OT: The best _________ you ever saw live

Submitted by JeepinBen on June 8th, 2017 at 3:13 PM

I figured I'd ask the board for their bragging/lucky break/amazing viewing experiences. Who was the best ______ you've ever seen live? Many with lucky timing can say they saw Tom Brady when he was in college, the best NFL QB. Who was the best pitcher you ever saw at an MLB game? Who saw Desmond return a punt? What about the best basketball player you've seen? In obvious answers, the best 5'7" goalie we've ever seen was tiny Jesus. Any other GOATs you've been lucky enough to have tickets to? Tales you'll tell the grandkids?



June 8th, 2017 at 3:19 PM ^

Had great seats to see American Pharoah win the Belmont in 2015. Certainly the best horse race I've ever seen live and I go to quite a few. Truly unbelievable atmosphere that day with the whole grandstand filling up early and pulling hard for him.


June 8th, 2017 at 3:19 PM ^

Taking my dad to Wrigley tonight and I think the best pitcher I ever saw live was Greg Maddux. It was at the tail end of his career in San Diego, and he got outpitched at Wrigley. Lost 3-1 if memory serves, Ryan Dempster outdueled him. But it was still awesome that we got to see him.

Watching From Afar

June 8th, 2017 at 3:24 PM ^

I live in Boston so I've been fourtunate enough to see Brady in action a few times. Will get another game or two in this fall hopefully, one with my dad almost 20 years after he took me to my first Michigan game... when Brady was the QB. Seems fitting!


June 8th, 2017 at 3:24 PM ^

Shut out the Blue Jays to end the 1987 season and send Detroit to the playoffs


best baseball game atmosphere I have been a part of

Blue in Paradise

June 8th, 2017 at 3:35 PM ^

Nolan Ryan has like 17 KOs against the Tigers and I saw Charles Woodson catch live in EL.

For the Woodson catch, I was sitting in the State student section with my cousin who went to State.  Great memories...

Marcus Ray had the second interception of the game and I yelled "That's 2 picks!"  Some idiotic State fan then yelled "Did you say he has 2 dicks?"  And all State morans were laughing and taunting me.  After the 3rd and 4th pick, the guy kept going with the whole multi-dick theme to less and less laughing as MSU was now getting their asses kicked.

After the 5th UM pick (I think it was also Marcus Ray) - the guy gets up and yells, "he has 5 dicks?" and some other State fan yells out, "Shut the Fuck Up" to the guy.  All of the Michigan fans in the section just busted out laughing - it was simultaneously one of the dumbest and funniest moments I have had at a sporting event.


June 9th, 2017 at 12:14 AM ^

with a table leg instead of the bat his last time up facing Nolan Ryan. My dad was a saint and took a carload of screaming boys for my birthday to see this game. He was happy it ended so quickly. I can still smell the hotdogs and fresh cut grass from that day and watching Ernie and Paul call the game from the crows nests behind home plate.

Boner Stabone

June 8th, 2017 at 3:28 PM ^

I was at the Verlander No-Hitter against the Brewers in 2007.  I was also at the Tim Biakabutuka game in 1995 when he ran for 313 yards against Ohio St.


June 8th, 2017 at 3:28 PM ^

The "Braylon Game" vs. Michigan State, it was my sophomore year, I was in the stands with a couple of good friends from Staeeee. Man, did that game escalate quickly.

Henne to Manningham for the win vs. Ped State, junior year, and somehow we were surrounded by several Nittany Lions. Amazing play and amazing game.


June 8th, 2017 at 3:53 PM ^

I've been to alot of memorable events being 57 and a sports fan who likes to attend games but THAT game, more than about any other I can remember, was increadible for a ton of reasons

1. Started late.  Had a wierd 4:00pm or was it 5:00pm start.  Was very warm at kickoff-cold by end of 3rd OT.

2. We were fucking dead in the water.  When MSU scored on what seemed like their 14ths sprint draw to go up 27-10 about 20% of the place cleared out and the State fans were loud and proud.  My then 17 year old son wanted to leave (we had to drive back to Cleveland) but I said let's give it one more possession first.

