The Sports Stories We Were Most Thankful For In 2016

Really great sports moments make really great movies. And nothing says quality family time at Thanksgiving like touching movies. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the best, the most touching, the favorist (yeah, I’m making that a word) sports moments of 2016. The moments that made me so very thankful for the wonderful world of sports.

John Scott – All Star

The NHL should have known better when they let the internet pick the teams for the All-Star 3-on-3 game (Boaty McBoatface anyone?). This inevitably lead to a joke swarm of support for career journeyman, John Scott.

However, it was a great move. Not only could Scott have really used the money that came with the honor, but it was nice to know that fans really do appreciate career journeymen hockey players who struggle hard, goon harder and put up with a lot of shit.

The NHL tried to squash everyone’s dreams with some sneaky maneuvering, but Scott ended up winning the game in the end.

John Scott #28 of the Arizona Coyotes competes in the AMP Energy NHL Hardest Shot during the 2016 Honda NHL All-Star Skill Competition at Bridgestone Arena on January 30, 2016 in Nashville, Tennessee. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Not only was it the finest “sports” moment of 2016, it is also the “most likely to be turned into a heartfelt Disney film for the whole family starring John Hamm in 2019”.

Bartolo Colon Hits a Homer

To paraphrase John Madden, the best thing about a fat man scoring is a fat man dancing.

Every minute watching Colon is a fun minute. But his first career homer at age 42 was epic fun.

Man, I wish they would turn him into a movie, or at the very least, a TV show starring Gabriel Iglesias.

Pitt, USC & Iowa and the Unpredictability of Sports

The world is filled with villains & heroes, underdogs & upstarts, and uplifting drama & sickening tragedy. It all depends on perception and which flag you wave. This view is all the more prevalent in the world of sports, especially college football.

I’m thankful that nothing is ever set in stone and any week an underdog can take down a giant, or your hero can be sideswiped by an upstart … or both in the same game.

No week this year drove this point home more than the week of November 12. Top five ranked Clemson, Washington and Michigan all took losses in successive hours to Pitt, USC, and Iowa. Five days later, Louisville as the new number five, fell to Houston.

These upsets make college football must-watch TV each week.

And, yes, I swallowed my Washington alum pride including their loss.

Ryan Lochte

Sweet Christmas this guy was a fool. He unexpectedly became the poster boy for ‘How to Not Be An American Tourist.’

By now you know the story of how he and his friends drunkenly destroyed a gas station bathroom and then lied about it to the press before fleeing Brazil.

I’m not thankful for that controversy though. I’m thankful that John Oliver gave the world this sports moment:

I’m not even going to mention his TV show in fear it would be seen by more.

Ginny Thrasher – Bulls-eye Extraordinaire

Is there anything more American than someone named Ginny Thrasher winning gold as an underdog in rifling? Nope.

There were a lot of great moments at the Rio Olympics, but that was a hell of a way to get the first gold this year for Team USA.

This one has ‘CMT movie of the week’ written all over it with some Hallmark crossover appeal.

Virginia Thrasher of the United States competes in the 50m 3 Position Rifle qualifying match on Day 6 of the Rio 2016 Olympics at the Olympic Shooting Centre on August 11, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Samoa Greenwood/Getty Images)

Vin Scully’s Epic Sign-Off

After seeing just about everything there is to see in the sport, Scully finally turned off his mic for the last time this year.

One of America’s best storytellers ended his luxurious career with a walk-off home run. You would have to be a Giants fan to be the only kind of person who didn’t appreciate Scully or how his final broadcast went. There will never be another quite like him.

Personally, my favorite memory is hearing him give a history lesson of the D-Day invasion during a Dodgers-Cardinals game. He sprinkled tidbits and jaw-dropping stories throughout the game. I sat in my driveway and listened to every minute of it.

It is way past time Damian Lewis created a four-part mini-series for Showtime depicting Scully’s amazing career.

Brian Reddoch is a Crave reporter and rabid fan of all teams Seattle. You can follow him on Twitter @ReddReddoch or “like” CraveOnline Sports on Facebook.

Photo Credit: Getty