This week in sports history, March 26, 2019

March 27

Longest championship fight takes place

Arthur Chambers, a British lightweight boxer, gained recognition in America after his victory over Billy Edwards in 1872. On March 27, 1879, Chambers faced American Johnny Clark in Chippewa Falls, Canada, in what is known as the first great lightweight bout in history. This bout lasted 136 rounds for an elapsed time of two hours and 23 minutes before Chambers won by a knockout. The fight set the record for the longest bout between international opponents.

March 28

U.S. President George H. W. Bush awards Jesse Owens the Congressional Gold Medal

In the Berlin Olympic Games of 1936, Adolf Hitler hoped to prove his theory of Aryan racial superiority. Despite criticism and backlash, Jesse Owens, an African-American sprinter won four gold medals, in the 100m, 200m, 4x100m relay and the long jump. He also broke or equaled nine Olympic records and set three world records. After he died of lung cancer in 1980, U.S. President George H. W. Bush posthumously awarded him the Congressional Gold Medal for his humanitarian contributions on March 28, 1990. A street and school have also been named after him in Berlin, two U.S. postage stamps have been issued in his honor and a memorial park has been opened in Alabama, among other tributes.

March 30

Charlie Brown hits a baseball game-winning home run

One of the longest standing gags in the Peanuts comic strip is the neighborhood’s hopeless baseball team. Peanut wiki, a website devoted to the history of Charlie Brown’s baseball team, chronologizes the few games the fictional team has won over the years. One of these wins took place in a comic on March 30, 1993, when Charlie Brown hit his first home run, winning the game for the team. The home run was the first in 43 years of the comic.

April 1

NHL players begin first strike in 75-year history

On April 1, 1992, National Hockey League players (NHL) staged the first significant strike in the league’s 75-year history. The players voted almost unanimously for the strike with a vote of 560 to 4. They returned on April 11 after a bargain was reached. As a result, the players won more control of marketing rights— the use of their pictures on posters, trading cards, and so on–  and increased their share of playoff revenue from $3.2 million to $7.5 million. The 30 games which had been missed during the strike were rescheduled, allowing the full season and the playoffs to continue.

Leave a Reply