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Is the Atlanta Falcons' loss the biggest choke in professional sports

Discussion in 'Sports Talk' started by BirraImperial, Feb 6, 2017.

  1. BirraImperial

    BirraImperial Pura Vida!

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    I think it is ... If it's not, it's probably top 3...Can only imagine the Warriors blowing up a 3-1 lead on last year's NBA finals or the Pats blowing up their perfect season back in 2007...
     
  2. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    I don't know. Who's the Falcon?
     
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  3. BirraImperial

    BirraImperial Pura Vida!

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    They just lost the Superbowl after leading by 25 points to the Patriots...
     
  4. EgonSpengler

    EgonSpengler Deity

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    Two big ones leap to my mind:
    AC Milan up 3-0 at halftime in the '05 Champions League final; Liverpool scored 3 in the 2nd half, then won on penalties.
    NY Yankees up 3 games to none in the best-of-7 '04 ALCS, then lost 4 in a row to the Red Sox (and games 4 & 5 each went extra innings).

    For fans of MMA, Matt Serra knocking out Georges St. Pierre was an all-time upset, but that's such a niche sport.
    France and Spain have each had epic meltdowns in recent World Cups ('10 and '14, respectively), but it wasn't just 1 game/contest.
    South Africa's loss to Japan in the '15 Rugby World Cup came in the group stage, and they ended up winning their group anyway.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2017
  5. Gen.Mannerheim

    Gen.Mannerheim Grand Moff

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    Not saying that the Falcons would have won, but the NFL has the WORST overtime rules in professional sports...

    Not allowing the other team's offense to even touch the ball is criminal.
     
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  6. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Deity

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    Agreed, though clearly the crime was committed by the Falcons' defense.
     
  7. schlaufuchs

    schlaufuchs La Femme Moderne

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    Indians blowing a 3-game lead.

    Other notable Baseball collapses:

    2011 Red Sox were 9 games up in first place going into the final month of the regular season. Then they went 7-20 and failed to make the playoffs
    1969 Chicago Cubs had an 8.5 game lead in mid-August, but went 8-17 in September and ended up 8 games behind the Mets for the NL East title.
    1964 Philadelphia Phillies led the by 6.5 games with 12 left to play. Went on a 10-game losing streak and ended up losing out on the NL East Title to the Cardinals.
     
  8. Light Cleric

    Light Cleric ElCee/LC/El Cid

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    I'm just a little bit biased but yes I think it was.

    Not adjusting their defense, not managing the clock properly(e.g. snapping with +10 seconds left on the play clock), going pass-happy with a 25 point lead when your RBs were gashing the defense, having the ball on the Pats' 25 for a chip-shot field goal and turning that into 4th & 33 because Matt Ryan went full potato and took a sack followed by a holding penalty....it was embarrassing and also effing delicious to watch as a Saints fan. Despite the stupid-ass "Matty Ice" nickname the Falcons had a well-earned reputation for choking(see: 2012 NFCCG) and they somehow one-upped themselves.

    Side note, I never thought I would be rooting for the Patriots in anything, I felt like I was rooting for Satan
     
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  9. Serutan

    Serutan Eatibus Anythingibus

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    It isn't even the worst in the NFL. That would be the Oilers blowing a 35-3 3rd quarter lead in the 1993(?) playoffs.
    Brady doubtless hates taking a back seat to Frank Reich.
     
  10. Timsup2nothin

    Timsup2nothin Deity

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    I never thought I would be rooting for the Patriots in anything. They didn't play the Cowboys so that has not been fully proven, but so far I am right.
     
  11. vivalamexico

    vivalamexico Prince

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    That's a funny way of spelling Kyle Shanahan
     
  12. Light Cleric

    Light Cleric ElCee/LC/El Cid

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    Yeah I should have been more clear, the VAST majority of the blame belongs on the coaching staff and Shanahan. The defense did far more than they needed to in order to win, and their problems in the 4th were Quinn's inability to mix things up, and in that sense the defense did fail, but it wasn't the players' fault. The defense was also gassed from Shanahan being up 25 with 9 minutes left and only calling 4 running plays which put them back on the field so much. I don't remember the exact number but I know the Falcons' D was on the field for at least 90 snaps. That's a LOT especially against an offense that can score in a hurry.
     
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  13. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    I've never seen a Super Bowl choke as big as this. But as a (possibly arrogant) Seahawk fan I'm going to have to bring up Seattle vs Green Bay NFC championship game 2014. It isn't *more* of a choke than this, but it's within the discussion.
     
  14. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    But regarding this Super Bowl, you all may find this to be informative and enjoyable.
     
  15. warpus

    warpus In pork I trust

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    I nominate the semi-final encounter at the Estádio Mineirão at the 2014 FIFA World Cup between Germany and Brazil.

    The setup: The Brazilians, hosting the World Cup for the second time, unbeaten at home since 1975, heading into the semi-final with confidence.
    The aftermath: Germany makes the Brazilian team look like a bunch of fools, wins 7-1

    To help put this game in its proper sports history context, I turn to wikipedia:

    A couple of the goals came one after the other. Here are some highlights:

     
  16. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    I would tend to agree. But the problem is, that's not what we mean by 'choke'. By your definition of 'choke' the Seahawks blowing out the Broncos 43-8 should also count.

    edit: And that Seahawk/Broncos game was so ridiculous it always provides me with laughter and good times. First play of the game is a safety? Hollywood couldn't make that up. Especially after the hero worship Peyton Manning (as well as the entire Broncos offense) was getting. The only thing the Broncos even remotely got right was stopping Marshawn Lynch, and that isn't enough when you don't stop anything else, on both sides of the ball. And personally as a Seahawk fan, I use that game as masturbation material.

    Choke in this instance means a team has a huge lead, and manages to ruin it.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2017
  17. warpus

    warpus In pork I trust

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    Ruining a 40 year old home unbreaten streak by losing 7-1 and letting in 4 goals in 6 minutes should definitely count, IMO. If you ask any Brazilian soccer fan they will probably tell you that they felt that their team "choked" that day
     
  18. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    Brazil also got creamed by the Netherlands in their next match, and the Netherlands weren't nearly as good as Germany.

    Brazil did not belong in the semi-finals in the first place. They only got there from a bunch of blatant controversial calls in their favor. For Brazil to get knocked out early in the tournament would cost FIFA huge profits. Not to mention political unrest, which was already there in the first place. With the absurd stadiums build at the expense of the Brazilian taxpayer being only one of which.

    Brazil just sucked that year. And Germany was top dog. Not exactly what I'd call 'choke'.
     
  19. Arwon

    Arwon

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    Choke has two meanings, one is losing when expected pregame to win easily and the other is losing from a significant ingame lead.

    For the ingame leads being blown I nominate Clijsters going down to Serena Williams at an Australian Open semi in 03, after having a 5-1 lead and two match points in the second set.

    I don't think anything in team sport can match the purity of a tennis choke from the very moment of triumph.

    Edit: in a similar vein, Greg Norman going into the final day of the US Masters with a 6 stroke lead and losing by 5 strokes is a similar bit of pure individual capitulation. I'd put those ahead of anything team sport can offer.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2017
  20. caketastydelish

    caketastydelish Deity

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    Well yes. The difference being nowhere near 50% of Americans were watching that. You could say this Falcons/Patriots game was the biggest choke in significant professional sports history. There were definitely plenty of bigger chokes.
     

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