A bracket of 16 well-known comebacks in Boston sports history. Bracket created by Liz Lovasco
Across the decades of Boston sports, fans have had the joy of experiencing much more than a handful of dramatic comebacks.
In some circumstances — such as the Red Sox rally from a three- deficit in the 2004 American League Championship Series — it became a bigger-than-life moment, echoing via history. In other folks, the comebacks had been just as astounding in the moment — and arguably perhaps even much more impressive in feat — but maybe with decrease stakes.
However when fans feel back on the region’s wealthy sports history, one particular of the eternal subjects for debate inevitably ends up becoming which Boston comeback is the greatest.
This year, Boston.com will attempt to present its personal answer to that query with a March Madness-style bracket. Readers will be in a position to vote on person match-ups, representing 16 of the region’s greatest sports comebacks, till a champion is crowned.
Here’s a schedule for the upcoming rounds of the bracket:
- Initial round: March 12 (1 p.m.) via March 14 (12:59 p.m.)
- Second round: March 14 (1 p.m.) via March 16 (12:59 p.m.)
- Final 4: March 16 (1 p.m.) via March 18 (12:59 p.m.)
- Championship: March 18 (1 p.m.) via March 20 (12:59 p.m.)
And with that, let’s get to the voting in the 2023 bracket:
No. 1. Super Bowl LI: Patriots’ rally from 28-three vs. No. 16. Boston College-Miami 1984 “Hail Flutie”
Super Bowl LI: Patriots’ rally from 28-three: Super Bowl LI remains one particular of the iconic moments in NFL history. Tom Brady and the Patriots rallied from a 28-three deficit to defeat the Atlanta Falcons in the greatest comeback the Super Bowl has ever observed.
Boston College-Miami 1984 “Hail Flutie”: The signature moment of Doug Flutie’s Heisman Trophy-winning season came on a miraculous final-second 48-yard touchdown pass to wide receiver Gerard Phelan. It cemented Boston College’s improbable 47-45 win more than Miami, and Flutie’s legacy amongst New England sports legends.
No. eight Red Sox 2007 “Mother’s Day Miracle” vs. No. 9 Red Sox-Tigers 2013 ALCS Game two
Tigers outfielder Torii Hunter disappears into the Red Sox bullpen right after his failed work to catch David Ortiz’s ALCS Game two grand slam. – Stan Grossfeld/Globe Employees
Red Sox 2007 “Mother’s Day Miracle”: The 2007 Red Sox discovered themselves in dire straits, trailing the Orioles five- in the bottom of the 9th. Thanks to a mixture of 4 hits and two Baltimore errors, the group was in a position to bounce back and stroll it off on Mother’s Day.
Red Sox-Tigers 2013 ALCS Game two: Just after losing Game 1 to the Tigers, the Red Sox trailed Detroit five-1 heading into the bottom of the 8th in Game two. The game — and the series — turned on David Ortiz’s iconic game-tying grand slam. Jarrod Saltalamacchia’s base hit plated the stroll-off run one particular inning later, assisting to vault Boston towards an additional title.
No. four Celtics-Lakers 2008 NBA Finals Game four vs. No. 13 Red Sox-Reds 1975 Planet Series Game six
Celtics-Lakers 2008 NBA Finals Game four: The Celtics entered the game with a two-1 series lead but struggled out of the gate against the Lakers. Boston fought back and overcame a 24-point deficit to take a three-1 series lead and at some point capture its 16th championship.
Red Sox-Reds 1975 Planet Series Game six: Needing a win at Fenway Park to maintain the Planet Series going and keep away from defeat to Cincinnati’s “Big Red Machine,” the Red Sox fell behind six-three heading into the bottom of the 8th. Bernie Carbo came via with an improbable pinch-hit 3-run household run with two outs to tie the game up, and Carlton Fisk’s 12th inning stroll-off — which he waved fair as the ball struck the foul pole — stands as one particular of the terrific moments in baseball history.
