilian fans en masse should be a must see for anyone. Plus as a fan of German and US national soccer it still makes me smile to recall Baggio's missed PK that lost it for Italy.

Texas Gal said...

1. Texas vs. USC, 2006 Rose Bowl
Winning a MNC at the Grandaddy of them all, watching VY do his Superman impression and shutting off the "USC is the greatest team EVAH!!!1!" talk was brilliant.

2. Texas vs. Michigan, 2005 Rose Bowl
First ever meeting of two historic programs. Cal was pissed we "took their spot" so we had a grand time beating Michigan while they lost in the Holiday Bowl.

3. Colts vs. Patriots, 2007 AFC Championship
Unfreakin'believable.

Brian in Oxford said...

Okay, how about this, since all the pro games I go to are unmemorable...

As a 12-13 year old, I went to a Pawtucket Red Sox game....the pitcher for the other team is throwing a no-hitter, they lead 4-0. So I'm thinking, well heck, if the Red Sox lose, at least I get to see a no-hitter, not so bad.

Well, immediately in the bottom of the ninth, the leadoff scrub gets a hit, so I've lost the no-hitter.

Then they push a run across, so it's 4-1 and I don't even get to see a shutout.

Well, at this point I switch my allegiance back to the home team, maybe they can come back. Another hit and I think a walk, and suddenly the bases are loaded, two outs.

Next guy hits a fly ball deep to left center. Holy bleep, a game-winning grand slam! No, the outfielder reaches over the fence to snag it.

A simple 4-1 loss. The names, not so memorable, but definitely the events.

JmanTU said...

2004 NFC Championship Phildelphia,PA.

8 inches of snow fallen the day prior and up to the game, freezing cold, Mike Vick and Atlanta in town. The only way to stay warm was to drink, be loud, and cheer on the Birds! Most memorable moments of that day were Dawkins making Crumpler crumble, and Dawkins crying while holding up the trophy!!

Unfortunetely my top first hand sports moment, is also followed by my worst first hand sports moment when Tom BRady and the Pats took out my boys in the Super Bowl.

Adam said...

1. Bears over Saints in the snow to go to the Super Bowl.

2. Reggie Bush pushes Leinart into the endzone 30 feet in front of me to shock ND stadium.

3. Miami U hockey scores 2 goals in the final 26 seconds to beat BG and make the old Goggin the loudest building I have ever been to.

Richard K. said...

Wow I have a few:

1996 Panthers vs. Avalanche Game 4

2004 Georgia Tech vs OK State in the final four (immediately followed by Duke vs. UConn which was awesome too)

Joe Montana's final game vs. Dolphins

2002 Miami vs. FSU Wide right

Randy Johnson's perfect game (Thanks Ben for offering me your spare ticket)

...

2004 Final Four was the best weekend of my life so I'll give it the top spot.

Richard K. said...

Now who can claim they were at the Fiesta Bowl this year? I'd be jealous of him.

CMFost said...

The night the Bruins reitred Phil Esposito's Number. I will never forget when Ray Bourgue took off his jersey to reveal that he switched his number to 77 that way Phil's number would officially be retired.

Andy R said...

2005 - Notre Dame vs USC. The fact that ND lost will pass...the fact that I was at the most amazing regular-season college football game I can ever think of won't.

2006 - Michigan vs Ball State. As a BSU student, it's probably the closest I'll ever get to see my team to come to true national glory. Seeing 109,000 people file out in semi-stunned silence was pretty damn gratifying.

2006 - Ball State vs Indiana. We blew a 16 point lead and lost by 1 to the Hoosiers thanks to the Emergence of Kellen Lewis, but it's the best crowd I've ever seen or ever will see as a student here.

2005 - Cubs vs Brewers. Zambrano pitches amazing and Corey Patterson makes a ridiculous play to save the game in the 7th inning.

honorable mention goes to all the other 22 Notre Dame games and the other 8 Cubs games I've attended in my life.

Ross said...

1999 - Texas A&M vs. Texas

The Bonfire Game. The school, the town and Aggies all over the country needed a win that day and the Aggies delivered. Hands down the best crowd I've ever seen at any event.
Gig 'em.

Andy said...

Well, mine is going to be pretty low key compared to all of yours but mine has to be between 3 games, and I can't decide which.

My senior year of high school, we had a pretty damn good football team but we've never been a power. Harlan, the state football powerhouse, came to our stadium to play in the quarterfinals. Our school hadn't been past the first round in over 30 years so we were already stoked. We ended up winning when Harlan missed a field goal with less than 10 seconds left. We than proceeded to get our asses handed to us in the semi's by the eventual state champion.

My freshman year at Northern Iowa, we had a pretty good football team but needed to win our last game against undefeated Southern Illinois who was ranked #2. We needed to win in order to win the conference and make the playoffs (NCAA I-AA has the playoffs, remember?). We were down 28-7 at the half and probably half the crowd left. Then, the comeback. We scored the go ahead touchdown with 25 seconds left and made the 2 pt conversion to make it a 3 point game. So. Ill. then missed a 50+ yard FG as time expired to win. Our #2 receiver ended up with 16 catches and over 251 yards, and I'll bet about 12 of those catches and +200 of those yards came in the second half alone. It was unreal.

The last choice would be back to my old highschool. This past fall they had one of the best teams in the state and were ranked in the top 5 and undefeated all year. Harlan, the same power from my senior year 4 years ago, was also undefeated. They had won the past 3 state championships, all on undefeated seasons. They hadn't lost a game since my senior year when we beat them. They came to our stadium again to play in the quarterfinals again and we won when their last second Hail Mary pass hit the ground as time ran out. It was unreal.

That's too long of a post. I'm done....

Oh, I was also at the last game of the year for the Twins last year and stayed at the Metrodome watching the Royals beat the Tigers so the Twins won the division. That was pretty cool.

oasiserfede said...

May 11th 1999 at Yankee Stadium.

Angels 9, Yankees 7

The day I became a baseball-fan forever. Since then I have fallen on hard times, which have prevented me from coming back to the US and visit more ballparks. Maybe one day........Go Yankees!

jimcaserta said...

1995 - Florida over Tennessee. Came back from down 16 to lay a 62-37 whoopin on a very good team.

1997 - Florida over FSU. FSU had the best team in 1997, but they ran into the buzzsaw named Fred Taylor. Back and forth, and lesson #1 for opposing teams never to do the Chomp.

Jim said...

The final Hartford Whalers game. I rushed the ice after the game, got hauled off by the police, and my parents had to come pick me up.

Proudest moment in my life.

Matt T said...

My personal favorite sports memory was the Georgia/Georgia Southern game in 2000 as it was my first game in a UGA Band uniform and to run down the 50 yard line in front of all of those fans was amazing.

