Happy New Year Everyone! I hope 2011 will be a memorable year. But before we officially begin 2011, lets take a look back at the wild, freaky, bizarre and inspiring stories of 2010 -- in this month-by-month account. So grab a Pepsi and brace yourself...
In his final game as a Florida Gator, Tim Tebow completes in his first twelve passes, destroys the Cincinnati Bearcats and finishes the Sugar Bowl with 533 total yards (most in Bowl Championship history) and three touchdowns in a 51-24 blowout victory. Tebow follows the game with the singing the school’s fight song and a lap around the Superdome.
Phil Taylor of England defeats Simon Whitlock of Australia in the PDC World Darts championship in London. It’s the 13th title for Taylor.
Chris Johnson makes most of his fantasy owners rich in the final week (17) of the NFL schedule by breaking Marshall Faulk’s record for total yards and becomes the sixth player in history to rush for 2,000+ yards in a season.
The Washington Redskins fire head coach extraordinaire Jim Zorn … and his entire staff! ‘Skins owner Daniel Snyder, who one time elected to go to TomKat’s wedding than travel with his own team for a big game that weekend, wished Zorn the best in his future endeavors and said the search for a new coach will be a process.
Outfielder Andre Dawson is elected into the baseball hall of fame after a 20-year career with the Expos, Cubs, Red Sox and Marlins. Dawson finished his career nearly 250 hits of the 3000 club and a career .279 batting average. In the same election ballot into the HOF, underrated Bert Blyleven falls five votes short.
Two days after firing Jim Zorn, the Washington Redskins name ‘Mr. Personality’ Mike Shanahan, former 2-time Superbowl winning coach of the Denver Broncos, as their new head coach. Shanahan signs a 5-year deal. (to be continued…)
NBA commissioner David Stern suspends Wizards’ Gilbert Arenas indefinitely, without pay, for carrying a gun in the locker room and allegedly pulling it out on teammate Javaris Crittenton, two weeks earlier. The two players had been arguing during a card game on the Wizards' flight back from Phoenix and the dispute continued on into the team’s locker room at Verizon Center before practice two days later. Arenas has acknowledged bringing his handguns to the arena and displaying them in the locker room that morning in what he maintained was a playful gesture aimed at his teammate.
A bus transporting the Togo national soccer team to a tournament in Angola was attacked by the Front for the Liberation of the Enclave of Cabinda (FLEC)—who claimed responsibility for the murder of the bus driver and nine wounded people. Three days later, Togo withdraws from the Africa Cup of Nations.
The Dallas Cowboys finally win a playoff game in thirteen years, defeating the Philadelphia Eagles 34-14 in the NFC wild card round. Jerry Jones has kittens and Dallas fans everywhere proclaim to now win three straight Super Bowls because 2010, 2011 and 2012 because this is their year!
After the Green Bay Packers rally from 21-point deficit to tie the game in regulation, they ‘pack it in’ in sudden death when Cards’ Karlos Dansby scores a touchdown on a fumble return. The Arizona/Green Bay videogame set playoff records for total points (96) and touchdowns (13). On the bright side for cheese heads everywhere, Aaron Rodgers gets itched in the records books by passing 400 yards in a playoff game.
Ray Rice begins a Ravens/Patriots playoff game with a 90-yard touchdown run -- helping Baltimore score 24 points… in the first quarter! The Ravens went on to win 33-14.
After years of pleading the fifth to Congress and refusing to talk about the past, Mark McGwire admits to having used steroids for a decade. To the shock of fans everywhere, McGwire admits he also used steroids in 1998 when he and fellow juice head Sammy Sosa traded home runs like road groupies. McGwire is punished by the St. Louis Cardinals organization with a hitting coach position.
The Arizona Cardinals magic runs out as Reggie Bush scores two touchdowns (including an 80-yard punt return) helping the Saints to go marching into the NFC championship game. Meanwhile that afternoon, the Indianapolis Colts beat the Ravens 20-3 (Baltimore Ravens – SIX Turnovers… Ouch!) to advance to the AFC title game.
America’s team, The Dallas Cowboys gets a royal welcome in Minnesota, as the Vikings blowout the Cowboys 34-3. Jerry Jones has kittens and Dallas fans everywhere predict to win Super Bowls 2011, because ironically it will be played Cowboys stadium and its destiny. 2010-2011 is their year!
