Fans watch sports for all sorts of reasons. Some watch for the beauty of the game. Others watch just to follow their favorite athlete or hometown team. But some sports fans just want to see athletes rip each other’s heads off. If that sounds like you, you’ll enjoy what comes next. Here are the five wildest in-game brawls in sports history.
Jose Bautista vs. Rougned Odor
The fight between Jose Bautista and Rougned Odor sneaks into the list for one reason and one reason only. Odor’s punch to Bautista’s left jaw is one of the nastiest punches caught on camera during a live sporting event.
The slow-motion replay of the punch is nothing short of magical. It didn’t just knock Bautista off balance. It sent both his helmet and sunglasses flying off his face. The speed and sheer power needed to do that is incredible, but Odor’s hatred toward Bautista clearly gave him some extra juice.
The two had beef before this incident, but Bautista’s dirty slide into Odor’s leg that day pushed their rivalry over the edge. The benches cleared and mini fights broke out amongst the two teams, but Odor’s clean sock to the face stands out as the memorable clip.
Robin Ventura charges Nolan Ryan
A certified classic. No one has ever been more embarrassed charging the mound than Robin Ventura in 1993. Usually, the charger at least gets the first shot at the pitcher, but that wasn’t the case here.
Ventura fired out of a cannon after getting plunked by a pitch with one thing in mind: revenge. Instead, all he got was a ferocious headlock and five swift punches to the head. Ryan finished him off with one last shot to the face before the mob broke them up.
The most impressive part of that fight? Ventura was a spry 26-year-old. Nolan Ryan was 46!
Amir Garrett tries to fight the entire Pittsburgh Pirates roster
Boy, was this a mess. What should have been a boring, blowout win for the Pirates that day turned into a heated brawl fueled by pure hatred. Amir Garrett and Yasiel Puig clearly despise the Pirates, and their emotions boiled over during a regular season game last year.
Tensions were building the entire game, with pitchers throwing at batters and smack talk coming nonstop from both benches. In the top of the ninth inning, someone finally snapped. Garrett had enough of the chirping coming from the Pirates dugout, so he bolted off the mound and attempted to fight the entire city of Pittsburgh.
Puig stepped in to throw a few punches, while Reds manager David Bell went after Pirates skipper Clint Hurdle. The melee lasted several minutes. It was a miracle no one got hurt, but there were suspensions and fines galore.
The “Shoe Brawl” after a Bruins-Rangers game
Sports fans remember the “Malice at the Palace” as the iconic brawl that escalated into the stands, but the “Shoe Brawl” did the same 25 years earlier.
In 1979, the ending between a Boston Bruins and New York Rangers game got so heated that fans started throwing objects at players on the ice. The fans probably thought they were safe behind the glass, but they were dead wrong.
A horde of Bruins jumped over the glass and started fighting Rangers fans in the seats. One player even ripped the shoe off someone’s foot and started beating him with it. Hence, the melee came to be known as the “Shoe Brawl.”
Malice at the Palace
No surprises here. When you think of sports brawls, the “Malice at the Palace” is the first one that pops into most fans’ minds immediately.
The iconic fight had everything you could ask for in a brawl. A hard foul, two teams that genuinely hate each other, multiple mini fights, fans throwing food and drinks on players, and of course, Ron Artest. The visual of Artest leaping into the stands to fight a Detroit Pistons fan is etched into NBA fighting history forever.
Describing the brawl itself would be disrespectful to its greatness. If you’ve never seen the “Malice at the Palace” before, just watch and enjoy.