No. five Celtics-Nets 2002 ECF Game three vs. No. 12 Patriots-Raiders 2002 “Snow Bowl”
Adam Vinatieri and the Patriots preparing for an iconic field purpose in the snow. – Jim Davis/Globe Employees
Celtics-Nets 2002 ECF Game three: Getting into the fourth quarter down 21 points, the Celtics scored 41 more than the final 12 minutes — 19 coming from Paul Pierce — to pull off an remarkable comeback against the Nets.
Patriots-Raiders 2002 “Snow Bowl”: In one particular of the foundational moments of the Patriots’ dynasty, Tom Brady orchestrated a fourth quarter comeback against the Raiders amid a snowstorm in the final game ever played at Foxboro Stadium. Adam Vinatieri’s clutch field ambitions tied and then won the game as the Patriots’ championship run got underway.
No. two Red Sox 2004 ALCS comeback from three- vs. No. 15 Red Sox-Senators 1961
Dave Roberts steals second ahead of Derek Jeter’s tag in one particular of the famously pivotal moments of the Red Sox 2004 ALCS comeback. – Stan Grossfeld/Globe Employees
Red Sox 2004 ALCS comeback from three-: Boston completed the only comeback from a three- series deficit in MLB history when they won 4 straight against the Yankees. Fighting not only a stacked New York roster but also the weight of history, the Red Sox overcame the odds in memorable style.
Red Sox-Senators 1961: Although it may not be the most memorable game, it is arguably the most improbable comeback in the bracket. Trailing the Washington Senators 12-five with two outs in the 9th in a common season game in June of 1961, the Red Sox scored eight runs to emerge with a seemingly not possible 13-12 win.
No. 7 Patriots-Broncos 2013 vs. No. ten BU men’s hockey 2009 National Championship
Patriots-Broncos 2013: The Patriots trailed Peyton Manning and the Broncos 24- at halftime of a windy November common season game right after providing the ball away 3 instances. 4 forced turnovers in the second half and a Stephen Gostkowski field purpose in overtime permitted them to total the unbelievable 34-31 comeback.
BU men’s hockey 2009 National Championship: Boston University men’s hockey capped an remarkable season by rallying from a three-1 deficit with just 59.five seconds remaining against Miami University in the national championship. The Terriers won it in overtime to total the four-three turnaround.
No. three Bruins-Maple Leafs 2013 ECQF Game 7 vs. No. 14 Revolution-MetroStars 2005 ECSF
The fans go wild as Zdeno Chara hugs Patrice Bergeron right after Bergeron scored the game winner against the Maple Leafs in overtime of Game 7. – Jim Davis/Globe Employees
Bruins-Maple Leafs 2013 ECQF Game 7: Trailing four-1 with only minutes to go in the deciding game of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals, the Bruins stormed back with a dramatic burst of ambitions to force overtime. Patrice Bergeron went on to score the game and series-winner, leaving the Maple Leafs stunned.
Revolution-MetroStars 2005 ECSF: Facing each a regional snowstorm and playoff elimination, the Revolution trailed two- on aggregate to the MetroStars in the second half of the Eastern Conference Semifinals. But just as the season appeared to be slipping away, New England discovered a trio of ambitions to provide an improbable win.
No. six Red Sox-Rays 2008 ALCS Game five vs. No. 11 Red Sox-Angels 1986 ALCS Game five
Red Sox-Rays 2008 ALCS Game five: Staring at elimination and a seven-run deficit against the Rays, the Red Sox scored eight runs in the final 3 innings, the final of which came on a stroll-off single by J.D. Drew to make the series three-two.
Red Sox-Angels 1986 ALCS Game five: Trailing each in the game (five-two) and the series (three-1), the Red Sox necessary a miracle to keep away from elimination in the 9th inning of Game five. Don Baylor and pinch-hitter Dave Henderson delivered, hitting a pair of clutch household runs (with an additional Henderson household run in the 11th inning at some point delivering the distinction in a season-saving 7-six win).