The Jets, on the road, upset the San Diego Chargers 17-14 to advance to the AFC championship vs much bigger Goliath, Peyton Manning’s Colts the following week.
The Saints went marching into the Superdome in front of a crowd of 72,000 and come back from behind to win the NFC championship on Brett Favre interception’s deep in New Orleans territory in the closing seconds of regulation. The Saints won the coin toss and Brett Favre went marching onto the sidelines and watched helplessly as Saints’ kicker Garrett Hartley's nailed the clinching FG nearly five minutes into OT. Favre never had the opportunity to redeem himself in overtime and have a possession for Minnesota. Something has to be done about this, right?... Read on…
Egypt wins a record seventh Africa Cup of Nations title, following a 1-0 win against Ghana in the finals in Angola.Mo Gedo scored the only goal of the game curling a great shot past Richard Kingson in the 85th minute.
Years after Katrina, the feel-good story of the New Orleans Saints is complete with a 31-17 Superbowl victory in Miami over the Indianapolis Colts.Drew Brees threw three touchdowns and 288 yards.
NASCAR announces a rule change to the green-white-checker rule for all of its national series. Up to three attempts at a green-flag finish can now be made, up one from the previous season.
Luge athlete Nodar Kumaritashvili has a fatal crash by the end of a 4,500-foot-long course and was propelled off the track before the Vancouver Olympics officially begun. Video of the crash shows Kumaritashvili lying motionless after being thrown from his sled and striking a steel pole, coming out of the course's last turn. He was given CPR and transported to a hospital where doctors were unable to revive him. He was 21 years old.
In front of the largest crowd ever to attend a basketball game, Dwyane Wade is named MVP of the All Star game from Cowboys Stadium, leading the East to beat the West 141-139. Wade finishes with 28 points and 11 rebounds.
For the first time since his November 2009 car accident into a fire hydrant and tree near his home in Florida, and in the process getting his hand caught in the cookie jar for being a bad boy, Tiger Woods issues a public apology for cheating on his wife. Speaking for nearly fifteen minutes, he addresses about 40 people in the room, including his mother, friends, colleagues and close associates. His wife, Elin, was not present. Woods claimed therapy had helped him start to deal with his problems and vowed there would be no repeat of his infidelities. Woods gets a hug from his mom at the end of press conference to setup the next Lifetime movie installment of the Tiger Woods saga.
With a near 18,000 plus capacity crowd at the Canada Hockey Place, Sidney Crosby leads Team Canada with a very dramatic 3-2 win over the United States to capture the final gold medal of the Winter Olympics. Crosby: “It doesn't feel real… it feels like a dream, it just feels like dream.”
March Madness begins to shape up as Cornell defeats Brown 95–76 to clinch the Men’s Ivy League title, becoming the first team to secure its bid to the NCAA tournament. Everyone outside of the Ivy League could give a rat’s ass.
In Women's NCAA Basketball, #1 seeded UConn beats Syracuse into a submission with a 77–41 stomping in the quarterfinals of the Big East tournament… and tying their own NCAA record or consecutive wins at 70.
Tiger Woods announces that he will end his self-imposed absence from golf with a triumphed return at the Masters next April. Woods, promising to be a good boy, says he will play to his potential. Keep reading…
The NBA Board of Governors approve Michael Jordan’s bid to buy a majority interest in the Charlotte Bobcats from founding owner Bob Johnson. Jordan, a proven success in the front office with the Washington Wizards, by evident of his decision to draft Kwame Brown over Pau Gasol, Tyson Chandler, Jason Richardson, Joe Johnson, Shane Battier, Tony Parker, Samuel Dalembert, Z-Bo, and Gerald Wallace—becomes the first former NBA player ever to own a majority interest in a league franchise. There’s light at the end of the Charlotte tunnel for Jordan and Coach Larry Brown!