3. The noise level was unlike anything I've ever experienced anywhere.  And that was before the place got closed in.  I cant even imagine what it would sound like now.  We were screaming, hitting the metal bleachers with anything that would make noise and generally losing our mind.

4. The place was shaking by 3OT.  Literally shaking.  Next time it's on TV watch how the cameras are shaking and they cant keep them still.  I've never seen (or felt) that before.

From a purely historical signficance I've been to a TON more important games but I've never been to one more fun.  What a night.


June 8th, 2017 at 4:01 PM ^

Braylonfest is definitely a Top Five for me for that very reason - by 3OT, you could hear nothing but crowd but man, every second of that was exciting and kept you distracted from the fact that, as you mentioned, it was bitterly cold by then (it was near 60 at the start of the game, as I recall). 

The 1997 game against OSU is another one for me - the Woodson return was art in motion. 


June 8th, 2017 at 4:10 PM ^

My wife asked the same thing. I said, "let's see what happens on the next possession.."

Scarcely 100 minutes later we left. An amazing experience.

Next possession was a field goal, btw, which didn't really tell us anything. But the onside kick followed after, and the place turned into a madhouse.


June 8th, 2017 at 3:30 PM ^

Michigan guys are obvious--Brady of course, and Woodson and Desmond. I was at the '02 hockey regionals for the Molly game and the Denver game. 

I was kind of a curse to all-time candidate college football teams: I saw 2002 Miami annihilate Tennessee (their bid for history ended against OSU) and I attended Reggie Bush's 500-yard masterpiece in LA against Fresno State, my motive for attending being explicitly to see an all-time team while I had a chance.

The best pitcher I've seen in person is probably JV--I tried to go see Pedro in his epic '99 season, but he took the start off after tiring himself out in that incredible All-Star game and the Tigers rolled (still a fun game to attend, last time at Tiger Stadium). I saw a couple of all-timer races at MIS in the twilight of the CART Michigan 500 era, and I caught the 2001 US GP that included all-time great Michael Schumacher not winning. 

I saw the 2002 Red Wings in person, and in 1994 I witnessed an astonishing Pavel Bure end-to-end goal at the Joe. That's about it for the NHL.

And the best player I ever saw in an NFL uniform is easy: Barry Sanders.


June 8th, 2017 at 3:33 PM ^

Mark "the bird" Fidrych.

I was lucky to see him pitch twice in 1976, the year he won AL rookie of the year after starting 9-1 and finishing at 19-9.  He was dominating and fun-loving at the same time, I thought he'd pitch for 20 years and win 300+ games.  Sadly, it didn't go that way.  Cherish the moments. RIP, Mr. Fidrych.

yossarians tree

June 9th, 2017 at 1:12 PM ^

I was there for his first win! Sparse crowd, early season against the Indians. We snuck down to box seats on the first base line and you could clearly see Fidrych talking to the ball. Most people didn't have a clue who he was, but I knew everything about the Tigers and I understood that he was supposed to be real flakey. He was dominant. Everything was at the knees, great slider too. Two months later he was a national celebrity.


June 8th, 2017 at 3:37 PM ^

I've had a few...

#1) I was in Tiger Stadium when The Bird threw out his shoulder.  Maybe this isn't a good memory, but the atmosphere was still awesome.  And Jim Campbell got the standing O and a curtain call for throwing a 9-inning win in relief of a legend that we didn't know was finished too soon.

#2) I was at Bo's last game against OSU.  I still don't know how I was lucky enough to fall into those tickets!

#3) Seems dubious now, but back then watching an NBA'er drop 50 was something special.  Jordan seemed like the only player on the court that night against the Bullets.  It wasn't even a contest...


June 8th, 2017 at 3:42 PM ^

Or Robert fick hitting the ball out of tiger stadium, meaning out onto the street, at the tigers last at bat, with the bases loaded, at tiger stadium in 1999, and right after 'uncle gordie' (howe) had stopped by the seats for a visit.  it was pandemonium, people in blithering tears. Very cool.