2. UGA/UT in 2001, UGA hadn't won in Knoxville in 20 years. They were leading most of the game but UT took the lead with 1 minute left. UGA took the ball, came down the field and scored with 5 seconds left to win. There was a huge dog pile, it was amazing.

3. When Georgia won the SEC for the first time in 20 years in 2003, the crowd sounded like it was going to blow the roof off of the dome and all the flashbulbs were going off. The game was a blow out, but seeing the players celebrate afterwards and jump into the stands was great.


I agree, this is the best thread ever one here.

chitown italian said...

There are so many. The SB that I attended, the WS games, but I think last year topped it off.

AS Roma vs. Inter Milan. Roma lost but Inter had a penalty kick and the Roma goalie blanked him. All 66k fans went nuts. Plus it's kinda cool to see cops in riot gear for a match of teams from the same country.

Seth said...

July 1, 2004. Yankees-Red Sox, Yankee Stadium.

David said...

It's a tie: I saw Game 7 of the 1997 World Series, when the Marlins came back from one-down in the bottom of the ninth to win in extra-innings, and the 2000 Miami-Florida State game, Wide Right III, in which the Canes returned to the top of college football for a few years. I also saw Wide Right II and the Wide Left game of 2002, but this one, I think is more significant.

tahvi said...

Unfortunately for me, the following two games stick out in my mind. They are far from "great" in my opinion, but others may disagree.

1). As a grad. student at UF in '94, I had season football tickets. Entering the Auburn game, UF was #1 and Auburn was #6. Wuerrfel threw a pick with only minutes remaining to allow Auburn a last minute touch down and the win giving Spurrier his first SEC home loss (36-33).

(I hate Auburn.)

2). In 1990 (Spurrier's first season at UF) I was in the Gator Band and had to witness first hand the 45-3 ass kicking the Volunteers laid on the Gators at Neyland stadium (Johnny Majors was the coach at the time).

(I also hate Tennessee.)

aforward said...

2007 NCAA West Regional Hockey Championship in Denver. North Dakota vs. Minnesota, one of the biggest (if not the biggest) rivalries in college hockey. UND beat Minnesota 3-2 in OT to send the Fighting Sioux to their third straight Frozen Four. Being there was awesome.

David said...

College football: 1978 Nebraska-Oklahoma. Frigid weather, big stakes, big upset, and the hardest-hitting football game I've ever seen.

Bacon said...

Instantly thought of the '99 A&M-Texas game when I saw this. Interesting that 2 others have already posted.

Runner-up would be '98 A&M-Nebraska. Nebraska came in ranked #2 I think, and A&M had an ugly recent history of falling short against top 10 teams. We spanked Nebraska, but it kind of lost its luster when it turned out Neb was not the team everyone thought it would be earlier in the year.

Matthew said...

Down 6-1 at the start of the third, my high school hockey team scored 6 goals in the final period; the winning goal coming with less than one second left. Oh yeah, it snapped a 41-game losing streak.

Keith said...

Oh, one non-hockey moment for me:

The first Baltimore Ravens at Pittsburgh Steelers game. (Oddly enough, the only Steeler game I ever saw in Three Rivers.)

The Cleveland Browns fans were out in force, but the mood was more like a wake than a rivalry. We had a common enemy now. Especially after word spread through the tailgates that Art Modell chickened out and skipped a game in Pittsburgh for the first time since nobody remembered when.

The game itself was a laugher. Rod Woodson terrorized Vinny Testaverde all day. The biggest cheer of the fourth quarter came when the PA announcer "accidentally" called "Time out, Cleveland."

As a game, it wasn't so great, but a great rivalry moment.

Marcus T said...

Didn't we already do this?

Anyway, I have no problem repeating it. July 28th, 2001; my birthday. Pirates over Astros 9-8 in the first game of a day night double header at PNC Park. I was sitting about 15 rows back along the third base line.

The Pirates trailed 8-2 starting the bottom of the ninth. Then the following happened:

Flyout
Flyout
Double
2-run HR
Single
Walk
RBI Single
~Wagner enters~
HBP
then...

WHAM!!!!!!! Giles hits a walk off grand slam. I was going nuts along with the few people who actually remained to watch the rest of the game. By far the best feeling I have ever had as a sports fan.

Tom said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
La Rev said...

Zags-Arizona in the tourney, 2003.

Tom said...

Ripken's 2,131st consecutive game - Seats were just a few rows behind homeplate. There was also the Giants/Ravens Superbowl and countless Yanks WS games in the last decade... all were with my Dad.

Scooter McGavin said...

Greg Swindell's very first game where he gave up eight runs in 0 innings of work. By my math that's an ERA of infinity. I started the game in the upper deck and was five rows from the field by the 7th inning stretch.

nati said...

I, Guyinthecorner, have four....

1. August 21, 1993 Rangers 5 at Orioles 6 (12 inn.)
Nolan Ryan in his last game in Baltimore vs. Ben McDonald. My first baseball game, went with my dad and grandfather. Harold Reynolds homered for the O's in the bottom 9th to tie it and Mark McLemore singled in the winning run in the bottom 12th. Julio Franco also homered.

2. September 30, 2001 Orioles 1 at Yankees 1 (15 inn)
Would have been Cal's last game, but because of 9/11, a series with the Red Sox was cancelled and then added to the end of the season so Cal finished at home. Clemens pitched, and I sat 1st row behind home plate with my girlfriend. Clemens pitched, Bernie homered in bottom 4th and Chris Richard homered in top 6th. After that there were 4 rain delays and no runs until they called it after 15. Game ended in a tie.

3. February 26, 2001 Covenant Life 50 at Hebrew Academy 58
My school won our conference basketball championship on the same night that our star player won league MVP and scored his 1000 career point. 1000 people packed into our 500 seat gym. Our team was down 5 in the 2nd until our point guard hit 3's on 4 straight plays followed by our star hitting a 3 followed by our center hitting a sky hook. 17-0 run in 1:37.

4. August 23, 2006 Beaverton, Oregon 4 at Lemont, Illinois 3
In this Little League World Series United States Semi-Final game, we had an interesting situation. 2 kids from Beaverton combined for a no hitter. Yes the score was 4-3. Oh yeah, and there was a 3-2 count in the last inning with the bases loaded and if there had been some sort of error they could have lost while keeping the no hitter.

Sherry said...

Game 4 of the 2004 ALCS at Fenway. The dave Roberts stolen base and Big papi's homerun changed the whole tide of the series.

Chris said...

Dan,

The biggest Florida Bandwagon jumper/apologist any of us has ever seen says the 1996 Rose Bowl (featuring your alma mater Northwestern) is the biggest sporting event you've ever witnessed live? Didn't you renounce your Wildcat ties to jump on the Gator train? That should disqualify your Rose Bowl entry. I know, I know, I'm nitpicking.

