LA’s 100 Greatest Moments (To 1995)

Here is the list of the 100 top moments in L.A. sports history as described in the 1995 book, "Unforgettable: The 100 Greatest Moments in Los Angeles Sports History."

Compiled through a poll of more than 5,000 area media and sports enthusiasts, this list covers the period from 1880 (founding of the Los Angeles Athletic Club) through 1995.

  1. 1988: Kirk Gibson's ninth-inning home run wins Game 1 of the World Series and sparks the Dodgers to 4-1 Series triumph over the Oakland A's.

  2. 1984: Peter Ueberroth and the Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee revolutionize the organization of the Games and realize a $232.5 million surplus as a record 140 nations attend the Games.

  3. 1974: Anthony Davis's second half kickoff return for a touchdown sparks a 49-0 second half explosion as USC routs Notre Dame, 55-24 at the Coliseum.

  4. 1975: UCLA basketball legend John Wooden caps his coaching career with a 92-85 NCAA title win over Kentucky for the Bruins' 10th championship in 12 seasons.

  5. 1967: O.J. Simpson's 64-yard touchdown run helps USC edge top-ranked UCLA, 21-20, propelling the Trojans to No. 1 on the way to the national championship.

  6. 1980: Lakers All-Star rookie guard Earvin "Magic" Johnson subs for injured Kareem Abdul-Jabbar at center and scores 42 points to lead L.A. to 4-2 NBA finals win over the Philadelphia 76ers.

  7. 1965: Dodger Hall of Famer Sandy Koufax pitches his fourth no-hitter - this time a perfect game - in beating the Chicago Cubs, 1-0.

  8. 1932: The Games of the Xth Olympiad are held in Los Angeles, hosting 37 nations and the first Olympic Village, plus unforgettable performances from athletes including gold-medal winning swimmer Clarence "Buster" Crabbe and track star Babe Didriksen.

  9. 1984: Running back Marcus Allen gains 191 yards and scored twice to lead the L.A. Raiders to a 38-9 rout of the Washington Redskins in Super Bowl XVIII at Tampa.

  10. 1958: Duke Snider's two hits help the Dodgers to a 6-5 win over the San Francisco Giants in the opener of the 1958 season, the Dodgers' first in Los Angeles before a major-league record crowd of 78,672 in the Coliseum.

  11. 1985: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar scores 29 points, James Worthy, 28 and Magic Johnson piles up a triple-double to lead the Lakers to a 111-100 win to wrap up their third NBA title of the 1980s, this time over the Boston Celtics, at the Boston Garden!

  12. 1993: Wayne Gretzky scores three goals and assists on a fourth to lead the Kings to the Western Conference title with a heart-pounding 5-4 win at Toronto over the Maple Leafs to propel the Kings to their first Stanley Cup final.

  13. 1988: The Lakers make good on Coach Pat Riley's prediction of back-to-back NBA championships with a frantic 108-105 win over Detroit in the seventh game of the NBA finals.

  14. 1959: Little-known reliever Larry Sherry wins two games and saves two others as the Dodgers win their first World Series title in Los Angeles, 4-2, over the Chicago White Sox.

  15. 1972: Lakers complete a brilliant season, which included a record 33-game winning streak, with a 4-1 triumph in the NBA Finals over the New York Knicks for their first NBA title in Los Angeles.

  16. 1963: Ace Sandy Koufax wins two games to lead the Dodgers to a stunning four-game sweep of the New York Yankees in the World Series.

  17. 1988: Dodger Orel Hershiser breaks the major-league record of former Dodger Don Drysdale for consecutive scoreless innings with 59 by pitching 10 shutout innings against the San Diego Padres before giving way to relievers in a 2-1 Dodger loss.

  18. 1972: The Lakers go undefeated for more than two months, winning 33 games in a row behind Wilt Chamberlain, Jerry West, Gail Goodrich and coach Bill Sharman, finally setting a league record with 69 wins in 82 regular-season games.

  19. 1981: Fernando-mania reaches a new high as lefty Fernando Valenzula wins the Cy Young and Rookie of the Year awards and the Dodgers reach the World Series, hammering the Yankees in six games to win their first World Series title in 15 years.

  20. 1951: The Los Angeles Rams, behind quarterbacks Bob Waterfield and Norm Van Brocklin, edge the Cleveland Browns, 24-17, to win L.A.'s first major professional sports title.

  21. 1994: A cheering crowd 93,134 fans at the Rose Bowl saw the first U.S. victory in the World Cup since 1950 as USA beat Colombia, 2-1, on an Ernie Stewart goal and a Colombian miscue that led to an own goal.

  22. 1973: Unstoppable UCLA rolled to a record 61st straight basketball victory (on the way 88 straight) behind All-Americans Bill Walton and Keith Wilkes with a 82-63 win at Notre Dame.

