December 30, 2012

2012: Ten games you should've seen

Sports has a banner year. Well, it always does. What does not happen most of the time are athletes falling from grace, and not by failure inside the court: Lance Armstrong, for example. But that's not the point of this post. (That's for later.)

The point of this post is to relive the greatest sporting moments, as they happened. Yes, I am being cheesy. As is customary, let's have two lists: one that did not involve a Filipino, and another that involves at least one of us. This list involves matches that didn't involve a single drop of Filipino blood. At least that's what we can confirm.

10. Kansas 64, Ohio State 62, national semifinals of the NCAA Men's Division I Basketball tournament, at the Mercedes Benz Superdome
One-time Talk 'N Text import JJ Sullinger's little brother stayed in The Ohio State University coz he wants to win at every level there is. Unfortunately, the perky hoopsters from Kansas were in the way. Thomas Robinson had something else in mind.

9. Andy Murray def. Roger Federer 6-2, 6-1, 6-4, gold medal game of the Olympics men's singles tournament, at the All-England Club
8. New York Knicks 89, Miami Heat 87, Game 4 of the Eastern Conference First Round, at the Madison Square Garden
Hey at least the Knicks finally won their first playoff game ever since they dropped "erbocker" from their name. Kidding.

7. Mexico 2, Brazil 1, gold medal game of the Olympics men's football tournament
The Olympic gold is the only piece of championship that the Brazilians still have to win that is available for them. Even the likes of Ronaldinho failed to power them to a gold medal game in 2008. This time, Brazil sent in their best Olympic team... only to be thwarted by Oribe Peralta's first minute goal. And that was Mexico's only gold medal.

6. Floyd Mayweather def. Miguel Cotto via unanimous decision for the WBA Super and WBC Diamond light middleweight championships at the MGM Grand Garden Arena
Everyone was hoping against hope that either Cotto will find within himself a nasty punch that'll put Mayweather to sleep, or that the judges are too stoned to judge correctly.... the thing is they were stoned a month later.

5. United States 4, Canada 3, via extra time, semifinals of the Olympics women's football tournament
Seriously, watching this is like watching dudes play. Alex Morgan's last gasp winner at the final minute of stoppage time of the extra time, plus the dubious foul that led to the Abby Wambach's penalty is the stuff that lore is made.

4. United States 107, Spain 100, gold medal game of the Olympics men's basketball tournament, at the O2.
Let's face it. Serge Ibaka should've logged more minutes, and the Spaniards were within screaming distance (worse than shouting distance, but better than yelling distance) when the both Gasols were on the court. When both were benched at the start of the second half, that's when the Americans pulled away, and the Spaniards can't catch up.

3. Chelsea 1, Bayern Munich 1 (Chelsea 4-3 in penalties), UEFA Champions League final, at the Allianz Arena

Chelsea had one corner. Bayern Munich had 20. Chelsea scored on that lone corner to tie the game, and win the game via penalties, thanks to Didier Drogba's kicker. The commentators were saying that Chelsea were playing a shitty game but it seemed that they were destined to win.

2. Denver Broncos 29, Pittsburge Steelers 23 via overtime, NFL Divisional Playoffs, at the Mile High Stadium

1. Manchester City 2, Queens Park Rangers 1, final matchday of the Premier League, at Etihad Stadium

For Manchester City, a win would give them their first title ever since God knows when. Anything else and the hated red team from the other side (actually, outside) of town will win. For Queens Park Rangers, a loss might relegate them to the lower division. Man City looked like on their way for their title, until QPR scored two successive goals, and now, Man City have to score twice to win the title.

All was lost as QPR looked set to win (no matter the result by now, they're safe) as stoppage time kicked in. All this time, Man City had the monopoly of possession and corners. At the first minute of stoppage time, Mario Balotelli almost scored one. Then a minute later, Edin Dzeko leveled the score at 2-2. The Etihad was brimming with tension.

Sergio Aguero didn't need the help of a corner as he dribbled the ball all the way to the box, and scored what could be the title winner. It's the stuff dreams are made of, aside from Butters' creamy goo. Only that the referee had to build up the tension so bad he ended the match after seven long minutes of stoppage time. That's the way to win a championship.

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