As for mine it would be the 2006 Orange Bowl (triple OT, Penn State vs. Florida State, JoePa vs. Bobby) you know, because I graduated from Penn State, and think a person should remain loyal to their alma mater. No matter how good or bad their sports programs are. However, I'm sure I'm hopelessly mis-guided that way.

Luke Bell said...

I had two Badger Rose Bowls in the Dayne era, the 1st of which I was 7 rows from the field. I got to give Lynn Swan a high five. It was also the 1st "last game" of Keith Jackson, who has since retired and unretired more than Michael Jordan.

I was also at the game where Dayne broke the NCAA all time rushing record, but I was way too drunk at that to consider it the best.

I think my all time favorite was Penn State at Wisconsin, the last game of the year, with the Badgers needing a win to go to the Rose Bowl. It started to snow, and the place went even more nuts than it was before. Then they played "Jump Around," unwittingly starting the tradition of playing that after every 3rd quarter (I don't know how much of that is known on a national level, but they show it on every friggin broadcast now. Oh, and the Badgers won and went on to the Rose Bowl against UCLA.

Joshua C. King said...

Just this past December, I was at the UCLA over USC game at the Rose Bowl. As someone who just graduated from UCLA having lost to USC all four years, it was amazing to finally do it and knock them out of the national title game at the same time.

I was at the UCLA/Memphis elite eight game the previous year, which was ugly and all defense, but awesome because we won.

I was at the 2003 AFC Championship game between the Raiders and Titans, which was actually an underrated game.

My biggest regret in life to this point is not forcing myself to hand over the cash needed to attend Lakers/Suns Game 4 of the first round last year, when Kobe hit two improbable shots to win it.

Seth said...

Red Sox-Yanks July 1, 2004
Jeter's Catch
Just ELECTRIC in that stadium, big players making big plays, including Flaherty with the last RBI single. Some moments I will never forget!

Johnathan said...

Mickey Morendini's (sorry i can't spell his last name) unassisted triple play in three rivers

Penn State in Nebraska in 03 it was amazing to see the nittany Lions take revenge on Nebraska for stealing that national championship in the 90's

Penn State Ohio State in 01 when JoePa broke the wins record; I can still close my eyes and see Zach Mills break that long run

Brian said...

Indiana's upset of Duke in the 2002 Sweet Sixteen in Lexington. One of the many highlights was Kentucky fans actually pulling FOR the Hoosiers, because they hated Duke more. (This, after they showed up to the open practice just to boo Duke out of Rupp.)

bird said...

This is going to surprise a number of friends and family members, but the greatest sporting event I witnessed first-hand was NOT a Gator athletic event (although there were some great ones). I was at the 1985 game between the Dolphins and the Bears--it was the pride of the 1972 undefeated Dolphins team on the line against the Bears, who were undefeated to that point in the season (they subsequently won the Super Bowl that year). To add to the excitement, it was a Monday Night Football appearance, and the game was at the Orange Bowl (can you say old-time football atmosphere?). The Dolphins, who were underdogs, won, preserving the honor of the '72 team, and I still have a VHS copy of the game somewhere in storage!

Greg said...

November 1998, UT vs. aTm, Austin, Texas.

The question wasn't IF the record would be broken, but by how much.

Ricky Williams running left toward the end zone to break the NCAA career rushing record. I don't know that I ever heard the place so loud before or since.

Almost eight years later (Jan. 2006), I went back to DKR-Texas Memorial Stadium for the UT Championship Rally after the Rose Bowl. Over 30,000 people gave a standing ovation upon the entrance of a longhorn steer. And I remembered why I loved the school so much.

David said...

Game 6 of the 1995 World Series. Braves beat the Indians 1-0 to win the series.

Qwagmire said...

Fiesta Bowl, this year. Went with friend from OU, but after the game we knew it was somethign special.

BpL - Beacon, NY said...

Well I haven't attend too many pro sporting events. I did attend Yankee Stadium in 1995(I believe) on the day Mickey Mantle died. That was a very somber day.

I live a few minutes away from the Hudson Valley Renegades, a short-season Class A affiliate of the Renegades ... I've worked there for the last 6 years as well; but I did see 2 great moments there ... in '00) Doug Waechter pitched a no-hitter(the only one in their history) and in '99 the team won the NY-Penn League Title. I know it's only short-season Class A ball, but it was still awesome.

In high school, my boys' basketball won their only regional final(or something like that) to make it to the state final 4. I saw their win in the regional final and the loss in the final four game ... both games were awesome, even though they lost the last one. I was a part of a great moment for my HS tennis team, but I don't think actually performing in the great moment counts, hah.

BobbyStompy said...

Bears-Browns, from that '01 fluke Bears season where the Bears went 13-3.

Mike Brown picked a pass in overtime, and ran straight into the tunnel after scoring the game winning touchdown. This was all after a huge comeback in regulation.

AND the Yankees lost the World Series to the D-Backs that day.

Top 10 sporting day of my life.

mcam09 said...

A few memorable ones:

1995 ALDS Games 1-2

Donnie Baseball finally in the playoffs and connects for a HR. I have never heard Yankee Stadium louder.

Game 2 Jim Leyritz begins his legacy, ending the game in the rain in teh bottom of the 15th.

1996 WS Game 6

Winning that first title was great especially after being at the first 2 games and getting slaughtered.

2002 NBA 1st Round Game 5

Nets finally make the playoffs, pushed to the limit by the 8 seed Pacers. Reggie Miller hits shots at end of regulation and 1st OT to continue game. Nets finally prevail and ride wave to the finals.

2000 NFC Divisional Round

Giants beat Philly, I could not make the NFC Champ, but beating Philly is always sweet.

1998 Broncos at Giants

Giants end hopes of perfect season when Kent Graham hits Amani Toomer for a 30 Yd TD with under 2 minutes to play. A great game in the midst of a terrible season by the Gmen.

Chris said...

#1 - 2006 Rose Bowl - Texas 41 USC 38 (the Vince Young show)

#2 - Game 5, 2004 ALCS - BoSox 5 NYY 4 (Ortiz single in the 14th)

#3 - 1993 NCAA Championship - UNC 77 Michigan 71 (CWebb's TO)

James said...

I was at the 2005 Texas @ Ohio State football game, which was pretty good.

Also sat on the floor when OSU beat Illinois at the end of the '05 basketball season to spoil the Illini's undefeated season. That was awesome.

But my personal fave would be any of the three Purdue football victories over Notre Dame I've been to.

James said...

Holy cow, almost forgot. The "almost" biggest moment in sports I've seen.

I was at Nolan Ryan's first attempt at 300 wins, playing against the Yankees. Rangers were down by one or two in the bottom of the sixth and everyone knew Ryan was done for the night. Texas get's a couple guys on base and with two outs the batter blasts one to deep right and the entire crowd sucks in a deep breath, willing the ball to get over the fence. But it was not to be as Jesse Barfield pulled it in with one hand on the fence. Followed by the entire crowd letting out the "oooohhhhh".

