As sporting events happen throughout the year, there are always events that happen while school is not in session. Most of the time, these events are fairly innocuous, such as the daily baseball games of the Major League Baseball regular season. However, there are events that are major, and as such deserve special recognition.
June was a special month, as American Pharoah became the first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978, and only the twelfth Triple Crown winner in horse racing history.
American Pharoah has competed in two more races since then, with the expectation of retiring to stud at the end of the year. Experts agree that the stud rights will be highly expensive, with CNN.com reporting the fees could reach up to $100,000 per foal.
Continuing in the month of June, the NHL season wrapped up with a six game Stanley Cup final, where the Tampa Bay Lightning lost to the Chicago Blackhawks.
The Lightning finished a remarkable season, beating the New York Rangers in seven games to win their first Eastern Conference title since 2004.
Unfortunately, they could not completely replicate the 2004 season, in which they won their only Stanley Cup.
Women were represented well during the summer as well. The United States Women’s National Soccer team capped off an exciting run in the Women’s World Cup with a resounding 5-2 victory against Japan in the final.
This was not just exciting for the nation, but a good showing as to how the respect for women’s sports has grown in this country.
Variety.com reported that an estimated 25.4 million viewers tuned in to the July 5 game, topping game six of this year’s NBA finals. It is also more viewers than any NBA game since 2010, and any MLB game since the 2004 World Series.
Ronda Rousey is also providing a positive female sports icon.
In her Aug. 1 bout against Bethe Correia, the main event of UFC 190, Rousey dominated, earning a knock-out victory in 34 seconds.
UFC 190 also shows how women are making progress, as Rousey-Correia not only main evented, but the show is expected to make it past the vaunted 1 million buy rate for pay-per-view events.
Considering UFC pay-per-views cost $49.99 for standard definition and $59.99 for high definition, 1 million pay-per-view buys displays the marketability for women in sports.
The world of tennis had exciting tournaments at Wimbledon this summer too.
Novak Djokovic won his third Wimbledon Men’s title, defeating Roger Federer in four sets, while Serena Williams claimed the Women’s title this year.
This was Williams’ sixth Wimbledon title, and it was her fourth consecutive major championship, dating back to the US Open 2014.
If Williams wins this year’s US Open, she will become only the 20th person or team to complete the Grand Slam, and only the fourth to complete it in women’s singles play. Also, if Williams pulls off the win, it would be her 22nd major victory, matching tennis legend Steffi Graf for most career major titles.