If you ever find yourself at any given restaurant or bar in and around Boston, you are sure to find some sports fans that won’t shut up about Boston’s rich sports history. Here are the 5 greatest Boston sports games of all time.
5. 2013 ALDS, Game 2
Taking the number 5 spot, is game 2 of the 2013 ALDS with the Red Sox vs Tigers. In the bottom of the 8th inning, the game was looking like a one way game leaning towards the Tigers, as they were holding a 5-1 lead. The bottom of the 8th was one to remember, though.
The first man to get on base was Will Middlebrooks off of a double. The next man to get on base was stud outfielder, Jacoby Ellsbury, from a walk. Finally, the last man to get on base was now retired and my second favorite baseball player of all time, Dustin Pedroia. He got on from a base hit. It was 2 outs and next up was David “Big Papi” Ortiz, the most clutch player and my favorite baseball player of all time.
It was 2 outs, bases loaded, one of those situations you would create in your imagination. Off the first pitch, David Ortiz goes yard, sending Torii Hunter flying over the bullpen wall. The game was tied 5-5. The Red Sox would go on to win that game 6-5 and defeat the Cardinals in the World Series. Although the series was not on the line in this game, this was an amazing comeback and shows how clutch David Ortiz is.
4. 1970 Stanley Cup Finals, Game 4
Next at number 4 is one of the most under appreciated sports games of all time. It was game 4 of the 1970 Stanley Cup. The Bruins were playing the Blues. It was 3-3 in the game and the Bruins were looking for a clean sweep. They were up 3-0 in the series. The game was in overtime and the Bruins knew they could count on Bobby Orr to do something. Derek Sanderson had the puck in his hands, he ended up behind the goal and made an AMAZING pass to Orr. Orr would take the pass and deliver an amazing shot to the goal. He then leapt into the air, thus creating one of the most iconic sports photos of all time. There is a statue of Orr making the play outside of TD Garden today, as this play his turned into one of the greatest freeze frames ever.
3. Super Bowl XLIX
At number 3, I have Super Bowl XLIX. This was heavily anticipated as a young star in Russell Wilson, coming off of a demanding Super Bowl victory against the great Peyton Manning, would face off against veteran Tom Brady. This game was back and forth early on without many notable highlights, though. The highlights would come later in the last drive of the 4th quarter.
It was looking like the Lombardi Trophy would be headed to Seattle for the second year in a row, even though the Patriots were up 28-24 in the last drive. After an incredible catch by Seattle’s Jermaine Kearse on that final drive, New England fans were losing all hope. The Seahawks would find themselves in an ideal situation with the ball placed on the 1 yard line. Then, to all of the football world’s shock, Pete Carroll called a pass.
Keep in mind, the Seahawks had one of the top running backs in the league in Marshawn Lynch. After everyone sees a pass, the next thing we know is some no-name Patriots defensive back came up with the ball. That player was Malcolm Butler, an undrafted cornerback out of West Alabama. This sealed the deal for the Patriots, as there were 24 seconds left on the clock. The Patriots won their 4th Super Bowl, which was Tom Brady’s 4th as well.
2. 1987 ECF, Game 5
Taking silver at number 2 is Larry Bird’s game winning steal against the Pistons in 1987 in game 5. The Celtics were on the brink to be down 3-2, down 5 points late in the fourth quarter. Boston would find themselves down by one eventually, with 17 seconds left. All eyes were on Larry Bird. Bird would get the ball on an out of bounds play but find himself getting his layup blocked. The ball was given to the Pistons. Isiah Thomas would take out the ball, but the ball was stolen by Bird in dramatic fashion. Bird then delivered an amazing assist to Dennis Johnson to take the cake and win the game.
1. Super Bowl LI
With the best game in Boston sports history, (it really should not even be close to an argument), we have Super Bowl LI. This game will forever and always live rent free in Atlanta Falcons fans’ heads. With 8 minutes left in the 3rd quarter, the Patriots would find themselves down 28-3. This is when a light switched for the Patriots.
The Patriots scored 25 unanswered points with the help of Tom Brady and the Super Bowl MVP Julian Edelman. This was the first Super Bowl to head into overtime. Tom Brady led the Patriots down the field. The ball was handed off to James White. He just barely made it into the end zone, thus sealing one of the greatest comebacks, if not the greatest, in sports history.
At that moment, I knew Tom Brady was the greatest of all time. It was the most surreal moment I’d ever witnessed.
The city of Boston has a rich history and many games and championships to show for that. Hopefully there are more to come soon after these recent struggles.