  23. 1980: A lightly-considered L.A. Rams squad led the Pittsburgh Steelers 19-17 after three quarters in its first-ever Super Bowl, but succumbed to Terry Bradshaw and Co., 31-19, in Super Bowl XIV at the Rose Bowl.

  24. 1984: Carl Lewis duplicates the four-gold-medal feat of the legendary Jesse Owens, winning the 100 m, 200 m, long jump and anchoring the 4 x 100-meter relay in the 1984 Olympic Games.

  25. 1988: The Impossible Dream comes true for Kings fans as "The Great One," Wayne Gretzky, is traded from Edmonton to Los Angeles.

  26. 1966: Heavy underdog UCLA outlasts Michigan State in the Rose Bowl, 14-12, as 175-pound Bruin defensive back Bob Stiles stops 212-pound MSU fullback Bob Apisa on the goal line on a last-minute two-point conversion try.

  27. 1968: Dodger great Don Drysdale pitches six consecutive shutouts and sets a major league record of 58 2/3 scoreless innings from May 14 to June 8.

  28. 1975: Flame-throwing right-hander Nolan Ryan pitches his fourth career no-hitter - tying him with Sandy Koufax for the most by one pitcher - blanking the Baltimore Orioles at Anaheim Stadium.

  29. 1959: Dodger fans salute Hall of Fame catcher Roy Campanella with an emotional match-light tribute before 93,103 at the Coliseum during a rare in-season exhibition game with the New York Yankees.

  30. 1989: Kings great Wayne Gretzky becomes the greatest point scorer in NHL history, passing Gordie Howe of Detroit with three points in an overtime win against his former Edmonton team.

  31. 1954: Undefeated UCLA mauls USC, 34-0, to confirm its No. 1 ranking on the way to a 9-0 season and the 1954 national championship.

  32. 1972: Trojan sophomore Anthony Davis scores six touchdowns against a stunned Notre Dame team as USC overpowered the Irish, 45-23, on the way to the 1972 national championship.

  33. 1962: Shortstop Maury Wills powers the "Go-Go" Dodgers with a major-league record 104 stolen bases, breaking the mark of the legendary Ty Cobb.

  34. 1963: USC clinches the first national championship of the John McKay era by outlasting Wisconsin's 30-point final quarter barrage, 42-37, in the Rose Bowl.

  35. 1965: Bruin sophomore Gary Beban heaves fourth-quarter touchdown passes to Dick Witcher and Kurt Altenberg to stun USC and Heisman Trophy winner Mike Garrett, 20-16.

  36. 1939: Undefeated and unscored-on Duke has its season implode as USC reserve quarterback Doyle Nave and end Al Kreuger team up for a last-minute touchdown and a 7-0 USC win in the Rose Bowl.

  37. 1986: Bobby Grich singles home reserve catcher Jerry Narron to lead the Angels back from a three-run deficit to a 4-3 win in Game 4 of the American League Championship Series.

  38. 1973: UCLA All-American center Bill Walton connects on 21 of 22 shots from the field as his 44 points lead the Bruins to their seventh straight NCAA title, 87-66, over Memphis State.

  39. 1947: UCLA alumnus and All-American Jackie Robinson breaks baseball's color barrier as a member of the Brooklyn Dodgers at Ebbets Field during a 5-3 season-opening win over the Boston Braves.

  40. 1931: 300,000 Angelenos welcome home USC's national championship football team, fresh from a stunning 16-14 win over undefeated Notre Dame at South Bend.

  41. 1960: UCLA alumni Rafer Johnson (USA) and C.K. Yang (Taiwan) battle for Olympic decathlon supremacy in Rome with Johnson winning by 58 points with a new Olympic Record of 8,392.

  42. 1975: Quarterback Pat Haden found end Shelton Diggs for a two-point conversion with two minutes to play to win the third straight Rose Bowl match-up with Ohio State, 18-17.

  43. 1967: Little-used end Max McGee catches two touchdowns from game MVP Bart Starr as Green Bay throttled Kansas City, 35-10, to win the inaugural AFL-NFL Championship Game (now the Super Bowl) at the Coliseum.

  44. 1978: Rookie right-hander Bob Welch strikes out Yankee Hall of Famer slugger Reggie Jackson on 11 straight fastballs to preserve a 4-3 Dodger win in Game 2 of the World Series.

  45. 1970: Lakers guard Jerry West, "Mr. Clutch," sends Game 3 of the NBA Finals into overtime with an impossible 63-foot shot from the backcourt at the buzzer.

  46. 1948: Ben Hogan sets a course record of 275 to win the Los Angeles Open at Riviera, then takes the U.S. Open on the same course with a 276 just a few months later.

