On This Day

December 1989 in Sports History

Events in Sport

  • Dec 1 Romanian 5-time Olympic gold medal winning gymnast Nadia Comăneci arrives in NYC requesting political asylum to the United States; granted
  • Dec 2 55th Heisman Trophy Award: Andre Ware, Houston (QB)
  • Dec 2 54th Iron Bowl: Auburn beats Alabama 30-20 in Auburn

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 3 Stefan Edberg of Sweden claims his first and only ATP Masters Grand Prix tennis title with a 4–6, 7–6, 6–3, 6–1 win over defending champion Boris Becker at Madison Square Garden, NYC

Tennis Legend Boris Becker
Tennis Legend
Boris Becker
  • Dec 11 Mark Davis signs record $3.25 million per year KC Royals contract
  • Dec 13 Walter Davis (Denver) ends NBA free throw streak of 53 games
  • Dec 16 Commencement of 1st Test Cricket play at Bellerive Oval, Hobart (v SL)
  • Dec 17 78th Davis Cup: Germany beats Sweden in Stuttgart (3-2)
  • Dec 17 Michael Bevan scores cricket century on 1st-class debut (114 SA v WA)

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 19 Larry Bird (Celtics) begins NBA free throw streak of 71 games

NBA Legend Larry Bird
NBA Legend
Larry Bird

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 26 ODI cricket debut for Australia's Mark Taylor and Sri Lanka's Sanath Jayasuriya at the MCG

  • Dec 27 Oregon begins taking bids on NBA games

Event of interestEvent of Interest

Dec 29 Wayne Gretzky and Martina Navratilova, named athletes of decade by the Associated Press

Ice Hockey Great Wayne Gretzky
Ice Hockey Great
Wayne Gretzky
Tennis Player Martina Navratilova
Tennis Player
Martina Navratilova
  • Dec 30 Dmitri Volkov swims world record 50m freestyle (27.15 sec)
  • Dec 31 Jockey Kent Desormeaux sets record with 598 wins in a year

Birthdays in Sport

  • Dec 2 Matteo Darmian, Italian soccer full-back (36 caps; Torino, Manchester United), born in Legnano, Milan, Italy
  • Dec 4 Pornanong Phatlum, Thai golfer (British Open 2018 runner-up), born in Khon Kaen, Thailand
  • Dec 7 Kyle Hendricks, American MLB pitcher (Chicago Cubs), born in Newport Beach, California
  • Dec 8 Drew Doughty, Canadian hockey player, born in London, Canada
  • Dec 21 Mark Ingram Jr., American football running back (Heisman Trophy 2009, U of Alabama; NFL Pro Bowl 2014, 17, 19; New Orleans Saints, Baltimore Ravens), born in Hackensack, New Jersey
  • Dec 29 Nathan Forbes, English football player, born in Sheffield, United Kingdom
  • Dec 29 Kei Nishikori, Japanese tennis player (11 singles titles, only Japanese player ranked in top 10), born in Matsue, Japan
  • Dec 30 Ryan Sheckler, American professional skateboarder

Deaths in Sport

  • Dec 3 Fernando Martín, Spanish basketball center (first Spaniard in NBA 1986, Portland Trail Blazers; FIBA Club World Cup 1981, Real Madrid), dies in a car accident at 27
  • Dec 16 Oscar Alfredo Gálvez, Argentine racing driver (b. 1913)

Person of interestBilly Martin

Dec 25 Billy Martin, American baseball 2nd baseman (MLB All Star 1956; World Series 1951, 52, 53, 56; NY Yankees) and manager (World Series 1977 NY Yankees), killed in a car accident at 61

Baseball Player and Manager Billy Martin
Baseball Player and Manager
Billy Martin

Person of interestDoug Harvey

Dec 26 Doug Harvey, Canadian ice hockey defence player ('100 Greatest NHL Players), dies of cirrhosis of the liver at 65

NHL Legend Doug Harvey
NHL Legend
Doug Harvey