Rangers ending up winning in extra innings at like 1 in morning and nobody freaking cared.

Steve said...

The Penn State win over Ohio State 17-10 in 2005. Both teams were undefeated heading into the game, with PSU the big underdog and Joe Pa still fighting off demands to retire. 110,000 Penn State fans mostly clad in white saw the Lions beat Troy Smith, AJ Hawk, and the Buckeyes en route to a #3 ranking and an Orange Bowl victory. The insanely loud crowd lead Kirk Herbstreit to call the PSU students "the best student section in the country".

Jason said...

Jim Abbott's no hitter against the Indians, despite the notable handicap of having one hand.

When Cubs Cry is a running blog said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jack Kidd said...

This has to be Kerry Wood's 20 strikeout game against the Astros in 1998. It was early in the season, and not many people were there, which is a rarity at Wrigley. There was such an electric feeling that day, it will never be forgotten.

Too bad he stinks now...

OnlyInboards.com said...

Game 7 of the '85 World Series with my dad, 7th row seats behind 1st base. Dad died a few years later and i will never forget that game as long as I live.

Biebs said...

Jim Abbott's no hitter. Just an absolutely cool event, and I was only 10 then and he was my favorite player at the time. All I canr eally remember was Freddy Sez, banking on his steel drum with his spoon... "6 More Outs... 3 More Outs..."

The Jets Vs. Dolphins, first game I went to - Jets win 51-45 - just good times all around.

The Spike, as a Jet fan, the most brutal sports moment I've ever witnessed live.

TBender said...

This has to be Kerry Wood's 20 strikeout game against the Astros in 1998. It was early in the season, and not many people were there, which is a rarity at Wrigley. There was such an electric feeling that day, it will never be forgotten.

This is my greatest event witnessed via radio, and I only heard the last 3 innings.

Got off of work and into the car and the crowd noise was unbelieveable. You could barely hear Milo and Ashby. It took awhile before they would say what was going on. Every strike call was cheered like they were closing out a WS title.

Troy said...

In light of the recent Bulls Big Mac game, I have an additional

Runner-UP: UF basketball vs. Eckard, 11/9/04. 90-70. UF used to have a policy that if the team scored 90 in a home game, everyone in attendance got free Subway the next day. The game was ridiculously poorly played, and not exciting at all, but when Billy put in the walk-ons they went on a run, the crowd starting getting into the game, and with a few seconds left we got the ball back with 87 points. Jack Berry got the ball and at the buzzer nailed a 3 for the 90 points. The place legitimately went nuts. It was a bit dickish to cheer so loudly for beating a crummy team by 20, but it was still some of the most fun I've had at a game.

(And then a couple weeks later Berry hit a 2 at the end of a game to beat FAU 90-45. He still has the nickname on campus of "Subway Jack.")

Seth said...

I've got a 1A to go along with 7-4-04 Yanks-Sox. I-AA playoffs in football, William and Mary vs. Delaware at WM. Delaware took command in the first half going up 31-10 by the start of the fourth quarter. The Tribe stormed back in the fourth to tie it up at 31. Both teams scored in the first OT and Tribe had the ball to start the second. Scored easily on a running play, then our All-American level kicker shanks the XP, his first miss all year. But the Tribe D held and we won 44-38. That was my proudest college sports moment, we rushed the field and painted the town red, it felt like I'd imagine it does for your big time programs. LOVED THAT GAME AND REFUSE TO FORGET IT! GO TRIBE!

Troy said...

@ chris: you were at all three of those? Holy crap, you win.

George said...

College Hockey:
St. Lawrence @ arch rival Clarkson in the fall of 1998. CU scored 3 goals in the 3rd period for a dramatic come-from-behind win. Crowd was going crazy. Erik Cole (now a Hurricane) scored two in the third. SLU fans that were talking trash most of the game had a nice walk of shame after the final buzzer. Making the win so much sweeter.

Todd said...

UM over OSU in 1997 to send them to the Rose Bowl. Ah, the good old days.

Mark said...

Definitely watching George Mason beat UConn at the Verizon Center in DC on 03/26/2006. Incredible to see the most unlikely Final Four team in a long while (if not ever) cut down the nets so close to home.

TF said...

2005 Final Four will always stick out for ovious reasons.

I was also at Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals in 2004

As far as close down to the wire games, the 2002 Auburn/Florida game. Florida was a having a terrible season (Zook's 1st year) and needed to get off the skid. Zook went for it on 4 and 1 with one minute left. Auburn drove and got their kick blocked. Grossman his Jacobs in OT to win.

Craig R. said...

2003 ALCS game 7, seated on the left field line about 20 rows back from where Booney's shot went

1994 NBA Eastern Conf Championships Game 7. Patrick takes the Knicks to the promised land

2003 Rocket's 300th win and 4,000 K (along with Tino's return to Yankee Stadium)

I will never admit to being at game 7 of the 2004 ALCS as I've had it permanently removed from my memory

Todd said...

I saw Derek Lowe's no-hitter. The game wasn't fantastic by any means, but it's "rareness" factor probably vaults that to the top.

Also was at the Stanley Cup Finals game where Kariya got knocked out, then came back later and scored a goal... that was pretty sweet.

Worst ever was Troy Bell's final game at BC, where we got thumped by UCONN...

J Fitty said...

seth...gotta love bringing the TRIBE into the mix!

Dave Jackson said...

Dodger Stadium 2005 -- Pedro Martinez takes a no-hitter and 1-0 lead into the eighth inning. Antonio Perez hits a one-out triple that barely eludes Gerald Williams' glove in center field. Jayson Werth hits the next pitch for a two-run homer. Brad Penny goes the distance and outduels Martinez 2-1 on a beautiful, sunny day in one of the most beautiful sports venues ever built.

DJ

Scott said...

two games (both in '99):

2/24/99 maryland-clemson at cole field house. steve francis played out of his mind scoring 32pts including several highlight dunks. plus clemson got a technical on a hard foul and their coach rushed the court and had to be restrained by the officials from going after francis. just a lot of electricity in the building.

8/9/99 phillies-cardinals at the vet. jd drew returned to philly, but larussa sat him the first game of the series. fernando tatis hit a grandslam & it was 11-2 cards after 4 innings. lots of booing that night.

Kage said...

Game 2 - 2005 World Series. When Podsednik hit the walk off HR off of Lidge. People say Pujols hit killed him, but you gotta think that THEN giving up a walk off to the lead-off hitter was what really cemented him into basket-case status

thistlewarrior said...

A couple come to mind...

HHS beating Princeton HS in 1994 and winning the GMC.

WKU winning final home game and going undefeated in the OVC. We carried the goal posts down Big Red Way.

