National Top Ten 2014 Stories:
- LA Clippers owner Donald Sterling is banned for life from the National Basketball Association by commissioner Adam Silver following the public release of racially-charged audio recordings between Sterling and his girlfriend.
- National Football League commissioner Roger Goodell receives criticism following domestic violence/off-field behavior of many of the NFL players including Ray Rice of the Baltimore Ravens who knocked his then-fiancee unconscious.
- Super Bowl 49 is won by the Seattle Seahawks 43-8 over the Denver Broncos. It’s one of the game’s most lopsided margins.
- San Francisco Giants cement their dynasty with third World Series championship in five seasons, ousting the AL Champion Kansas City Royals in exciting fashion, 4 games to 3.
- U-Conn wins the NCAA Big Dance by defeating Florida in the title game; it’s U-Conn’s second title in four seasons. They defeated St. Joe’s, Villanova, Iowa State and Michigan State before downing Florida.
- San Antonio Spurs take down the mighty Miami Heat and LeBron James, winning Games 3, 4 and 5 to win their fifth NBA World Championship in 16 years yet their first since 2007.
- LeBron James leaves the Miami Heat to return to Cleveland, signing a multi-year contract with Dan Gilbert’s Cavaliers. The move does not pay dividends at least through the 2014 portion of the Cavs’ season.
- Russia hosts the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games and tops the medal count with 33 total medals, including 13 golds. USA finished second with 28 medals yet disappointed in men’s ice hockey and speed skating.
- Florida State, under coach Jimbo Fisher, win their third NCAA national football championship, defeating Auburn 34031, at the Rose Bowl stadium in Pasadena. Down 18 points, FSU mounts the largest comeback in BCS history.
- (tie) Los Angeles Kings win their second Stanley Cup in three seasons by ousting the New York Rangers, 4 games to 1. Justin Williams wins the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP.
U-Conn women’s basketball squad complete an historic 40-0 season by defeating Notre Dame 79-58 for their ninth title.
Other National Top Stories: California Chrome wins Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes; Tiger Woods continues to struggle at golf’s four Majors; Alex Rodriguez’s suspension from MLB reduced from 211 games to 162 games but he’s still out the entire 2014 season; Phil Jackson takes control of the struggling New York Knicks; Dale Earnhardt Jr. takes the Daytona 500 while Kevin Harvick wins NASCAR Sprint Cup Series championship; Ryan Hunter-Reay wins the Indianapolis 500; Rafael Nadal wins ninth men’s singles French Open title; NBA veteran Jason Collins makes history by becoming the first openly gay athlete in North American major pro sports; Group of Northwestern University football players won landmark case and ruled to be employees and allowed to form a union.
National Deaths: Elena Baltacha, Marvin (Bad News) Barnes, Raymond Beadle, Jean Beliveau, Gary Bettenhausen, Rob Bironas, Jason Bitsko, Sir Jack Brabham, Frank Budd, Rubin “Hurricane” Carter, Alice Coachman, Jerry Coleman, Bill Conlin, Peter Daland, Alvin Dark, Danielle Downey, Jimmy Ellis, Eusebio Da Silva Ferreira, William Clay Ford Sr., Jack Fleck, Jim Fregosi, Malcom Glazer, Tom Gola, Sandy Grossman, Tony Gwynn, Robert (Showboat) Hall, James (The Ultimate Warrior) Hellwig, Lou Hudson, Chet Jastremski, Dr. Frank Jobe, Caldwell Jones, Lewis Katz, Ed Kiely, Ralph Kiner, Red Klotz, Jack Kraft, Sam Lacey, Philliup Lutzenkirchan, Ross Lonsberry, Will McKamey, Don Meyer, Earl Morrall, Chuck Noll, Markel Owens, Mel Patton, Pat Quinn, Dr. Jack Ramsay, Rae Ripppetoe-Blair, Jenny Romatowski, Ray Sadecki, George Shuba, Gene Stus, Jose Suliman, Oscar Tavares, Orlando Thomas, Rodney Thomas, Viktor Tikhonov, Frank Torre, Gilles Tremblay, Kevin Ward Jr., Bob Welch, Pete Van Wieren, Walter Walsh, Ralph Wilson & Don Zimmer.