2016 was a great year in sports

2016 was a sports year that I'll surely remember for the rest of my life

2016.

Wow, what a great year in sports.

I don’t think I’ve ever witnessed more history in one year of sports as I have this year. While my Arizona teams have consistently disappointed, when you’re attempting to write objectively about a subject as subjective at sports, you have to pick the good out of the bad.

Let’s start with 2016’s NCAA Tournament. In the final game of March Madness, North Carolina ties the game with arguably one of the craziest, most clutch shots I have ever seen in a basketball game. Turns out it didn’t matter, as Villanova scored once more at the buzzer, securing the title and ending one of the craziest games I’ve ever seen.

Fast forward now to the NBA Finals. Usually, I’d transition to baseball, but I’ll have to wait since the Arizona Diamondbacks apparently decided to sit the season out.

Anyway, this year’s NBA Finals was the culmination of a once-in-a-lifetime season for the Golden State Warriors. After winning an unprecedented 73 games during the regular season, the Warriors found themselves facing the Cleveland Cavaliers in the Finals. After four games, the Warriors were one game away from the championship, sitting at 3-1.

Then the Cavaliers won. Then, they won again. 3-3.

In the final game, after 20 lead changes, the Cavaliers brought a title home to Cleveland, the city’s first in over 50 years.

Over the summer, we had the Olympics. While not without its controversy (no Olympic Games ever are), as always we were still provided with great competition and memorable moments. This year, we had a team just for refugees.

By the time the baseball postseason started, we had already been treated to a wonderful year in sports. How many times can we make history in one year?

Baseball, however, had not yet had its say and stepped up to the plate with the best World Series I’ll ever see in my life.

The Cleveland Indians, from the same Cleveland that’s home to the team that won the city’s first championship in decades a few months earlier, were playing in the World Series.

If that wasn’t enough, they were facing the Chicago Cubs, whose historic championship drought had outlasted empires, world wars and entire lifetimes over its 108-year span.

I had already written off the Diamondbacks way back in May, so I just wanted a decent World Series. I was not disappointed.

Over eight days, I watched the World Series at home and work, in two different states, wondering which of these two teams was going to beat the other one. Coincidentally, I was traveling with my friend Matt and his older brother, both from Ohio.

As the Indians started to win, they began talking about what it would mean to have the World Series go to Cleveland. The Cubs had other plans.

I watched Game Seven while working at the bar. It was packed with Cubs fans, and occasionally I’d steal a few seconds and glance at the game. I saw bits of the back-and-forth battle that led to extra innings, I saw the rain start to fall

Watching Kris Bryant throw to first for the last out, seeing the wave of pure euphoria erupt over the bar crowd, and knowing I witnessed history was a wonderful cap to a wonderful year of sports.

It was easy to forget about the Diamondbacks bombing, and my terrible fantasy teams, the Cardinals underperforming, the Sun Devils peaking six games into the season and my other personal sporting woes.

I still had great games to watch, and I think it will be hard to top the games we saw in 2016.


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