The Red Sox' 2004 World Series win squares off with Bill Russell's 30 point, 40-rebound performance in Game 7 of the 1962 NBA Finals in the second round of Boston's Greatest Sports Moment tournament.
1. Red Sox win 2004 World SeriesBy now, every Red Sox fan probably has replayed Joe Castiglione’s call of the final out of the 2004 World Series in his or her head hundreds, maybe even thousands of times: "[Keith] Foulke to the set, the 1-0 pitch, here it is … swing and a ground ball, stabbed by Foulke. He has it. He underhands to first. And the Boston Red Sox are the world champions. For the first time in 86 years, the Red Sox have won baseball's world championship. Can you believe it?" For Red Sox fans — whether they had been followers for 10, 20, 50 or even 86 years – the moment was surreal. With a full moon over Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Boston’s beloved Red Sox were finally champs for the first time since 1918. Their sweep over the Cardinals ended that infamous curse and sparked one of the largest championship celebrations Boston has ever seen.
8. Russell’s 40 rebounds in ’62 FinalsThe Celtics were seeking their fourth consecutive NBA championship when they met the Western Division champion Los Angeles Lakers in the 1962 NBA Finals. After falling behind 2-1 and 3-2 in the best-of-seven series, Boston forced a Game 7 at the Boston Garden on April 18. Faced with the daunting task of slowing the Lakers’ Elgin Baylor, the Celtics also were limited on the offensive end when Tom Heinsohn, Jim Loscutoff, Frank Ramsey and Tom Sanders all fouled out late in the contest. Without help from some of his top teammates, Russell had to elevate his game, and he did. The 6-foot-9 center scored 30 points, but made his greatest impact on the boards by corralling an astonishing 40 rebounds — the most in NBA Finals history. Thanks to Russell’s Game 7 dominance, the Celtics held on for a 110-107 win in overtime, and eventually went on to win another six titles over the next seven years.
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