In 2003, football game at HHS when we had a moment of silence for two former players (and friends) that had died in the past year in the Army. Also, a former BB player was there to be honored for a bronze star that he had earned in the taking of Bagdad.

jingo said...

ESPY winner, 2004 ALCS Game 5, Fenway Park. Sox-Yankees. 14 Innings. Freezing cold. V-tek couldn't catch the knucklball. 2nd walkoff in the same day for David Ortiz.

Best. Game. Ever.

thistlewarrior said...

Best one I was nearly at?

My parents were sitting in prime blue seats at Riverfront Stadium the night Pete Rose broke Ty Cobbs hit record while I was stuck at my aunt's being baby-sat! BOO!

Justin said...

The BCS National Championship game in the Fiesta Bowl 2003 with The Ohio State Buckeyes beating the Miami Hurricanes. The game went into 2 overtimes with the Buckeyes coming out on top 31-24 to claim the 2002 National Championship.

It was crazy to be there, felt like 80% of the fans at the game were Ohio State fans.

C.West said...

I havn't been to many great sports moments. So for me it was the year the Flyers got swept by the Red wings in teh Stanley cvup finals. I was at game 5 of the Eastern conference championship where the Flyers beat the Rangers to advance to the finals. I was also at game 2 the week before where the Rangers won.

Spaceman_Spiff said...

Suns at Nuggets 2006 Triple OT game courtside next to Melo's fiance LaLa. The ref kept giving the ball to my son during the stopages and TO's.

scott (austin, tx) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
T-Storm said...

Last year I would have said UM-OSU '97, but after last year's Tigers' run I have to change my tune. Seeing them close out the Yankees and taking part in the celebration that ensued was as great an in-stadium vibe as I've ever dreamed of.

scott (austin, tx) said...

i grew up in portland oregon and with no home team to call my own, when my family got cable in '84 i was 9 years old and instantly became a huge cubs fan (thanks to wgn, ryne sandberg and a rare playoff year for the cubs).

later, in my junior year in high school, my dad took my brother and i to wrigley for a 4 game series with the cardinals in late september. the cubs were already 30-some game out and going nowhere but the i still remember how exciting those games were.

the middle two-games of the series were played as a saturday double-header and in between the two games they filmed some scenes for the movie 'rookie of the year' and had everyone chanting the kid's name (henry, i think) as he took the mound for the first time.

when the second game started, the cubs pitcher (can't even remember who it was) gave up 4 or 5 runs in the first few innings and all of a sudden the whole park started chanting, "henry, henry, henry..." it was the one of the coolest and funniest things i've ever seen at a game.

but that wasn't even the best part. the cubs fought back and were only 2 down in the late innings. it was getting late (both games were really long games) and a lot of people had already gone home, so my brother and i snuck down and ended up in the front row just off the cubs dugout where the on-deck circle is.

when sandberg (who had become my personal jesus) took his warm up swings in the on-deck circle he was so close i could have touched him. and when he came up in the 9th inning the cubs were still only down by 2 with 1 on and 1 out and lee smith was pitching for the cardinals. i can't remember the pitch count but ryno hit a game tying homerun into the left field bleachers and wrigley went crazy.

of course the cubs ended up losing in the 10th, but even though i was only 16 years old i would have died happily that night.

Chocolate Squirrels said...

1991 Final Four. Duke topples undefeated UNLV in the national semifinal (the REAL national championship game), then takes care of business against Kansas.

milrey76 said...

2005 Capital One Bowl, Iowa vs. LSU.

Tate to Holloway as time expired for a 55 yard touchdown. Most incredible thing i've ever seen live, and really, how many times do you think you'll ever get a chance to see a game ending hail mary work.

I remember all the Iowa Fans yelling for a time out when they realized the clock was running after the penalty, and the entire stadium holding its breath as the pass left Drew's hands. We were sitting on the side lines behind LSU's bench, on teh side of the field Holloway streaked down, we say him open, and once he caught the ball the Black and Gold clad fans exploded, the entire Iowa team ran to the endzone to hog pile and lift Holloway up on their shoulders.

The moment and looking at pictures from it still give me goosebumps.

On a side note, that 2004 Hawkeye team is my favorite team of all time. More than the Chuck Long teams, more than the Matt Rogers to Tim Dwight teams, more than the Banks and Clark lead Big Ten Champs from 2002. I mean, in 2004, they did it with their 6th string running back, a sophomore QB, and one of the best Dlines in the schools history. Every game was so much fun, because you really had no idea how they were doing it and pulling off these huge wins. Bonus points for kciking the crap out of Ohio State in Iowa City that year.

Matt said...

Game 3, 1988 ALCS Boston @ Oakland. I was 12 and my Dad got two tickets from work. Oakland was down 5-0 before coming back to win 10-6. The official attendance is listed at 49,000+, but I don't recall seeing a single empty seat and everyone was into the game. Been hooked on playoff baseball ever since.

Blockage said...

Mizzou-Nebraska football when the ball got kicked up and Davidson dove across the back of the endzone to snag the game tying touchdown. I was in the endzone where it happened getting ready to run onto the field to celebrate. Unreal.

priano said...

Home Run Derby at Fenway in 1999. McGwire was crushing, just killing, the ball and the excitement in the crowd was awesome. Good times in the bleachers.

Adam said...

The most fascinating thing about this board is that everyone could care less to comment on games that other people have been to. Remembering the smells, the sounds, the nervousness and excitement of these games we witnessed is too personal to express what it means to each individual. But, without fail, rather than envy or care about moments attached to their specific games, the stories help us recall a game that we can attach the same level of personal importance too.

Jake said...

Texas vs. Michigan, 2005 Rose Bowl. Came in a rabid Michigan fan, left still a Michigan fan but in utter awe of Vince Young. Never seen a guy do what he did that day before. It was like a preview of the 2006 Championship game. A man among boys.

SF said...

10/30/04...Michigan vs. Michigan State Football...Braylon Edwards went for like 697 yards and 54 TDs in the wild comeback 45-37 3OT win. I feel bad for all the idiots that left that game early...WOW!

Tacomaker said...

Game 6 1998 Finals, Jordan's (should have been) last shot. I'll never forget the hush of the crowd as Jordan stole the ball from Malone to set up that possession. Everyone in the Delta Center knew what was going to happen next. Stupid me wasted my other ticket on my then-wife...

Also, the 2003 Final Four in New Orleans was a great experience. Me and my buddy were expecting the Marquette blowout after we saw D-Wade and posse hitting the French Quarter late Friday night.

Bladder said...

Another one that came to mind... Jets season finale in 2002. No one is watching the first 5 minutes as we're all waiting the end of the Miami Vs. New England game... The crowd absolutely erupts when Weinstadt basically hands the game to the Pats. Then the Jets go out and absolutely beat the shit out of the Packers 42-17 - That was the most electric I've ever see a Jets crowd...

