Professional Sports 1951
Behind 4 to 1 In the bottom of the 9th in the last playoff game against the Brooklyn Dodgers, New York Giant Bobby Thompson hit a grand slam home run which became the most famous moment in baseball called The shot Heard Round the world.
World Series – New York Yankees win 4 games to 2 over the New York Giants. Known as the The Season of Change with the introduction of Willie Mays and Mickey Mantle and the last game played by Joe DiMaggio. World Series Almanac 1951
New York Yankee Joe DiMaggio known as The Yankee Clipper announced his retirement in December 1951. He had been awarded the MVP 3 times appeared in 13 All-Star games (in every season he played) and still holds the record for his 56 game hitting streak in 1941. Where did you go Joe DiMaggio
Willie Mays begins his career playing for New York Giants. Though off to a slow start at the beginning of the season, he became rookie of the year and went on to play in the 1951 World Series against the New York Yankees. Willie Mays
Chuck Conners made famous as The Rifleman TV series played 61 games for the Chicago Cubs in 1951. He also played for the NBA Boston Celtics. He was the first player to oppose the major league draft. Chuck Conners baseball player
NFL Championship – Los Angeles Rams won 24–17 over the Cleveland Browns
Los Angeles Rams Norm Van Brocklin sets NFL single game record for most passing yards (554) helping the Los Angeles Rams beat the New York Yanks 48–21. Norm Van Brocklin record still stands.
The NFL Pro Bowl is re instituted after a hiatus from 1942 with the American division beating the Nationals 28-27
Chuck Cooper and Coach Red Auerbach
Chuck Cooper became the first black player to play in an NBA game after he was drafted by the Boston Celtics.; Chuck Cooper.
1st NBA All-Star Game: East beats West 111-94 at Boston
NBA Finals – Rochester Royals won 4 games to 3 over the New York Knicks
Athletes of the Year 1951
Toronto Maple Leafs player Bill Barilko went missing in a suspected plane crash on a Canadian fishing trip. The wreckage and his body were not found until 11 years later. Bill Barilko.
Art Ross Memorial Trophy as the NHL's leading scorer during the regular season: Gordie Howe, Detroit Red Wings
Hart Memorial Trophy – for the NHL's Most Valuable Player: Milt Schmidt, Boston Bruins
Stanley Cup – Toronto Maple Leafs win 4 games to 1 over the Montreal Canadiens
World Hockey Championship: Canada's Lethbridge Maple Leafs
Randy Turpin and English Boxer known as the Leamington Larruper beat Sugar Ray Robinson in June 1951 to win the World Middleweight title. He was big news until he lost to Robinson at the New York Polo Grounds in September. Randy Turpin
Masters Tournament – Ben Hogan
Women's Western Open – Patty Berg
1951 Tennis Grand Slam
Australian Open – Dick Savitt
Australian Open – Nancye Wynne Bolton
Davis Cup – Australia wins 3–2 over the United States in world tennis.
Kentucky Derby – Count Turf
College Sports 1951
1951 Heisman Trophy - Dick Kazmaier, Princeton HB
1951 college football champions - Maryland Terrapins
NCAA Men's Basketball Championship – Kentucky wins 68–58 over Kansas State University.