The WWE’s annual blockbuster WrestleMania (XXVI) pay-per-view from Phoenix, AZ is capped off with The Undertaker defending his undefeated win streak at WrestleMania against Shawn Michaels, who decided to put his career on the line if he lost again to the ‘dead man’ a second straight year at Wrestlemania. Michaels lost after Undertaker applied his finishing tombstone pile driver not once... not twice… but three times to end the career of the Heartbreak Kid. Undertaker continues his undefeated winning streak to 18-0 at the granddaddy of wrestling events.
Its opening day of the MLB baseball season, with the rivals Boston Red Sox and NY Yankees going at it in a heavyweight AL East battle—capped off with a Sox win over the Yanks, 9-7.
The Philadelphia Eagles trade their franchise quarterback Donovan McNabb to the Washington Redskins for a second-round 2010 draft pick and a bag of Doritos to be named later.
The most memorable NCAA championship game in the last decade, Duke survives against Butler with a 61-59 win. It’s Duke’s fourth NCAA title. The game is the closest margin of victory since Michigan defeated Seton Hall 80-79 in 1989. The ends on a dramatic free throw miss by Duke center Brian Zoubek win three seconds left and rebound by Butler’s Gordon Hayward to run up after halfcourt to a buzzer-beating three point miss off the back iron. Most of the 70,000 fans on Butler's side let out an "Ohhhhhh," and the Duke players piled onto forward Kyle Singler who finished the game with nineteen points, nine rebounds, two assists, a steal, and two blocks.
In the NCAA women’s championship game, Connecticut completes a second straight undefeated championship season by knocking over Stanford, 53-47. Stanford contemplates revenge. (To be continued…)
In their last regular-season game at Mellon Arena, the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the New York Islanders 7-3. NHL savior Sidney Crosby becomes the third-youngest player in NHL history to collect 500 career points.
Phil Mickelson wins his third Masters and fourth major title at Augusta. And, in his first tournament since his tabloid galore of infidelity, therapy, Florida MILFs, divorce, Tiger Woods finishes tied for fourth with K.J. Choi.
The Minnesota Twins play their first game at Target Field, defeating the Red Sox 5-2. Before the game, the Twins unveil a new statue honoring their Hall of Fame franchise player, the late Kirby Puckett outside the stadium.
The New York Yankees receive their 2009 World Series rings prior to a home game against the LA Angels. Hideki Matsui returns to Yankees Stadium as an Angel and goes 0-for-5. Yanks win 7-5, although Angels rally in the top of the ninth with four runs.
For the first time in franchise history, the Charlotte Bobcats are in the NBA playoffs as the seventh seed. Bobcats will play the Orlando Magic. Things are looking up!
Ubaldo Jimenez of the Colorado Rockies throws the first no-hitter of the season (also first in Rockies’ history) in a 4-0 win over the Atlanta Braves… in Turner Field.
At the PGA Tour in South Carolina, Jim Furyk (USA) wins his second PGA Tour title of the season and 15th of his career after a very bizarre ending to his sudden-death playoff with Brian Davis (England), who calls a two-shot penalty on himself on the first playoff hole.
Oakland pitcher Dallas Braden screams at Yankees strikeout king, Alex Rodriguez after accusing him of breaching one of baseball's unwritten rules by running across the pitcher’s mound. The A’s would win the game over Yankees by a 4-2 score.
Alex Rodriguez asks, in a nutshell, who the hell is Dallas Braden? Hmmm.. stay tuned!
The Orlando Magic sweeps the Charlotte Bobcats, 4-0.
The Cleveland Cavs defeat the Chicago Bulls 4-1 in the first round, in a closely contested 96-94 victory that knocks the Bulls out of the playoffs. Cleveland fans say to bring on Boston and Orlando. Things are looking up, Cavs fans!
8th seeded Montreal Canadiens upset No. 1 seed Washington Capitals in a thrilling game 7 victory in the first round of the NHL playoffs, by the score of 2-1.
MLB commissioner, Mr. Personality himself Bud Selig announces, once again, several idiotic rule changes to the All Star game since his decision to allow a tie to determine the outcome of a game and, then the following year, determining home field advantage in the World Series not by best record, but if your league wins an exhibition game. This time, the most eye-rolling new rule changes: 1. The DH will be used in all games, even in NL ballparks. And, 2. Pitchers who start on the Sunday before the All-Star break will not be allowed to participate in the game and will be replaced on the roster. ………. Yeah, I’m still trying to figure this out, stay with me.
