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This Week in Pittsburgh Sports History

A look back at events that you’ve either forgotten about or never heard of in the first place

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Mario Lemieux poses with fans during the Penguins’ 2017 Stanley Cup victory parade in Downtown Pittsburgh. - CP PHOTO BY JORDAN MILLER
  • CP photo by Jordan Miller
  • Mario Lemieux poses with fans during the Penguins’ 2017 Stanley Cup victory parade in Downtown Pittsburgh.

June 22, 1908

The Pittsburgh Pirates’ Honus Wagner notches his 2,000th hit at Exposition Park, against Cincinnati.

June 22, 1984

After losing a reported $10 million in their first and only season, the Pittsburgh Maulers play their last game in the USFL, shuttering the franchise thereafter.

June 23, 1919

In a rematch two years in the making, welterweight fighter “The Pittsburgh Windmill” Harry Greb earns a 10-round “newspaper decision” over opponent Mike Gibbons. A newspaper decision occurred if a fight was ruled a “no decision.” The sportswriters in attendance would come to a consensus on a winner and print the decision in their papers the next day.

June 23, 2004

President George W. Bush gives the Presidential Medal of Freedom to Latrobe-based golfer Arnold Palmer. “For all who love the game of golf, and for those who love to see it played, there has never been a sight in the game quite like Arnold Palmer walking down the fairway toward the 18th green,” Bush said at the ceremony.

June 24, 1933

Just two months past his 21st birthday, in a game against the Dodgers, Pirates shortstop Arky Vaughan becomes the youngest player to hit for the cycle.

June 24, 1999

Just two years after he retires as a player, Mario Lemieux’s plan to buy the Pittsburgh Penguins out of bankruptcy is approved by a U.S. District Court judge. When he returns to the ice, in 2000, he becomes the first player-owner in NHL history.

June 27, 1967

The Odd Couple, starring Walter Matthau and Jack Lemmon, films a scene for the movie prior to a Pirates-Mets game in New York’s Shea Stadium. The script called for Pirates star Roberto Clemente to hit into a triple play. However, Clemente refused, calling it unbelievable. Bill Mazeroski does it instead.


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