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Against All Odds: 7 Times The Dark Horse Underdog Teams That Won

Underdog stories in sports are some of the most endearing that there are. A team or person going against all of the odds shows the resilience in the human spirit and this is why upsets appeal to fans. Some upsets will go down as some of the most memorable moments in sports of all time. The following 7 upsets will be matches or games that all fans have heard about and will live in legend forever.
The Miracle On Ice
The United States had a game against the Soviet Union in the Olympic Hockey Tournament in 1980. This game took place in the time of the Cold War between the US and the Soviet Union so the game had larger implications. If the United States could beat the USSR in their best game, then the war didn’t seem so bad. The Soviet team was stacked with talent while the US was comprised of relatively unknown players. The Americans beat the Soviets and went on to beat Finland for the gold medal in 1980.
Super Bowl III
This Super Bowl had the powerhouse Baltimore Colts going against the New York Jets. The Colts were favored by an amazing 18 points which in the early years of the NFL was an unheard of point spread. Johnny Unitas quarterbacked the Colts and was known for being a tough man’s man. On the other side, Joe Namath was a brash and flashy young quarterback who could be seen wearing a fur coat on the sidelines. Namath also guaranteed a victory which can be a public relations nightmare if the team loses. Fortunately for Namath and the Jets, they overcame the impossible and won 16-7.
Buster Douglas Defeats Mike Tyson
Mike Tyson was one of the most dominant boxers of all time. Tyson was also the man who won the heavyweight world title at the youngest age of 19. With his ferocious speed and power, Tyson’s knockouts were so brutal that many people had to turn away from the replay. Many boxing fans know about Douglas’ short reign as champion because in his next fight he was defeated by Evander Holyfield. The odds were stacked in Tyson’s favor but an early knockdown by Tyson of Douglas had Tyson fans fuming. The referee had one of the slowest 8 counts of all time and Tyson’s corner was sure they had another knockout. Tyson wore himself out as he had switched trainers and eventually was defeated by Douglas.
2004 NBA Finals — Pistons Beat Lakers
When the Pistons beat the Lakers in the 2004 NBA finals, many fans could not believe it. The Lakers had 4 future hall of famers in their lineup with O’Neal, Bryant, Payton, and Malone. Payton and Malone had come to the Lakers to win their first championship in the NBA. The Pistons came out with another idea with Ben Wallace dominating defensively and Richard Hamilton being an offensive mastermind. The Lakers were held to a franchise low in points in the playoffs and lost in 5 games.
2004 Summer Olympics — Argentina Wins Olympic Basketball Gold
The United States is a basketball juggernaut with the best players in the world. This is why losing the 2004 Summer Olympics gold medal in basketball hurt so badly. This loss led to a restructuring in how the teams were picked as many of the NBA players who were invited declined to enjoy free time and rehab injuries. Manu Ginobili of the San Antonio Spurs led the Argentinian team past the US team in one of the biggest upsets of USA basketball since the 1980’s.
2004 Red Sox Over The Yankees
The Yankees took a commanding 3 to 0 lead in this series and it looked like the curse of the Bambino was rearing its ugly head again. The Red Sox ended up coming back winning 4 straight games with a combination of dominating pitching and some good luck. The Sox went to win their first World Series in over 80 years and broke the stories curse.
1982-83 NC State Wolfpack Men’s Basketball Team
The NC State Wolfpack was led by a young Jim Valvano and were aptly name “The Heart Attack Kids” because of their last second heroics. The Pack almost didn’t make the tournament and got into the tournament after winning the ACC tournament receiving the automatic bid. In the championship the Pack was against the monsters that were the University of Houston. The team features future NBA hall of famers Hakeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler. On a last second shot with the team down, the shot went short and was dunked back in and pandemonium broke lose.
As you can see, being a favorite does not mean you will win. In fact, it means that your team could be on the losing end of one of these epic games. Teams many times are not measured by their skill but rather the heart that they play their respective sport with.

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