Seventh seeded San Antonio Spurs get their revenge from 2009 by eliminating second seeded, and NBA rival, Dallas Mavericks in six games.
The NCAA votes to expand the Division I Men’s tournament from 65 to 68 games, effective in 2011. Ahh, talk about the ‘Madness!’
Cleveland blows out the Celtics 124-95 to take a 2-1 series led in the second round of the NBA playoffs. LeBron James is presented the MVP award for the second straight season and the city of Cleveland are all ‘witnesses.’
Jamie Moyer, at age 47, becomes the oldest pitcher in MLB history to pitch a complete-game shutout as his Phillies beat… you guessed it… The Atlanta Braves, 7-0.
Kimbo Slice, former YouTube hit wonder, goes into UFC 113 and gets dominated by a former NY Giants defensive end (and in only his second fight) Matt Mitrione.
On a bright Sunday afternoon in Oakland, Dallas Braden throws a perfect game in a 4-0 win over young bucks from Tampa Bay, the Devil Rays… on Mother’s Day! You couldn’t write a script this good.
Dallas Braden’s grandmother, Peggy Lindsey tells Alex Rodiguez to “Stick it!” When asked for a response, Rodriguez cries ‘Uncle’ (literally) and says, “"No more about him, please," before running away.
The Boston Celtics eliminates The Cleveland Cavs like yesterday’s Bobcats, in six games with a 94-85 win. It was the second straight year Cleveland has finished the regular-season with the No. 1 overall seed, and the second in a row that they have failed to get out of the East. LeBron takes his Cleveland jersey off as he exits the tunnel and into the locker rom. In other related news, Cavs head coach Mike Brown books his vacation flight to Hawaii... because right now he’s not ready to discuss the future.
The Philadelphia Flyers become the third team, fourth overall in sports, to come back from a 0-3 series deficit by beating the Boston Bruins by a 4-3 score to win the series 4-3. After improving the Bruins since joining the organization in 2007, head coach Claude Julien looks like he’s going to kill reporters at the post game press conference.
Atlanta Hawks head coach Mike Woodson is relieved of his duties after he and his team was relieved on by Dwight Howard and Orlando in a second round sweep ... and if that wasn’t bad enough… by an average blowout margin of 25.5 per game. Atlanta vows to hit the free agent market hard this summer and to improve the organization.
‘Lookin at Lucky’ pulls off an upset at the U.S. triple-crown’s second race.
After a humiliating season, the New Jersey Nets are favorites to win the rights of the first overall pick of the 2010 NBA Draft.
The ping-pong ball goes the Washington Wizards way, as they will select the first overall pick on June 24’s draft. The Philadelphia 76ers will pick second and the... ah :::cough::: New Jersey Nets will kill themselves and pick third.
The Philadelphia Flyers continue their postseason magic by beating the Montreal Canadiens 4-2 in the Eastern Conference championship, 4-1 in the series. The Flyers advance to the Stanley Cup. Let’s go Flyers!
The NFL announces that Super Bowl XLVIII, in February 2014, will be held… wait for it… at the new, soon to be opened, Meadowlands Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ. This will be the first Super Bowl to be held in an open-air stadium in a cold-weather location.
With the NBA Western conference series tied at 2-2, The Lakers and Suns play to a pivotal, crazy, all-out game 5 at Staples Center that had Lakers’ Ron Artest takes a wide open three that has the crowd in LA ready to kill him. Then, Suns’ Jason Richardson misses a three with five seconds left but Suns’ Channing Frye grabs the offensive rebound and passes it to Richardson who gets a second chance and makes the most of it with a bank-off the backboard tying 3. Lakers call timeout… Kobe Bryant misses a 3…. And Ron Artest makes the biggest rebound of his life outta nowhere and makes a two point shot as time expires. So, in 55 seconds Artest went from being the villain to the hero. Gotta love L.A.!
In the Men's Pan-American Cup in Puerto Rico, the United States win for the third consecutive time and their fourth overall. Jayson Jablonsky, of the U.S., is MVP.
Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga pitches the game of his life against the Cleveland Indians. No walks, hits, errors or runs. In fact, it was… perfect! Perfect that is until in the ninth inning with final out looming, umpire Jim Joyce calls Cleveland Indians' Jason Donald safe on a ground ball… when in fact, Donald was actually out. Joyce reviews the final play that would have given Galarraga the perfect game he rightfully deserved and personally apologized to Galarraga and hugged him after the Tigers' 3-0 win.
In a great sports moment of humility and grace, Jim Joyce, full of tears, takes the field at Comerica Park the following day and shakes Galarraga’s hand and gives him a pat on the back at home plate before the Tigers/Indians game begins.
John Wooden passes away at age 99 of natural causes. Wooden’s most notable accomplishment was coaching UCLA to 620 wins in 27 seasons and 10 NCAA titles during his last 12 seasons, including seven in a row from 1967 to 1973. His UCLA teams also had a record winning streak of 88 games and, in the process, four perfect 30–0 seasons.
Bryce Harper, 17-year-old standout catcher out of College of Southern Nevada, is selected as the first overall pick of the MLB draft by the Washington Nationals.
The Philadelphia Flyers, at home, fight and refuse to go quietly in the Stanley Cup Finals as they tie Game 6 at 3-3. In overtime, the Chicago Blackhawks score on a game winning goal by Patrick Cane to win the series, 4-2, and the Stanley Cup NHL crown.
The NCAA announces violations and issues punishment against the University of Southern California’s football program after finding out current New Orleans Saints star, Reggie Bush took ‘things.’ The Trojans are banned from playoff play for two seasons, they lose thirty total scholarships over the next three years, and must erase fourteen wins from December 2004 through 2005—including (you following this?) their win in the BCS National Championship Game after 2004, as if it never happened. If only they go do that to McGwire, Sosa and Bonds….
At UFC 115 from Vancouver, Rich Franklin knocks out badass Chuck Liddell with a punch. Liddell contemplates retirement.
Dana White says good idea. What a pal!
With a 3-2 series lead in the NBA finals, The Boston Celtics gets comfortable and decide this would be a great time to go out at Staples Center and play it’s the preseason. Meanwhile, the Lakers are fighting for their lives and win 89-67. NBA finals tied, 3-3.
Two days after falling asleep 48 hours ago, the Celtics decide to play ball in Game 7. The Celtics lead by 11… Kobe Bryant goes 6-for-24 (0-for-3 from 3s) and commits 4 turnovers… and the Lakers win?? Yes, by a final score of 83-79 and the Lake show are back-to-back champs. Ron Artest makes the biggest shot of his life, a three pointer with one minute to go in the fourth. It is Artest’s first and only championship ring that we’re sure he’ll cherish forever.
At Wimbledon in Men’s singles, john Isner (U.S.) d. Nicolas Mahut (France) 6-4, 3-6, 6-7(7), 7-6(3), 70-68. After only 11 HOURS and 5 minutes, Isner advances into the second round to play Thiemo de Bakker (Netherlands).
The Washington Wizards select Kentucky’s John Wall, to the shock of everyone, with the first overall pick. Fellow Wildcats’ DeMarcus Cousins (5th, by the Kings), Patrick Patterson (14th, Rockets), Eric Bledsoe (18th, Thunder-to-Clippers) and Daniel Orton (29th, Magic) are all drafted in the first round, making Kentucky the first school to have five players drafted in the first round of any NBA Draft.
In other related draft night news, Blazers billionaire owner Paul Allen fires his general manager Kevin Pritchard -- an hour before the draft. But wait, it gets better. Pritchard, who’s just been fired, is asked to run the draft on behalf of the Portland organization. Hollywood producers have found the script to the sequel, Dumb & Dumber II. Let me ask, what is Pritchard's incentive not to draft Armon Johnson from Nevada with the 22nd pick? Pritchard restrains himself and waits until the second round to pick Armon Johnson.
Edwin Jackson of the Arizona Diamondbacks throws the fourth no-hitter of the MLB season, outlasting the Tampa Bay Rays, 1–0.
Part 2 of the 2010 Year In Review: "The Bizarre, Wild, Freakish, And Inspiring Stories" will be posted soon...
Andrew Khellah, Executive Producer of Pro Wrestling Diary (www.pwdiary.com), is a contributor and writer for the Bleacher Report.