30 Professional Sports Facts That You Won’t Believe

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30 Professional Sports Facts That You Won't Believe

Sports facts
Charles LeClaire - USA TODAY Sports

Sport -- we all love it. That's presumably why you decided to read this slideshow article on 30 facts that you will most likely find interesting and possibly by shocked by!

From the popular American sports to Europe's favorite, soccer, there are tonnes of statistics and facts that fill up web pages and books. Some have come from bizarre moments in history, and others from momentous turns of fate that result in some incredible stories. Others are just little anecdotes from across the world that tell a lot about how we got to where we are today.

However, it's not just the popular sports that bring up the interesting facts. The niche ones also provide some unique little facts that, for at least a minute, make us interested. Some of these allow us to open our eyes to the way people participate in sport, but also serves to amuse us as people make mistakes, or somehow don't realize that a sport could be evolved into something better.

No matter what the fact is, the facts themselves are written pieces of information telling us about the times in the past where something happened that we all wish we could have seen ourselves. When you watch your favorite team this weekend, who knows what will happen and how long that memory will last in the sports history? Enjoy!

Stowe Gregory is an English Soccer and Sports writer for Follow him or tweet on Twitter @stowegregory. Or add to circles on Google +

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30. Commonwealth Monkeys

Commonwealth Games Delhi 2010
Image via Harrasis - Wiki Commons

To protect the 2010 Commonwealth Games from security threats and wild animals, the organizers of the Delhi games deployed all the usual security measures, as well as 38 Langur monkeys trained to protect.

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29. 10.5-second Knockout

Kamin Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Despite having passed away in 2000, Former welterweight boxer Aurele "Al" Couture has the record for the quickest recorded knockout in professional boxing. Ralph Walton was the victim in 1946 as Couture knocked him out in just 10.5 seconds.

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28. 116 Lanes

Image via Biso - Wiki Commons

The Inazawa Bowling Centre in Japan opened in 1972 and is the world's biggest bowling alley with 116 lanes.

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27. Longest MLB Game

MLB baseball
Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

On May 1, 1920, the Brooklyn Robins played Boston Braves, a game that lasted a massive 26 innings. It was a tie, and called off due to darkness.

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26. Kentucky Derby Fool

Kentucky Derby 1957
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

During the 1957 Kentucky Derby, a horse named Gallant Man was on course to take the victory in the USA's biggest horse racing event. It appeared he had the race won. But incredibly with around 110 yards to go, the jockey made a shocking mistake and believed he had already past the finishing line. He stood up, only to soon realise he was quite some way short and eventually lost the race.

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25. Jesse Owens vs. Animal

Jesse Owens racing a horse
Image via Wiki Commons

Jesse Owens is known for his domination during the 1936 Olympic Games, but he had to make a living somehow before that, and so he was paid by crowds to watch him take on horses and dogs in sprints.

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24. Michigan University's 550-0 Football Score

24. Michigan University's 550-0 Football Score
Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports

In 1901, the University of Michigan managed to clock up a total season score of 550-0 when combining all of their results. Their astonishing season saw the largest win being a 128-0 thumping over Buffalo, while the smallest win was 21-0 against Ohio State.

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23. Most Played Sport

Stew Milne - USA TODAY Sports

Fishing is the biggest participant sport in the world. Yep that's right. From local streams to oceans and giant rivers, the fact that you can take part at any age is surely the main reason.

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22. Mother Knocks Out Son

Boxing facts
Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

Steve McCarthy was an undefeated light heavyweight boxer. But on September 21 1989, things took a turn for the worse as he suffered a technical knockout ... but unexpectedly. With McCarthy on the brink of victory himself, his mother slipped under the ropes, into the ring and started smacking her son on the head with one of her own shoes. The cut that resulted on her son's head meant the referee had little option but to call a technical knockout.

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21. Chess

Image via Enochlau - Wiki

I couldn't believe it at first either, but Chess is an IOC recognized sport!

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20. Chess Moves

chess facts
Image via MichaelMagges - Wiki Commons

Chess facts probably don't sound very interesting, but there are 318,979,564,000 ways of playing the first four turns in a game of chess. There are 169,518,829,100,544,000,000,000,000,000 ways of playing the first 10 turns.

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19. Longest Televised Putt

terry wogan golf putt
Allan Henry-USA TODAY Sports

Sir Terry Wogan, a now-retired British TV and radio presenter, not a professional golfer, has the record for the longest putt caught on camera. It was an astonishing 200-foot turn of luck.

