Top 10 Most Amazing Sports Plays of 2016

Let me start by saying this list was nearly impossible to put together.

2016 was, without question, the toughtest year I’ve ever had ranking top plays. The year was full of the most clutch performances we’ve likely ever seen. Toss in a few of the most random, eye-popping plays from around the world, and we have ourselves one of the most memorable sports years in decades.

Again, this is a very tough list to quantify. So feel free to tell us what we missed. Just be gentle.

numbers 10The bare-handed line drive grab

Brady Bowen, minor league pitcher in the Cardinals organization, proved he has a bionic hand.

(Watch after the jump)

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numbers 9Kris Bryant smiles making last out to win W.S.

The Cubs third baseman felt no pressure while making the final out of the World Series to break the team’s 108-year-old curse.

numbers 8LeBron’s clutch Game 7 block

Not only did this play solidify the Cavs’ amazing 1-3 come-from-behind series victory, it capped off an amazing fourth quarter that held one of the NBA’s all-time best teams scoreless. This block will also go down as one of the best defensive plays in NBA history and will define LeBron’s career.

numbers 7Nick Martinez, behind-the-back catch

You know who didn’t look impressed the slightest? The opposing manager.

(Watch after the jump)

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numbers 6The high school championship run for the ages

The newest play on this list comes from a Pennsylvania high school state championship game.

Steel Valley running back Najheir West collapses into the endzone after an exhausting 60-yard TD run that mandated multiple spin moves, countless twists and turns through a wall of defenders and more timely footwork than a Dean Martin special.

(Watch after the jump)

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numbers 5The NW Missouri State lateral 

Unless you live in the midwest or are an absolute college football fanatic, you’ve never even heard of Northwest Missouri State. But the team pulled off the best lateral play since the Music City Miracle this fall against Pittsburg State.

(Watch after the jump)

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numbers 4Vijay Singh sinks hole-in-one off water at Masters

So it was a practice shot, but still one purposely attempted by the master-craftman. It doesn’t matter the shot looks like the Zapruder film. It blew our minds.

numbers 3Northern Iowa’s buzzer beater from half court

Paul Jesperson sounds like the name of your local handy-man, but this kid will be forever ingrained in every major March Madness highlight reel until the end of time. You just don’t see buzzer beaters like this every March Madness, especially from half court. It’s the most impressive NCAA buzzer beater of the decade.

numbers 2Aussie’s behind-the-backboard buzzer beater

Now we’re looking at a buzzer beater from down-undAH. Two prep teams, one-point ball game, then a buzzer beater to end all buzzer beaters. It’s a shot only seen in H-O-R-S-E … until now.

(See multiple angles here)

numbers 1‘Nova’s buzzer beater over UNC for NCAA title 

Although the two previous buzzer beaters may have been slightly more impressive, this was by-far the most notable.

Villanova won their first title in three decades after upsetting Roy Williams’ Tar Heels with an unreal dish-and-swish from behind the arc as time expired. Kris Jenkins and 2016 Villanova are now immortalized. This will go down as one of the best clutch plays in college basketball history.

Honorable Mention:

New world record basketball shot from top of dam

ETSU players knock down consecutive half court shots for students’ free tuition

Ryder Cup heckler sinks $100 putt

Billy Hamilton sprints 123 feet to make amazing diving catch

Buster Posey’s magic toss to Jake Peavy

Mike Hucker Clark’s insane BMX trick – best ever?

Max Scherzer’s record-tying 20 Ks

Pat Dickert, 6-foot-2, dunks from free throw line

The greatest comeback in 4×400 history

See 2015’s best plays here.


Josh Helmuth is the editor of Crave Sports.

Photo Credit: Getty