Grimey said...

I was at Nebraska-Missouri in '97 also, sitting in the student section.

For one thing, Mizzou fans had already gotten into a habit of tearing down the goalposts that year, so the stadium had set up some deterrents (they were like high-powered sprinklers) to keep people from rushing the field. But everyone in that stadium thought that the ball had hit the ground, and a little water wasn't going to keep them from taking down the goalposts after taking out the number one team in the nation (a team they hadn't beaten in over a decade).

stooncer said...

I was at the Lakers vs. Mavs game in 2003 when the Lakers were down by 30 late in the third quarter and charged back to win the game. I've never been in a place so loud in all my life. The fans that stayed feverishly mocked those who thought it was a lost cause and walked out. I lost my voice from yelling so loudly, but still woke up my wife to tell her all about it when I got home.

Mr. Thursday said...

All of my games, sadly, pale in comparison to this list, but in my never-ending jealousy, my father was at Game 5 of the 1993 World Series. As a Phils fan, this was one of the most formative events of my life.

Nathan said...

I wouldn't say the game was great, considering I'm a Cub fan, but I was at the infamous "Bartman Game." We were sitting in the upper deck right above Bartman at the game. The situation was so bad that the in-house televisions stopped showing the replay of the interference after the first time. Then the fans in the 400 section started throwing their beer over the railing onto Bartman's section. It's amazing to see what hundreds of cups of beer look like in mid air. Granted, if Alex Gonzalez would have turned the double play that next at bat, the Cubs would have been in the World Series and Steve Bartman would still be showing his face these days.

Ferocious Bluebird said...

Mine probably has all of yours beat and it was a tie game in the end.

In 1994, I lived in Moscow and their hockey team is the Moscow Penguins, but in Russian is is pronounced "Seska" and looks like "4CKA" in cyrillic. My father and I would go to their games every so often. The first game I went to a team called the Soviet Wings came in and beat them 5-3 so I bought a Soviet Wings Jersey. But I still had to follow the Penguins because they were the home team.

The Best Team in the league was Dynamo, who had powder blue D's on their chest. From the onset of the game you could tell there was a lot of tension in the air. The penguins were good but no one expected them to beat Dynamo and to make it worse there was a whole section of the stadium where Dynamo fans had managed to get tickets. So they were shouting for Dynamo when the rest of us belted out "4CKA". I envy my friend Danny who was the DJ for the games because he had a front ice view, but it actually blocked him from seeing one of the best moments in the game.

Dynamo dominated on defense for the first two periods, not letting the Penguins get any time to create shots. Dynamo managed to put in two goals in the first two periods, and with 2:00 left it looked like a sure shut out loss for the Penguins. But with 1:53 left, the Penguins managed to score their first goal. The crowd went nuts but we knew it was too little too late. The Dynamo fans tried to rub it in and they ended up getting in a fight in the stands. The Penguin fans jumped them and a brawl broke out. (this is what Danny would have missed). One guy went tumbling down the stairs and eventually everything was sorted out, but we were worried that we would have to leave (not safe to be diplomats in such an environment). But once it was calmed down, play commenced. The refs, for some odd reason were letting Dynamo get away with pushing and shoving and the crowd was getting annoyed with it. A stoppage of play was called when the puck was frozen by the DYnamo goalie with about thirty seconds left on the clock. Penguin fans started to throw bottles of beer on the ice out of frustration. Green glass shattered everywhere. It looked as if the Penguins might have to forfeit if the glass could not get cleaned off the ice. Eventually Dynamo's whole zone was covered with glass and thirty seconds remained on the clock. But the Penguin Players wanted a chance to win, so they went around collecting the broken glass and getting it off the ice. It was one of the most surreal things I had ever seen. After about ten minutes they had made the surface safe enough to play, the refs examined it, and the shoot out happened in their offensive zone. Dynamo won the faceoff and sent the puck down center ice so the Penguins would have to get onside. They sent their defenders down to pressure the Penguins. One of their forwards took the puck on a pass from center ice with about ten seconds left on the clock. He pushed his way through as two defenders tried to hack his stick, but somehow he kept going through and the puck slipped past. As he got near the goalie he flipped a shot. It hit off the goalies blocker and right back onto the forwards stick about midshaft, bounced over the goalie's head and into the net. 1 second left on the clock.

The whole stadium collectively jumped and cheered. The amount of elation was unbelievable. We had tied it in the last second of the game to send it to overtime in one of the most enduring games I had ever seen. No one scored in the overtime, but seeing the regulation was enough, and the crowd cheered even more when that overtime was over. Not winning was enough to swallow after the amazing night we had witnessed.

It might be one of those things that you had to be their for, but I have seen baseball, American Hockey, Football games, and basketball games that have never compared to that one hockey game in the middle of the Russian Winter.

OchoCinco said...

I would have to say when Cincinnati played Kentucky in 2005 March Madness in Indianapolis. My mom and two brother love Kentucky and my dad, myself and my other brother love Cincinnati. I went when I was a senior in high school with my brother who was a year behind me and was a huge UK fan. The game was absolutely NUTS and UK was a pretty solid favorite but UC hung around and even led at halftime. There were more UK fans but there were still a lot of UC fans. Even though UC lost I will never forget the game because after every basket the place went nuts. My brother and I really bonded that day.

The other one would be the Bengals first playoff game in forever in 2006. Everyone knows what happened in that game, but the absolute silence in Paul Brown Stadium after Carson was down was sickening. Even the Steelers fans that went to the game didn't speak. On my way back to Ohio University that night I passed a Palmer Road exit sign and wanted to cry.

P Cody said...

2004 Crosstown Shootout with Xavier barely edging the Bearcats. We carried that momentum all the way to the Elite that year. It was awesome being in the student section for that game.

spartymike said...

Game 1, 1988 World Series. Kirk Gibson.

What game do I wish I was at? I would have given a finger to be in the gym for Spencerport/Greece Athena, Feb. 16, 2006 to watch Jason McElwain drop twenty.

Samuel said...

1997. The Greatest Game Ever Played at The Swamp. Florida 32 - Florida State 29. The drunk in front of me insisted on screaming "This ain't no Wake Forrest baby!" after each Florida defensive stop. I could clearly hear him amid the rest of howling fans. By the thrid quarter the alcohol and first half's burning sun calmed him to a near sleep.

A gaffe with the video screen led us to sing "We are the boys" twice for the only time in history at the end of third and beginning of fourth quarters.

The Gators' big play offense struggled for most of the day until a 3 play 80 drive late in the 4th that resulted in the game winning score. The subsequent FSU drive ended with an interception. There was such an explosion of energy from the crowd I though we'd crumble the walls of the stadium. I get goose bumps just thinking about it.

Jen said...

