Red Sox

Sunday Mail: What Is The Most Iconic Moment In Boston Sports History? Is There Just One?


Know what’s worse than a Sunday when there’s no Patriots game?

A Sunday when my wife remembers they played Thursday and knows there’s no Patriots game.

I just don’t see the point of raking the leaves twice in one weekend. Or once, really.

But before the pine spills beckon again (pro tip: mowing is so much more efficient than raking leaves), let’s knock out a one-shot mailbox on a timeless topic that is worthy of consideration much deep than this.

From Gareth, a question that spurred from the 10-year anniversary of Dave Roberts’s steal and the dramatic prologue to our about-to-be fulfilled existence as Red Sox fans:

I think he’s rattled off the consensus top three there, right? NESN put together a project on this a year or so ago — not surprisingly, it seemed slightly weighted toward the Bruins and Red Sox — and Orr’s Cup-clinching goal in 1970 won the bracket. Tough to argue with this:

But that’s the coolest aspect of this debate. You can argue it. Enjoyably, passionately, and without a conclusion. After all, Orr’s goal completed a sweep — it was sudden-death in that particular game, but not for the season by any stretch.

So perhaps an Adam Vinatieri field goal or a David Ortiz home run deserves top-spot consideration. Of course, then you’re presented with another pleasant dilemma.

Which Vinatieri field goal?

Which Ortiz home run?

And we haven’t even discussed Carlton Fisk waving it fair, Game 6, ’75 (does it get docked status because the Sox lost the World Series), or anything Pedro, and hell, how do we pick one moment when we could choose from 50 submitted by Larry Bird alone?

I do not know how to narrow it to just one above the others, though I suppose I’d give the nod to the Orr goal because the photo of the immediate aftermath of the goal — Orr suspended in midair, Orr suspended in time — apparently adorns the walls of more sports bars in New England than any photo adorns any other gathering place in any other part of the country.


But I do think that that because we have so many incredible moments to choose from, what tends to happen is that the one you remember the most fondly is the one that changed something significantly with the team that plays your favorite sport.

If you love the Red Sox more than any other Boston team, Roberts’s life-altering steal (no, that is not hyperbole, either) is probably your No. 1, if not some other remarkable plot-twist in October 2004. As a Pats fan, Vinatieri’s first Super Bowl-winning kick is something that probably never seemed possible during so many melodramas and punch-line seasons along the way. If it’s the Celtics, well, … unless you’re older (then it may Havlicek’s steal) or younger (the Paul Pierce redemption).

But the one thing we can all agree on? Holy cow, have we been blessed as sports fans. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to make like Big Papi in October ’14 and rake.

Until next week, the mailbox is closed. Exit music, please.

Cliched? Sure. Like that’s stopping me. After discussing all of the above moments and watching the videos, I couldn’t think of anything more appropriate. Though “Another One Bites the Dust” works on a different level, I suppose.

Jump To Comments


This discussion has ended. Please join elsewhere on