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18. Lefties

New Jersey Nets
Jim O'Connor-USA TODAY Sports

In 1977, the New Jersey Nets fielded an entire line-up of left-handed players -- an NBA first. However, they still lost the game 22-60, which happened to be the worst result that season.

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17. Soccer Player Ate a Red Card

Fernando d’Ercoli eats red card
Greg Bartram-USA TODAY Sports

Fernando d’Ercoli in 1989 was so furious that the referee had sent him off that he took the card and ate it.

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16. Why are NHL shirts white and dark?

NHL Shirts
Fred Greenslade-USA TODAY Sports

It is believed that the true reason for home NHL teams wearing white and away wearing dark is because in the 1960s, the teams decided it would be easier to keep the uniforms from looking less dirty if they were dark while they were on their travels.

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15. Moon Golf

sports on the moon
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Golf is the only sport to have been played in space. On February 6, 1971, astronaut Alan Shepard hit two golf balls while on the lunar surface.

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14. Dundee United's Impressive 100 percent Record

dundee united barcelona
Image via Benson85 - Wiki Commons

Having played the club considered the best team in the world, FC Barcelona, four times, Dundee United have a unique record of a 100 percent win percentage vs. Barca.

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13. First Ever Football Team With Insignia

Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

The first professional football team to sport an insignia on their helmets was the Los Angeles Rams in 1950, the team painted yellow horns on their helmets, which would soon catch on differently for each team.

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12. Pitched Complete Game After Being Struck by Lightning

baseball facts
Jason Foster - Wiki Commons

Somehow, Cleveland Indians pitcher Ray Caldwell recorded a complete game against the Philadelphia A's in 1919, despite being hit by lightning in the middle of the ninth inning.

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11. Pooping Your Pants Midgame

Gary Lineker poo pants
Image via @GaryLineker on Twitter

During the 1990 World Cup in Italy, England's legendary striker Gary Lineker failed to control the fact that nature was ... doing its business. He was soon attempting to deal with the matter by moving about on the grass.

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10. Not So Gold Medals

olympic gold medals
Andrew P. Scott-USA TODAY

Despite being widely presumed that they are made of gold, the 1912 Olympics was the last time that gold medals were solid gold. Ever since, they've been metal compounds with gold plating.

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9. Professional Kite Flying

kites sport
Image via Aaron Doucett - Wiki Commons

Despite being seen as a child's game in the majority of the western world, Kite flying is a professional sport in Thailand.

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8. 5,317 Free Throws Misses In An NBA Career

o'neal nba
Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

Retired NBA star Shaquille O'Neal is considered one of the greats on the NBA but when he retired in 2010, he left with 5,317 missed free throws.

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7. NFL Lineman Weight Loss

NFL Lineman
Kirby Lee - USA TODAY Sports

An NFL lineman can shed up to nine pounds of water weight during a game.

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6. The Arsene Wenger Asteroid

Arsene wenger space
Image via @Arsenal on Twitter

Frenchman Arsene Wenger, the soccer manager of English Premier League club Arsenal, has an asteroid named after him, as the man who discovered it was a Gooner (nickname for Arsenal fans). Ian P. Griffin discovered it in 1998.

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5. $600 million Golf Balls

golf facts
Allan Henry-USA TODAY Sports

Americans spend around an astonishing $600 million a year on golf balls.

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4. Crime Fighting Hernandez

Chicharito Mexico crime rate
David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Police in Mexico have stated that when Manchester United and Mexico soccer player Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez plays, the crime rate in the nation goes down significantly. But what is more bizarre is that they also believe the birth rate increases.

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3. NBA Players Go Bust

NBA Players go bust
Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

According to a study by Toronto Star in 2008, it is believed that 60 percent of retired NBA players go broke just five years after their NBA careers come to a close.

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2. 500-foot Ted Williams

biggest ever pop fly
Greg M. Cooper-USA TODAY Sports

In 1941, Boston Red Sox player Ted Williams created a record as he smashed a pop fly that rocketed more than 560 feet in the air.

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1. Basketball Without Nets

basketball facts
Crystal LoGiudice-USA TODAY Sports

Until 1906, nobody had thought of putting a hole in the bottom of the baskets for basketball. Instead, they had a tiny hole that you would poke the ball back up through. They also originally used soccer balls until a Spalding one was used that is similar to today's. But the fact nobody ever thought of putting a hole in the baskets is quite amusing.