Seven of the best sporting brawls

Following the massive brawl involving Chinese club teams Jiangsu Suning and Wuhan Hongxing, we thought we’d put together some of the best sporting brawls.

San Francisco Giants v Los Angeles Dodgers

Just to prove that brawls are almost as old as sport itself, we dug up this classic from 1965.

While the act that started the mass fight cannot be seen, apparently Giants pitcher Juan Marichal intentionally hit Dodgers catcher Johnny Roseboro on the head with the bat.

Lions 1974 Tour to South Africa

In another golden oldie, the British Lions Tour to South Africa produced many on-field punch ups.

The South Africans were known for being intimidating on the field and engaging in the odd cheap shot. To counteract this, Lions captain Willie John McBride came up with the famous ’99 call’, where upon his signal, each player would attack the closest South African with all their might.

Boston Bruins go into the stands

Ice Hockey is not known for steering away from violence and in 1979, when the Boston Bruins took on the New York Rangers, it was no different.

After a fight broke out near the tunnel, a fan reached over and punched Boston’s Stan Jonathan before stealing his stick. This moved the fight into the stands, skates and all, where the Boston Bruins players took on the New York fans.

Bench-clearing brawl in Cuba

We aren’t sure what transpired before this pitch, or perhaps the batter just had a really short fuse.

Either way, after he took one in the body, there was only one thing on the batters mind: revenge.

Maradona and the Butcher of Bilbao

In 1983, Andoni Goikoetxea – known as the ‘Butcher of Bilbao’ for his aggressive tackling technique – chopped down Diego Maradona in a tackle that left the Argentine out of the game for three months.

A year later, when Barcelona met Athletic Bilbao in the Copa del Ray final, Maradona had not forgotten. The striker kicked Goikoetxea in the head, triggering one of the football’s worst brawls.

Ron Artest takes on all of Detroit

The ‘Malice in the Palace’ is a great example of how these brawls often snowball.

Artest’s hard foul on Ben Wallace sparked the incident, as Wallace took exception by pushing him back. A Detroit fan then got involved by throwing his whole drink at Artest.

A number of other fans then jumped in on the action as the Pacers players launched themselves into the stands.

Later, a defeated Artest is dragged down the tunnel while it rained down popcorn, plastic bottles and more soft drinks.



Miami Hurricanes v Florida Panthers

This epic dust up must go down as one of the biggest of all time. With the two universities being separated by just nine miles, there was always going to be a lot of tension at the Orange Bowl.

That tension boiled over following a touchdown from Miami in the third quarter. What followed was brutal, with players using helmets as weapons as a couple of body slams. A total of 31 players were suspended following the incident.

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