Sports History: Jan. 21, 2020

January 21

Lendl beats Becker

In 1986, tennis player Ivan Lendl, a Czech athlete who won eight titles at the majors and seven year-end championships, defeated Boris Becker. Becker is an athlete from Germany holding five year-end championships and an Olympic gold medal in doubles. Lendl defeating Becker led to Lendl claiming the season-ending ATP Masters Grand Prix title for the third time at Madison Square Garden in New York. The first win was in 1982 with the second in 1983. Lendl went on to win two more times until Becker defeated him in 1988.


January 22

Two legends inducted into MLB Hall of Fame

Two MLB legends, Roy Campanella and Stan Musial, were inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1969. Campanella was the catcher for the Brooklyn Dodgers from 1948 to 1957 and received the MVP award three times while in the National League until he retired in 1957 due to an automobile accident. Musial was an outfielder and first baseman for the St. Louis Cardinals and a three-time World Series champion as well as a three-time MVP award recipient. 


January 23

50 goals in 50 games

In 1981, Mike Bossy became the second player in the NHL to score 50 goals in 50 games. Bossy played for the New York Islanders for the entirety of his career and was a critical part of the team when the Islanders had a four-year reign as Stanley Cup champions in the 1980s. Bossy was up against the Quebec Nordiques and in intense competition with Charlie Simmer to see who could reach 50 goals first following Maurice Richard in 1945. 


January 24

Dodgers’ largest contract

Jackie Robinson signed a $35,000 contract, an equivalent of $371,929 adjusted for inflation, with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1950, the highest any Dodger had been paid to that point. Robinson was a second baseman and contributed to leaps in progress to end racial segregation in professional baseball. Robinson won multiple awards throughout his career and was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1962. 


January 25

First Winter Olympics

In 1924, the French Olympic committee organized an International Winter Sports Week, which would later become the modern Winter Olympic Games. The week was held in a town in southern France called Chamonix and included activities such as bobsleighing, curling, skiing and ice hockey. While the event was small in nature, the International Olympic Committee took hold of the idea and designated it as the first Winter Olympics.  


January 26

First Australian Women’s Open Winner

Margaret Court, an Australian champion, beat Billie Jean King, an American athlete, in the first Australian Open Women’s Tennis competition in 1969. Court went on to win two consecutive Opens after this and won again in 1973. 


January 27

Archie Moore retains title

In 1954, Archie Moore beat Joey Maxim in a 15 round fight for the light heavyweight boxing title. The fight took place at the Orange Bowl in Miami and was the last in a famous trilogy of fights won by Moore for the title. 

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