  47. 1968: A healthy Lew Alcindor dominates Houston and Elvin Hayes as UCLA crushes Houston, 101-69 in the NCAA semis, revenging its earlier loss and paving the way for the Bruins' second straight national title, at the L.A. Memorial Sports Arena.

  48. 1982: The "Miracle on Manchester" as the Kings overcome a 5-0 deficit to defeat defending Stanley Cup champion Edmonton, 6-5, in overtime, in Game 3 of a first-round series.

  49. 1964: USC quarterback Craig Fertig and end Rod Sherman team for a last-minute touchdown to stun previously-unbeaten and top-ranked Notre Dame, 20-17, at the Coliseum.

  50. 1929: California's Roy Riegels runs the wrong way with a Georgia Tech fumble, ending up at his own one and helping Tech to an 8-7 win in the Rose Bowl.

  51. 1973: USC fullback Sam "Bam" Cunningham scores four touchdowns as the Trojans clinch the national title with a convincing 42-17 win over Ohio State in the Rose Bowl.

  52. 1964: A stunning full-court press and guards Walt Hazzard and Gail Goodrich lead John Wooden's UCLA Bruins to a 30-0 record and their first NCAA basketball title, a 98-83 rout of Duke in the championship game.

  53. 1967: Coach George Allen's never-say-die Rams block a fourth-quarter punt by Donny Anderson to overcome NFL champion Green Bay, 27-24, and then stomp Baltimore, 34-10, to win the Coastal Division title with an 11-1-2 record.

  54. 1993: A united bidding effort led by the L.A. Sports Council lands the 1993 Super Bowl for the Rose Bowl, considered one of the best ever organized, with Dallas beating Buffalo, 52-17.

  55. 1979: Designated hitter Don Baylor wins the American League's Most Valuable Player award as the Angels win their first-ever Western Division championship.

  56. 1949: Twenty-one-year-old Pancho Gonzales of east Los Angeles defended his U.S. Open title coming from two sets down to defeat Wimbledon champ Ted Schroeder in five sets.

  57. 1984: Lakers great Kareem Abdul-Jabbar sets the all-time individual scoring record, surpassing Wilt Chamberlain with a 14-foot sky hook from the right baseline against the Utah Jazz.

  58. 1984: Diminutive Mary Lou Retton delivers perfection on the vault and her 10.00 score earns her the gold medal in the Olympic Individual All-Around competition at Pauley Pavilion.

  59. 1990: USC's Todd Marinovich loops a last-minute touchdown pass to Johnnie Morton as the Trojans outlast UCLA in the series' wildest game, 45-42, at the Rose Bowl.

  60. 1932: Texas teenager Mildred "Babe" Didriksen wins gold medals in the 80-meter Hurdles and the Javelin, plus a silver in the High Jump at the 1932 Olympic Games.

  61. 1984: Ram running back Eric Dickerson breaks O.J. Simpson's single-season NFL rushing record with 2,105 yards.

  62. 1959: Ken Venturi's amazing final-round 63 overcomes an eight-shot final-round deficit and wins the Los Angeles Open by two shots over a surprised Art Wall.

  63. 1956: Long Beach native Pat McCormick rallies from behind to win the platform competition in the 1956 Olympic Games and complete a double-double sweep of the 1952 and 1956 women's diving titles.

  64. 1975: Freshman Willie Banks sets an American Junior Record of 55-1 in the triple jump to vault from third to first and give UCLA a pulsating 75-70 dual meet over USC before an overflow crowd of 15,000-plus at Drake Stadium.

  65. 1954: USC alumnus and Olympic gold medalist Parry O'Brien breaks the 60-foot barrier in the shot put at 60-5 1/4 in a special competition during the USC-UCLA dual meet.

  66. 1921: USC's Charley Paddock - the "World's Fastest Human" - sets three world records and ties a fourth in the 100 yards, 100 meters, 300 yards and 300 meters in one day!

  67. 1973: USC rallies from a seven-run deficit against Minnesota in the ninth inning in the College World Series on their way to the ninth NCAA title of the 11 won under coach Rod Dedeaux.

  68. 1946: Bonita High School product Glenn Davis of Army wins the Heisman Trophy as the nation's top collegiate football player.

  69. 1984: Coach Al Scates' dynastic UCLA volleyball squad wins its fourth NCAA title in a row three months before three Bruins help the USA to Olympic gold in the 1984 Games.

  70. 1973: Coach Jim Bush watches his UCLA track and field team win its third NCAA title in a row by 25 points over Oregon, winning the mile relay for the fifth year (of six) in a row.

  71. 1956: The "Touchdown Twins" Randy Meadows of Downey and Mickey Flynn of Anaheim meet in the CIF Southern Section title game before 41,383 at the Coliseum in a 13-13 tie.

