Biggest Blunders in Sports History
"With the second pick in the 1984 NBA Draft,
the Portland Trail Blazers select Sam Bowie,
center from the University of Kentucky"
2003.1.27 by J-Dawg

With those words from David Stern, the Blazers were sentenced to scrutiny and ridicule for the rest of their existence. I heard the reasoning behind the decision, but it still doesn't sit well with me. You see, the year before, Portland had drafted the man who would go on to become the greatest player in franchise history, a member of Phi Slamma Jamma, a future eight time All-Star, and future gold medal winner. Of course, I'm talking about Clyde "The Glide" Drexler. Why on earth would Portland want to draft another shooting guard the very next year? Two reasons - First, take the best available player on the board, regardless of position. Second, that man was Michael Fucking Jordan!!! I mean come on, Sam Bowie? And about having two great players at one position, look at the Houston Rockets of the same year. In 1983 they drafted Ralph Sampson from Virginia, who was a 7-4 center who could score and defend, with the first overall pick. The very next year, after missing the playoffs, they had the number one pick again. Who did they pick, you ask? None other then Hakeem "The Dream" Olajuwon, center from the University of Houston. But I thought they had just drafted a center the year before? No matter, in Olajuwon's rookie year the Rockets made the playoffs. But it all came together in 1985-1986, when the Rockets, playing both Sampson and Olajuwon, went to the NBA Finals against Larry Bird and the Boston Celtics, losing in 6. Now think if Portland had put Drexler and Jordan on the court at the same time. How many titles could have been won? Unfortunately, we will never know.

Boston Celtics draft Len Bias with the second overall pick in 1986
Bias OD's on cocaine on draft night, and dies the next day. I guess the curse of the bambino doesn't just hurt the Red Sox. Which brings us to our next topic.

Boston Red Sox sell Babe Ruth to the Yankees.
Nothing more needs to be said about this.

Chris Webber calls non-existent time out.
Maybe he wanted to count all the money he was getting from Michigan boosters.

Leon Lett returns a fumble in Super Bowl XXVII.
Only to slow down and showboat, allowing Don Beebe to catch up and strip the ball. Or perhaps,

Thanksgiving Day, in Dallas, in the snow, in 1993.
Pete Stoyanovich has a field goal attempt blocked, ball bounces around, here comes Leon Lett sliding in, touching the ball, which then becomes live, which Miami then recovers, and Stoyanovich gets a second chance, which he makes.

Vinny Testaverde gets stopped just inside the 1-yard line. Refs decide that's close enough. " We mistook his pure white, shiny helmet for a inflated piece of pigskin" Welcome back instant replay.

Brett Hull sets up a tent in the crease, scores Stanley Cup winning goal.
First "Wide Right!!" then three more consecutive Super Bowl losses, then the Sabres lose. God it must suck to be a Buffalo sports fan.

Refs decide Colorado should get five downs to score against Missouri.
1-2-3-3-4 is taught as correct counting in Colorado schools from then on.

Jerome Bettis calls "tails".
Entire nation hears Bettis call "tails". Referee Phil Luckett hears Bettis call "heads". Luckett must have his head up his tail.

I'm sure that there are more blunders that I have missed, ones that could have affected teams that you like, but I don't care. These are the ones that I remembered off the top of my head. If I forgot one, I don't really give a fuck, if I do a sequel to this column, I might include it. If not, tough shit.

This is my old project, THROWDOWN.

A group of friends and I put together this little project in 2003 as an outlet of out collective rage and anger about the subjects that each of us cared about. I was the editor-and-chief and games writer back then.

It was a blast to do and it to be involved in a great collaborative effort using the strengths of my friends was simply amazing. I hope you have fun reading our work as much as we had in creating it.

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