What a year in sports. Drew Brees, Armando Galarraga, Rafael Nadal, Andres Inesta and Edgar Renteria are just a few of the names dotting the sports headlines in 2010. Here is one writer’s perspective on the best storylines and a remembrance to those we lost to death. I hope you enjoy the trip down Memory Lane.
Top Sports Stories
1. New Orleans Saints rule the NFL by winning Super Bowl XLIV, 31-17, over the Indianapolis Colts. Drew Brees is named MVP and the Hurricane Katrina-ravaged city goes bonkers.
2. Tiger Woods addresses his martial infidelity and returns to pro golf but posts his worst year as a professional.
3. San Francisco Giants are surprise World Series winners over Texas, 4-1, making Edgar Renteria, Cody Ross and Aubrey Huff champions. It’s the first Giants title since 1954 when they played in New York.
5. Andres Iniesta scored the game’s long goal in extra time as Spain defeats the Netherlands for the World Cup. USA upsets Algeria on a Landon Donovan goal in an earlier match.
6. Alabama and Coach Nick Saban take the NCAA’s Bowl Championship Series football crown, 37-21 over Texas. In 2010’s regular season, it’s Auburn and Oregon finishing 1-2 in the BCS standings.
7. LeBron James makes his big move – leaving the Cleveland Cavaliers for the Miami Heat and a $110 million contract.
8. USA wins a record 37 medals at the Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver yet loses the big one as Team Canada and Coach Mike Babcock of the Red Wings earn the gold in men’s ice hockey on Sidney Crosby’s overtime goal.
9. Duke wins its fourth NCAA National Championship in men’s basketball, defeating Butler.
10. (tie) Los Angeles Lakers do it again – winning the NBA World Championship, in seven games over Boston. Chicago Blackhawks win their first Stanley Cup since 1961, defeating the Philadelphia Flyers, 4-2.
Other top national stories: Roy Halladay of Phillies tosses second no-hitter in playoff history; Armando Galarraga of the Tigers is denied a perfect game by ump Jim Joyce’s blown safe call at first base on Indians’ 27th batter; U-Conn women’s basketball sets record for most consecutive victories in NCAA history, with 90 wins; jockey Calvin Borel wins his third Kentucky Derby in four years, this time aboard Super Saver; Jimmie Johnson wins his fifth consecutive NASCAR Spring Cup Series title with six victories and over $7 million in winnings; Dario Franchitti wins the 99th Indianapolis 500, his second victory in Gasoline Alley. A record four women start the race; It takes a record 980 points, 11 hours and three days at Wimbledon in a men’s first-round match between John Isner and Nicolas Mahut; Nebraska joins the Big Ten while Utah and Colorado join the Pac-10; Phil Mickelson wins his third green jacket at the Masters; Rafael Nadal wins French, Wimbledon and U.S. Open titles to complete his personal Grand Slam; Serena Williams takes the Australian Open and Wimbledon.
Deaths with national/world ties: Sparky Anderson, George Blanda, Erica Blasberg, Manute Bol, Tom Brookshier, Pat Burns, Fran Crippen, Don Coryell, Mike Cuellar, Satch Davidson, Willie Davis, Bob Feller, Bud Greenspan, Ernie Harwell, Ralph Houk, Andy Irons, Harry Kalas, John Kibler, Ron Kramer, Olympian Nodar Kumaritashvili, Bill Lajoie, Kenny McKinley, Yeardly Love, Maurice Lucas, Don Meredith, Arthur Mercante, Dave Niehaus, Bob Probert, Juan Antonio Samaranch, Merlin Olsen, Ron Santo, Bob Sheppard, Roy Skinner, George Steinbrenner, Jack Tatum, Bobby Thomson and John Wooden.