  72. 1993: Long Beach's All-Stars repeat as Little League World Series Champions by beating Panama City, 3-2, before 40,000 fans at Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

  73. 1943: USC's Dean Cromwell wins his ninth NCAA track and field title in a row, with just four athletes, one of a dozen national championships won by his Trojan teams.

  74. 1966: The winningest jockey of all time, Johnny Longden, caps his career with a final ride win aboard George Royal in the San Juan Capistrano Handicap at Santa Anita.

  75. 1988: El Dorado High School swim star Janet Evans smiles her way to three gold medals, one world record, one Olympic Record and an American Record in the Seoul Olympic Games.

  76. 1947: L.A. native Jack Kramer defends his U.S. Open tennis title, coming back from an 0-2 deficit to overtake Frank Parker in three sets in his last major event as an amateur.

  77. 1988: Former UCLA star Jackie Joyner-Kersee sets a world record in the heptathlon and an Olympic Record in the long jump on the way to two gold medals in the Seoul Olympic Games.

  78. 1984: All-American Cheryl Miller and twins Paula and Pam McGee lead a dominant USC women's basketball team to their second consecutive national title.

  79. 1952: L.A. native Sammy Lee defends his Olympic title with a near-perfect performance in platform diving at the Helsinki Olympic Games.

  80. 1978: All-American Ann Meyers leads UCLA's women's basketball squad to the AIAW national championship over Maryland before a frenzied crowd of 9,351 at Pauley Pavilion.

  81. 1975: Former Long Beach travel agent Chris Pook organizes the inaugural Grand Prix of Long Beach, with 75,000 on hand to see England's Brian Redman take the checkered flag.

  82. 1902: Fielding Yost's "Point-A-Minute" Michigan Wolverines crush Stanford, 49-0, in the first Rose Bowl football game.

  83. 1992: UCLA pitching sensation Lisa Fernandez's fourth straight shutout in the College World Series earns the Bruins another national championship.

  84. 1956: Compton College freshman Charles Dumas clears the magical seven-foot barrier to win the 1956 Olympic Trials high jump in the Coliseum.

  85. 1960: Lakers star Elgin Baylor sets an NBA record for most points scored in one game with 71 against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden.

  86. 1977: Powered by a record 15 All-Americans, coach Peter Daland's USC swim squad wins his ninth NCAA championship, this time by 181 points!

  87. 1935: The inaugural Santa Anita Handicap offers an incredible purse of $100,000 and draws 34,269 to see Azucar win and put Santa Anita on the racing map to stay.

  88. 1952: San Diego's Florence Chadwick completes the dangerous Catalina Island-mainland swim in a new record of 13:47:33.

  89. 1984: Joan Benoit wins the inaugural Olympic women's marathon at the Los Angeles Games, easily outdistancing Norway's Grete Waitz.

  90. 1956: Middleweight champion Sugar Ray Robinson thrills a crowd of 18,000 at Wrigley Field and a national television audience with a fourth-round knockout of Bobo Olson.

  91. 1935: Three weeks after setting six world records in one afternoon, Ohio State's Jesse Owens wins four events with ease against USC before more than 40,000 at the Coliseum.

  92. 1976: Kings center Butch Goring scores in overtime to beat Boston, completing a comeback from a 3-1 deficit and sending this Stanley Cup second-round series to a seventh game.

  93. 1987: Rookie running back Bo Jackson riddles Seattle for 221 yards and three touchdowns - including a 91-yard run - on a Monday night as the Raiders end a seven-game losing streak, 37-14.

  94. 1940: Santa Anita crowd favorite Seabiscuit wins his final race with an emotional, come-from-behind effort in the Santa Anita Handicap.

  95. 1976: USC's John Naber dominates the swim competition at the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal, winning four gold and one silver medal in five days.

  96. 1989: Willie Shoemaker, already the winningest jockey of all time, wins his 1,000th Stakes race aboard Peace at Hollywood Park.

  97. 1994: East L.A.'s Oscar de la Hoya wins his first professional world title with a 10th-round TKO of Denmark's Jimmi Bredahl for the WBO Junior Lightweight crown.

  98. 1924: USC sophomore Bud Houser wins gold medals in both the shot put and discus at the Paris Olympics, the last man to accomplish the feat.

  99. 1985: Angels star Rod Carew collects his 3,000th career hit with a single against the Minnesota Twins - his original team - in the third inning of a 6-5 Angels win.

  100. 1957: L.A. Angels star first baseman Steve Bilko belts a team-record 56 home runs as the Pacific Coast League era ends in Los Angeles.

Bonus moment: 1995: Player of the Year Ed O'Bannon and guard Tyus Edney lead UCLA to its first post-Wooden national championship with 31-2 record and an 89-78 win over Arkansas.