June 8th, 2017 at 3:37 PM ^

In 1988, I was 11 years old and attended a Tigers vs. Yankees game with my boyscout troop.  The Tigers trailed all game and went into the bottom of the 9th down 6-1.  It was a weeknight and most of the other parents and kids left early.  My dad asked me if I wanted to stay and watch the game to its end.  I wanted to stick it out and my dad gamely agreed to stay.  The Tigers managed to score 2 more runs to make it 6-3.  Alan Trammell came up to bat with based loaded and two outs. He battled to a full count before hitting a walk off grand slam.  It was the peak of drama and it taught me never to leave early.


June 8th, 2017 at 3:37 PM ^

My 8 year old son's little league team was down 5 to nothing in the bottom of the last inning.  They scored 6 runs to win it.  This was easily the most thrilling and amazing accomplishment in the history of sport.

a different Jason

June 8th, 2017 at 3:41 PM ^

I was in an outdoor sporting goods store when about $300000 worth of merchandise fell off the racks and scattered on the floor. The sound of blued steel ringing with that pure note hard steel makes just hung in the air. This was in 1997 or 8, would be a million dollars today.


June 8th, 2017 at 3:46 PM ^

In person only... 

High school football - Probably Tyrod Taylor, Hampton High School. I was in college at Hampton University at the time. Just mentioning this  because he was really impressive. 

But the best ever was sadly LeBron James... May 31st, 2007. I was in the building as LeBron scored the final 25 points and 29 of the last 30.

Just unreal!  


uncle leo

June 8th, 2017 at 3:52 PM ^

Really stupid, because I have seen great pros of all sports relatively close up.

But in my rec basketball league, I have had the opportunity to play with high level former D2 basketball players on my team. And there's just something ACTUALLY being on the court with these guys and being able to watch them move and shoot and drive after you pass them the ball, it is just very unique. You understand why, even at the lowest levels of college why these guys are as good as they are. 

uncle leo

June 8th, 2017 at 4:20 PM ^

It is the perfect mechanics in which they apply themselves. (Which I guess can be considered the level lol)

These guys that are active on my team have the same release point, same form, the same freaking rotation on the ball every single time. 


June 8th, 2017 at 4:53 PM ^

I got a chance to workout/train briefly with Barry Sanders, in a few football drills while I was attending a football camp during my junior summer of high school, and Barry was practicing with a group of NFL players on an adjacent field.

Think he looks fast and able to change direction on a dime from the seats or living room couch? Try running with him. All I could do was gasp and then laugh.


June 8th, 2017 at 4:00 PM ^

Went to the Preds/Penguins game in Nashville the other night and that might have been the greatest sports atmosphere i've ever been apart of! UTL close behind. 


June 8th, 2017 at 4:03 PM ^

My buddy's brother was the kind snapper at the time, and we both being recruited by UofM (humble brag). He went to the PSU game in happy valley, and sat in the parent section. I happened to be sitting right next to his mom and dad. During the 3rd, michigans parents were booing Brady, and demanding Hanson. His poor mom never even watched the game because her hand was in her hands. The dad completely stoic. Anyways, GOAT orchestrated his comeback....ill tell this story too much.


June 8th, 2017 at 4:09 PM ^

Saw CC Sabathia vs. Justin Verlander in 2010 at Comerica Park when both were in their prime. It was a day game and I was unemployed at the time so the park was far from full. Bought cheap bleacher seats then sat in the front row of the upper deck directly behind the plate. Total mastery by both pitchers. I think the final score was 2-1 (we won) and both of them went deep in the game. Was an amazing experience.


I saw Tiger play in the 1996 US Open the year before he won the Masters. There was buzz about him but he wasn't Tiger Fucking Woods yet, obviously. I saw him play again at the 2004 Ryder Cup and the 2008 PGA Championships. Friend of the family is a member at Oakland Hills.


I saw Phish play a 35 minute Tweezer>Prince Caspian, 8/22/15. Absolutely epic.

Old Man Greene

June 8th, 2017 at 4:10 PM ^

Fort Lewis Washington after 14 months in Vietnam..as far as sports it was Nolan Ryan (Angels) pitching a No Hitter/16 K's and Norm Cash coming to bat with a Piano Leg in the 9th inning at Tiger Stadium