1997 Division Series, Game 5. Indians vs. Yankees. We had front row bleacher seats and heckled Paul O'Neill so much that he flipped us off. Jaret Wright got his second win of the series and we deny the Yanks of advancing. The Indians go to the World Series and can't get it done, thanks to Jose Mesa.

Runner-up:
Ohio State vs. Penn State in 2001.

Jen said...

@sf:
How come Braylon Edwards doesn't do that for the Browns!? LOL

Jason Hogan said...

Great post topic. I've really enjoyed strolling down memory lane with all the great posts.

I've only teared up at two sporting events in my life. Two moments I will never forget:

May 19, 2005, Conseco Fieldhouse. Reggie Miller's last game. My family moved to Indianapolis in 1987 - Reggie's rookie season. He will always be my childhood sports hero. The ovation was amazing. Especially memorable was Larry Brown taking a second timeout to extend the ovation, and the entire Piston and Pacer benches standing on the court and clapping.

February 4, 2007, Hoosier Dome (RCA - never!) Colts-Pats AFC Championship game. Even if you just examine the game itself inside a bubble, that was the best professional sports game I've ever attended in person. Then when you add in the history and baggage that Indianapolis had been carrying with the Colts-Pats rivalry, that games was as close to "sports-fan euphoria" as I could ever imagine.

whitey said...

1999 WORLD SERIES GAME 2--braves got rolled by the yankees 7-2 or some such. didn't even really care...except that i hate the yankees. it was all about being there for the presentation of the team of the century before the game. every single living stud was on the field. pretty surreal. then on the way home everyone on the radio was going insane about the way jim gray had treated pete rose. we were completely oblivious to what had happened.

it was pretty fun watching bama spank the gators in the sec championship about 2 months later too.

The heroin sheik said...

I would have to say the most fun I have ever had at a sporting event was the year after UF won our first title in football. We lost to LSU and UGA and our season was pretty much in the crapper and no one gave us any chance at beating FSU even though it was at the swamp. When we came back to win at the end of the game the streets were absolutely jam packed with crazy fans. I honestly think it was wilder than after any of our nat'l championships.

However the biggest event I have ever seen firsthand was Scotland beating England to clinch the five nation cup in rugby back in 90. After the match the entire 70k plus fans marched from Murrayfield to Waverly Gardens singing and chanting about how superior we are to the world.

Ryan said...

Probably the most collectively emotional event I've ever attended was the 2001 Pepsi 400. I'm not a NASCAR fan, but my dad is and our family was on vacation to Florida and he scored 4 tickets. I was familiar with everything about the sport as many of my friends and family members are big Dale Earnhardt fans. Of course, the Daytona 500 earlier in the year was the race that Earnhardt would sustain his fatal injuries in.

Anyway, Dale Earnhardt, Jr. was the crowd's sentimental favorite, for obvious reasons. As the race was winding down, he took the lead with Michael Waltrip behind him. We were sitting off of turn 4 and as they cam around for the checkered flags, everyone was hugging and crying and high fiving and it was unbelievable. I found myself getting caught up in it. I was screaming, standing on my seat and high fiving my dad, who was already a huge Dale Earnhardt, Jr. fan. Amazing experience.

As for other sports...I've been to several great Cardinals-Cubs games. I'm a Cardinals fan...so the greatest Cardinals-Cubs game I ever attended was last August 27. Backup catcher Gary Bennett hits a walkoff grand slam to beat the Cubbies. The ball landed right below me in the bullpen and I can see myself hopping around on the ESPN broadcast...haha.

I've also attended Game 1 of the '04 NLDS between the Cards-Dodgers in which the Cardinals won the game easily. And hten I went to Game 2 of the '05 NLDS between the Cards and Padres, which was the last game I attended in old Busch.

34 said...

The Puckett game (1991 WS game 6).

I wasn't at game 7 which might have been even better, but game 6 was an awsome experience. The game was close, Puckett had the catch against the wall, and there was an incredible energy in extra innings when Kirby came to bat again. When he connected, there was just a deafening explosion of noise and the celebaration went on well into the night.

Hands-down my favorite live event ever.

Andrew said...

#4 Wisconsin @ Michigan State. November 13th, 2004.

This is the kind of game that makes college football so great. Wisconsin was having an amazing undefeated season and came into the game with tons of momentum and a heavy favorite. It was senior night and a game under the lights at Spartan Stadium in East Lansing, and the 4-5 Spartans absolutely destroyed the Badgers 49-14. The game included an 8 play(!) - due to a penalty on 4th and 2 to go - goal line stand from the 1 yard line by the Spartans, as well as 2nd half opening onside kick by MSU that was topped off by Drew Stanton running onto the field whipping the crowd into a frenzy for his first snaps in 2 1/2 games after he went out with a shoulder injury against Michigan in Ann Arbor (also an amazing game) a few games earlier. Just an amazing college football atmosphere with the student section jacked for the entire game.

I've never seen a better game in person.

Michigan State may have been underachievers for a long time before and since, but that night they were arguably the best team in college football. Just one of those nights. Amazing.

http://msuspartans.cstv.com/
sports/m-footbl/recaps/
111304aab.html

Sons of a Motherless Goat said...

1997 Michigan (10-0) vs. OSU (10-1) football game at the Big House. Woodson returns punt for TD down the same sideline that Desmond Howard did 6 years earlier, causing Buckeye nation to have the largest collective moment of deja vu in history. Game cinches Heisman for Woodson (just as the 1991 game did for Howard).

TP said...

Oddly enough, the 2003 ECAC hockey championships. My alma mater Cornell was down one, pulled the goalie, and scored to push the game into overtime, where they won. Absolutely electric.

Also, Gil's game winning three vs. the Bucks on January 3 this year. That is the loudest noise I've ever heard.

Sorry I'm too young and poor to afford tickets to good games.

Brent said...

1. Nolan Ryan 300th Win. 7/30/90 Milwaukee, WI
2. Red Sox/Yankees ALCS Game 5 2004 Fenway Park, to send it back to New York.
3. NFC title Game Packers/Panthers 1/12/97, Green Bay WI
4. AFC title Game Colts/Patriots 1/18/4, Foxboro, MA
5. Plenty of others that are great memories.

mark said...

Oct 27, 2002 - Cowboys vs Seahawks. Emmitt became the NFL's all time leading rusher. Yes I'm a Cowboy homer. But realizing what I was seeing gave me goose bumps.

jorgedingo said...

For me, the top two contenders are easy. Picking just one is a little tougher.

Wings win the 1998 Cup for Vladdie vs. 2006 World Series

Essentially, I like hockey just a little more than I like baseball. However, as my first love, I think I get more emotional over baseball. Essentially, my dad took me to loads of Tiger games over the years, so there's a strong emotional connection to baseball games. But I've still never seen a Wings game in-person at the Joe. (Weird, I know.)

