The Best Sports Moments of 2018

As 2018 comes to a close, it’s time to start reflecting on the events of the past year. This year, in particular, had some incredible sports moments, including historic wins and amazing comebacks that thrilled and shocked us, and reminded us of why we cherish sports so much. Here are just five great sports moments from this past year that you’ll want to relive:

1. Yuzuru Hanyu Repeats as Olympic Champion in Men’s Figure Skating

Japanese figure skater Yuzuru Hanyu repeated as Olympic champion despite the odds stacked against him.

(Credit: Study Breaks)

Just months before the 2018 Olympics in Pyeongchang, Japanese figure skater Yuzuru Hanyu injured his ankle while in practice, placing doubts in the minds of many people. They were unsure whether Hanyu, the reigning Olympic champion, would be able to skate in the Olympics at all, much less repeat the success he had in Sochi in 2014 to take the title again. Yet, Hanyu shut down the doubts in anyone’s mind as soon as his blades hit the ice for the short program portion of the competition. He performed perfectly and followed that up with a flawless free skate that, again, earned him the gold medal. Hanyu became the first figure skater to repeat as Olympic champion since American skater Dick Button did so in 1948 and 1952. He also won the hearts of many viewers in the process – after every one of Hanyu’s performances, hundreds of stuffed Pooh Bears, which has become a symbol of sorts for the skater, were thrown onto the ice.

2. Rafael Nadal Wins the Undecima at the French Open

Rafael Nadal proved yet again that he’s the “King of Clay” when he took an 11th Roland-Garros title.

(Credit: Roland Garros)

People thought it was an incredible feat for Rafael Nadal to win a 10th title at Roland-Garros in 2017 but, who could’ve imagined he’d win a historic 11th? The Spanish tennis player proved yet again that he is, and always will be, the “King of Clay” when he took his 11th title at the French Open this past June. Even more unbelievable is that Nadal, a veteran of the sport at age 32, faced hardly any opposition on his way back to the top – he dropped only one set during the entire tournament and defeated Dominic Thiem of Austria (considered by many to be the next best clay court player behind Nadal) in an easy three sets in the final. Nadal broke even more records during the 2018 clay season when he won an 11th title in Monte Carlo and Rome, and he also became the first man to win 50 consecutive sets on the clay surface.

3. The Washington Capitals Make History by Winning Their First Stanley Cup

After years of falling short in the playoffs, the Washington Capitals finally got their glory by winning their first Stanley Cup.

(Credit: Baltimore Sun) 

After making the playoffs for the past three years only to fall short every time, the Washington Capitals finally won their first Stanley Cup this June, 20 years after the team made their first Stanley Cup final. They defeated the Vegas Golden Knights four games to one, winning the first championship title for a major Washington, D.C. sports team in 26 years. Their win was in large part due to team captain Alexander Ovechkin, who scored his first Stanley Cup finals goal and was awarded the Conn Smythe Trophy for being the most valuable player.

4. Simone Biles Returns to Gymnastics, Regains Her Crown, and Shows that She Truly is the Greatest Gymnast of All Time

Simone Biles’ wins at the 2018 World Championships made history and further solidified her place as the greatest gymnast ever.

(Credit: Spokesman)

Gymnastics is a difficult sport to return to after a gymnast takes time off, and it’s even harder to do so as an “old” gymnast, which Simone Biles is considered at the young age of 21. Couple that with the insane pressure of being the greatest gymnast of all time, and you have one of the most anticipated comebacks in the sport. Yet, Biles proved that she was unfazed by all those trivialities; she easily dominated at the U.S. Classic, her first competition back, winning gold in the all-around, on floor, and on balance beam. She won first on every event at U.S. Nationals in August and went on to win a fourth World Championships all-around title at the World Championships in Doha, Qatar, in October. Earning a total of six medals in Qatar, Biles became the first American gymnast to win a medal on every apparatus and further proved that she is truly the greatest gymnast of all time.

5. The Red Sox Easily Defeat the Dodgers to Win a Ninth World Series

The Red Sox dominated in the 2018 baseball season and made history while doing so.

(Credit: USA Today)

The Red Sox had a phenomenal 2018 season in which they made history, broke records, and of course, won their ninth World Series title. They repeated as the American League East division champions for a third straight time, leading the second-place Yankees by eight games, and broke their own record of 105 wins in a season in 1912.  In the World Series, they easily defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers, dropping only one game to win the title in five games, and earned their fourth title in the past 15 years.

2018 gave us amazing moments in sports that we will remember for a lifetime, and 2019 is only likely to bring us even more!

 

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