One of the most memorable events of Spud Webb’s career was his dunk contest win, which took place on February 8, 1986, at the NBA All-Star Game Weekend in Dallas. Webb, the shortest player to ever participate in the competition to that time, went up against men who were, in some cases, a foot taller. In the end, size didn’t matter. Webb dazzled the crowd with his soaring dunks and bested teammate Dominique Wilkins, who had won the 1985 contest by beating Michael Jordan. (The NBA’s first slam dunk competition was held in 1984.)
Michael Vick, in his second NFL season with the Atlanta Falcons, made 15 starts, missing one game against the New York Giants on October 13 with a sprained shoulder. He completed 231 of 421 passes for 2,936 yards and 16 touchdowns. He had 113 carries for 777 yards and eight rushing touchdowns. Vick also set a then-NFL record for most rushing yards by a quarterback in a single a game with 173, in a 30-24 win over the Minnesota Vikings on December 1, broken by Colin Kaepernick (181) in 2013. Vick capped the win against the Vikings game with his second rushing touchdown that came on an incredible 46-yard run in the sudden-death period. That was the longest TD run ever by a quarterback in overtime.
Former U.S. boxing gold medalist, Muhammad Ali was also given a replacement gold medal for his boxing victory at the 1960 Summer Olympics. Ali had supposedly thrown his previous gold medal into the Ohio River after being refused entry into a restaurant. The United States would dominate the medal count, winning 44 gold medals (Russia was second with 26) and 101 total medals, beating second place Germany who finished with 65. However, it was the Canadians who stole the show in the two biggest events of the Olympics.
The men’s 100-meter race, which is widely considered the main event at any Summer Olympics, was won by Donovan Bailey in a world record time of 9.84 seconds. Bailey would also lead Canada to gold in the men’s 4 x 100 meter relay.
As the 1974 season began, Hank Aaron's pursuit of the record caused a small controversy. The Braves opened the season on the road in Cincinnati with a three-game series against the Cincinnati Reds. Braves management wanted him to break the record in Atlanta, and were therefore going to have Aaron sit out the first three games of the season. But Baseball Commissioner Bowie Kuhn ruled that he had to play two games in the first series. He played two out of three, tying Babe Ruth's record in his very first at bat — on his first swing of the season — off Reds pitcher Jack Billingham, but did not hit another home run in the series. The fence over which Hank Aaron hit his 715th career home run still exists outside of Turner Field.
The team returned to Atlanta, and on April 8, 1974, a crowd of 53,775 people showed up for the game—a Braves attendance record. The game was also broadcast nationally on NBC. In the fourth inning, Aaron hit career home run number 715 off Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Al Downing. Although Dodgers outfielder Bill Buckner nearly went over the outfield wall trying to catch it, the ball landed in the Braves’ bullpen, where relief pitcher Tom House caught it. While cannons were fired in celebration, two white college students sprinted onto the field and jogged alongside Aaron for part of his circuit around the bases, temporarily startling him. As the fans cheered wildly, Aaron’s parents ran onto the field as well.
This came 9 days after Kevin McHale scored 56 points to set a new Celtics scoring record. When McHale came out of that game, Bird told him he should go for 60 and then 9 days later, Bird proved that he should have.
One of the most memorable events of Webb’s career was his dunk contest win, which took place on February 8, 1986, at the NBA All-Star Game Weekend in Dallas. Webb, the shortest player to ever participate in the competition to that time, went up against men who were, in some cases, a foot taller. In the end, size didn’t matter. Webb dazzled the crowd with his soaring dunks and bested teammate Dominique Wilkins, who had won the 1985 contest by beating Michael Jordan. (The NBA’s first slam dunk competition was held in 1984.)
Webb retired from basketball in 1998, after 12 seasons in the NBA. He was said to have paved the way for other height-challenged NBA players, including 5’5” Earl Boykins and 5’3” Muggsy Bogues. In 2006, 5’9” Nate Robinson of the New York Knicks became the second-shortest player to emerge victorious in the NBA slam dunk contest. Spud Webb was on hand in Dallas for the event and during one dunk, Robinson jumped over him and put the ball through the hoop.