Jonathan Papelbon jumping for joy upon winning the 2007 World Series squares off against Nathan Horton’s Game 7 winner over the Lightning in the first round of Boston’s Greatest Sports Moment tournament.
8. Pap’s 2007 World Series jump for joyJonathan Papelbon burst onto the Boston scene and, in an instant, all the hard work he put into chasing his goals allowed him to elude gravity. In 2007, his second full season as a closer for the Red Sox, Papelbon excelled at the end of games. The right-hander out of Mississippi State compiled 37 saves during the regular season and stepped up his game in the postseason with four saves and just five hits allowed in 10 2/3 innings. To solidify his excellence, Papelbon came on in the eighth inning of Game 4 against the Colorado Rockies in the World Series. An addict for late-game dramatics, Papelbon struck out pinch-hitter Seth Smith to win the World Series and let his celebratory reflexes do the rest by jumping for joy.
9. Horton’s Game 7 winner over LightningThe Bruins kept making believers out of fans in their 2011 run to the Stanley Cup, and one goal in particular may have turned the most heads. In Game 7 of the Eastern Conference final against the Lightning, Nathan Horton put home a pretty pass from David Krejci with less than 10 minutes to play, and the Boston Bruins advanced to the Stanley Cup Final. Without Horton’s tally, Boston may not have advanced and eventually won the Cup. That goal united Boston fans — both the faithful that stuck with the team for 39 years between Cups, and the fans that strayed away at tough times. Before Horton’s score, the Lightning were 10-0 in Game 7s and had never lost a series after winning Game 1. With the strike, Horton also became the first player in NHL history to score the game-winner in two Game 7s in the same postseason.
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