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Gibson’s Homer Chosen as L.A.'s Finest Moment

TIMES SPORTS EDITOR

The greatest moment in Los Angeles sports history turned out to be one swing of the bat by a barely ambulatory Dodger.

It happened in 1988 in Game One of the World Series, when Kirk Gibson hobbled out of the training room, hobbled to the plate and hobbled around the bases after hitting an unthinkable home run that led the Dodgers to the championship over the Oakland A’s.

Gibson’s moment was immortalized Sunday night at Pauley Pavilion before a sellout black-tie crowd of 1,000 and the Prime Sports television network. The event was the culmination of a year’s planning by David Simon, the Los Angeles Sports Council and Richard Perelman, who authored a book documenting the 100 greatest moments.

Perelman compiled the list with the help and votes of media members, sports officials of all the area teams, school officials and the L.A. Athletic Club.

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The rest of the top 12:

2) The 1984 Olympic Games; 3) USC’s 55-24 victory against Notre Dame in 1974; 4) John Wooden’s 10th NCAA basketball title; 5) USC’s 21-20 victory over UCLA in 1967; 6) The Lakers’ 1980 NBA title; 7) Sandy Koufax’s perfect game in 1965; 8) The 1932 Olympics; 9) The Raiders’ 1984 Super Bowl victory; 10) The Dodgers’ move to Los Angeles in 1958; 11) The 1985 Lakers’ NBA title against the Celtics; 12) The Kings making the Stanley Cup finals in 1993.

Gibson, now retired, took the stage with Vin Scully and Dodger Manager Tom Lasorda. Scully told Gibson, “The facts were simple that night, you couldn’t walk.”

Gibson replied, “I spent the entire game in the training room listening to an announcer [Scully] say 100 times over and over again that I couldn’t do it.”

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Scully: “That then becomes a major contribution of my career.”

Lasorda chimed in, “When Gibson hit that ball, it went right where I told him to.”

But Dodger owner Peter O’Malley had the best line of the night that only a few heard. As Gibson was about to leave to head to the stage, O’Malley turned to him and asked, “Are you going to limp?”


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