When it comes to champions, there are plenty of inspiring stories in sports. Then, there are the chokes. To be truthful, it’s hard to tell which story is more compelling. Just kidding. Choking sucks…
In the 1986 NHL playoffs, with the score tied in Game 7 of the Conference semifinals, the Oilers’ rookie defenseman tipped the puck into his own goal and Calgary won 3-2. The blunder cost the Oilers a chance at 5 straight Stanley Cup wins…
In the 2006 Winter Olympics Snowboarding Finals, Jacobellis had a 50 yard lead for the Gold when she showboated right before the finish line. Her fall cost her the medal – and her reputation. And, oh yeah. Millions in endorsements…
In the 1995 NBA Finals, Anderson missed 4 free throws in the closing minutes of Game 1, blowing the game for The Magic. That year, Anderson had a 75% free throw success rate. The next year? A measly 40…
Known as “The Great White Shark” in the mid-1990s, Greg Norman was the Tiger Woods of his time. Except in the clutch. His most famous meltdown was in the 1996 Masters, when Norman entered the final day with a six-stroke lead over Nick Faldo. He shot a 78, missing the Green Jacket by 5 strokes.
In the 16th round against the USA in the 2010 World Cup Finals, Green missed a “howler” in the goal that knocked England out of the run. He never recovered from the miscue and barely stood in at the line the rest of his career.
In the 1993 Wimbledon Finals, Novotná imploded and lost 5 straight games to lose the match after being within 5 points of the win. To be fair, it was against Steffi Graf, so…
In the 2006 NFC Wild Card decider against the Seahawks, Dallas’ QB Romo botched the hold on a 19-yard field goal attempt with the Cowboys trailing 21-20 and 1:19 remaining. The success rate that year, league-wide, for FGs inside the 20? 99.1%…
1951 Brooklyn Dodgers
Despite a 13 game lead over their rival NY NL team by the end of August, the Brooklyn Dodgers squandered that gap over the crosstown Giants. Coming down to a one game playoff, Bobby Thompson hit “the shot heard around the world” and stole the National League pennant.
What else can we say? The 1986 “behind the bag” miscue by Bill Buckner of the Red Sox against the NY Mets in the World Series is possibly the greatest sports choke in history. So much so, that “pulling a Buckner” is a phrase that means just that. Too bad. He was actually a great player…