Still, just going to Game 1 of a World Series the Tigers eventually lost can't top being there the night your team wins it all. There's no better way to feel like you're a part of something bigger than yourself. That night remains one of the top 5 moments of my life.

Now, talk to me around Halloween, when I'm celebrating with a million Tiger fans in Hart Plaza. Might be a different story...

jd said...

First time commenter.
I'm a Pittsburgh/PSU fan.

1) Ohio State at Penn State, 10/8/2005. White Out/Zombie Nation game. Amazing defensive performance by both teams, capped off by Tamba Hali stripping Troy Smith and putting him on his head. Penn State shows the country that they were back among the elite in college football. PSU 17, OSU 10.

2) Penn State vs. Florida State, Orange Bowl, 1/2/2006. This has already been mentioned a couple times, but also an incredible game. Loses points for general shitty play and higher expectations than above (we were supposed to crush FSU), but still was fun traveling down to Miami and outnumbering the FSU fans by a good bit. Game ended at 1 am or something ridiculous like that. PSU 26, FSU 23, 3OT.

3) Houston Astros at Pittsburgh Pirates, 7/12/1997. Francisco Cordova and Ricardo Rincon combine on no hitter. In typical Pirates fashion, we cant put any runs up through 9 innings, but Mark Smith hits 3 run HR in bottom of 10th and old Three Rivers goes crazy. This was actually a battle for first place, as the overachieving Buccos finished only 4 games behind Houston that year. Pirates 3, Astros 0, 10 innings.

Mark Esposito said...

Rutgers Vs. Louisville last year, college football.

sanford said...

1957 fourth game world series between the Braves and Yanks. Eddie Matthews hits a walk off homer in the 10th to win the game.

Felix said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Felix said...

2006 World Cup in Germany, Group E, Ghana - USA.

The winner advances to the Round of 16. Ghana's first ever World Cup appearance. Half the stadium are US fans, the other half are Ghanaians and Germans cheering for Ghana. Ghana wins 2-1 and their fans are dancing through the streets of Nuremberg for hours afterwards.

IkeKrizzule said...

The semifinals of the Canadian University football playoffs (I know, we do a playoffs instead of just letting writers and computers pick a couple of teams, its weird but try to wrap your head around it).

Anyways, its a beautiful day in Saskatton, Saskatchewan, and we're playing our rivals from Laval who beat us in the finals last year. A beautiful fall day, a hard fought game, we win when we knock down a pass on 3rd Down (think 4th down in American football) from inside the 10 that would have gave them the win. My good friend has a 4th quarter interception, and a huge tackle on 3rd and goal from the 1.

Commence massive partying across the city.

Sportscaster Mark Nagi said...

1998 World Series Game 1. Yankees rally with 7 runs in 7th, Knoblauch 3 run HR, Tino grandslam. Yankees beat Padres 9-6.

helmethead98 said...

This thread is sweet. Enough to make me get an account so I can post.

1/1a. 1991 Twins World Series. Games 6 and 7. Like 34 posted, Game 6 was unbelievable. I was so nervous the whole game because if the Twins lost, that was it. I also didn't drink that night because the coworker I brought didn't drink. Game 7 was even louder than game 6. I drank alot, so I wasn't as on edge. As soon as Dan Gladden streched a single to a double, we knew that was it. I think I lost some hearing that night, my ears were ringing for 2 days afterward. All of Downtown Minneapolis was in the streets celebrating. My good friend and I went up to the 5th floor of the parking garage and split a bottle of champange while watching the celebration, then drove 6 hours back to college.

2. When I was a teen in the mid 80's, my dad would always get North Stars (screw Norm Green) tickets. 2 Games stand out. 1 was a 2-2 tie with the Oilers at the height of their domination. The other was a playoff game 7 that went to overtime with the Blues, mid-80's era. Stars scored and the place just went crazy. I miss North Stars hockey, and I don't live close enough to go see the Wild.

3. Even though I'm not a huge Bucky Badger fan, the Lambeau Field hockey game was fun. As a Viking fan, thats about the only chance I'll have to see it. It is an amazing place.

This thread rocks.

Zach Landres-Schnur said...

1. 49ers beat Green Bay 30-27 in an NFC Wild Card game on a 25-yard dart from Young to TO as time expired.

2. 2004 the Washington Huskies basketball team -- on the bubble at the time -- hosted a top-ranked undefeated Stanford team in the last game of the regular season. The Huskies won, the floor mobbed with fans, and the face of Husky hoops changed forever.

3. Great thread! Great idea!

BroadStParade said...

They ended badly, as all Philly sports experiences do, but here goes:

January 2003, NFC Championship Game - Section 701, Veterans Stadium. Last game at the Vet. It's 20 degrees. Tampa is like 1-25 in games below 40. Mitchell returns the opening kick 75 yards. Two snaps later, Duce takes a hand-off to the house and we're going to the Super Bowl. Wait...

Runner-Up
2004 Preakness. Top of the stretch, Smarty Jones drops the hammer and leaves the field in his wake. The Triple Crown is in sight. Wait...

JilleeyD said...

1987 Fiesta Bowl - Penn State vs. Miami. The Greatest College football game EVER.

Dave said...

This one is easy but involves a relatively obscure sport in indoor soccer. Back in the early 1980's, the MISL was flourishing and teams played to great crowds. None was better than the Baltimore fans that supported the Blast. Games were always sold out with people sitting in nosebleed seats with very limited views of the field. In 1983, the Blast were playing the San Diego Sockers in the best of 5 championship series and were down 2 games to 1. Game 4 was in Baltimore and the place was packed to the rafters. The game was back and forth until San Diego took a 1 goal lead late in the 4th quarter. The MISL officials brought out the championship trophy and were ready for the awards presentation to take place shortly after the game. Unfortunately for San Diego, Peter Baralic unleashed a laser shot with about 30 seconds left to tie the game. I've never been in a louder arena. That is until Joey Fink slid a shot past the San Diego goalie just minutes into sudden death overtime. I'm surprised the roof didn't blow off and land in the Inner Harbor. The Blast players stayed on the field an hour after the game celebrating with their fans. Nobody went home. Those were the short glory days of indoor soccer.

Nosk said...

Islanders vs Maple Leafs in the 2002 playoffs. Isles made it for the first time in about 7 years, and the fans were absolutely nuts. Nassau Coliseum is already extremely loud, but when you get fans that enthusiastic in it, you can go deaf.

I attended game 6, it was when the Isles won in the dying minutes on a penalty shot, when Bates scored, i literally thought i went deaf, i could not hear for almost 2 minutes, i got scared. It was the most insane atmosphere and game i have ever been to in any sporting event, and i've been to over a 1,000 different ones.

Here is some vids of that game.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=9EnQ262BIWk

http://youtube.com/watch?v=uRPU7Z9fdDM