Foul Ball: The Biggest Controversies in Sports

Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan

The stage was set. Fellow countrywomen and staunch rivals Nancy Kerrigan and Tonya Harding were ready to fight for world figure skating supremacy at the Winter Olympics in 1994. That is, until the unthinkable happened.

Just before the two were set to face off, Kerrigan was attacked by an unknown assailant. Using a baton, the attacker struck Kerrigan just above the kneecap effectively eliminating her from the competition. Eventually the truth was revealed. That the attacker was Harding’s ex-husband. More so, Harding and her ex-hubby orchestrated the entire thing.

Mike Tyson Bite

In a terrible parenting move a la my father, 10-year-old me watched the 1997 rematch between Holyfield and Tyson live.

The two hated each other. That much was obvious. And though many expected the altercation to be a violent affair, it wasn’t much of a fight early on. Holyfield was clearly the better boxer, and had his way with “Iron Mike” early on. Then, Mike Tyson went in for a classic one-two-chomp combo and tore a chunk of ear off of his opponent.

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It was so successful, that he did it again shortly after. The ref disqualified Tyson following the second bite and the arena (and the world) devolved into chaos.

1919 Chicago White Sox Scandal

The crest on their jersey might have said White Sox, but the 1919 team from Chicago will forever be known as the Black Sox. In the 1919 World Series, the Chicago White Sox fell to the Cincinnati Reds in an incredible upset that had many crying foul.

And rightfully so. Not long after that final pitch, information implicating the 1919 Chicago White Sox in game fixing surfaced. Eight Black Sox members were put on trial and eventually banned from baseball for life.

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