1. Patriots win Super Bowl XLIX - February 1 6.Red Sox fire Ben Cherington, hire Dave Dombrowski- August 19 Though Ben Cherington seems to have nailed a few draft picks, he swung and missed on a number of big free agent signings, most recently with Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez (as well as the Rick Porcello extension) and failed to build a pitching staff. With the team on its way to another losing season, Cherington was stripped of his power by Red Sox ownership and then stepped down. Dave Dombrowski took over as President of Baseball Operations. It was a monumental shift at the top.
The Patriots had been written off by the "experts" in the regular season. But then they made the playoffs, messed with the Ravens, dominated the Colts, blocked out the "Deflategate" nonsense for two weeks, and proceeded to beat the Seahawks in dramatic fashion. It was the first Super Bowl for the team in 10 years, and boy did it feel good. "Malcolm, go!" will live on forever.
2. Brady is free! - September 3
Roger Goodell upheld Tom Brady's four-game suspension, so Team Brady took him and the NFL to court. That's when a federal judge, U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman, ruled in favor of Brady and erased his four-game suspension just days before the regular season began. Brady's been on a roll since - and Berman can expect free meals from Connecticut to Maine for life.
3. NFL slams the Patriots for Deflategate - May 11
After Ted Wells' lengthy (and ridiculous) investigation into the possibility of the Patriots purposely using underinflated footballs, Roger Goodell and the NFL came down hard on them and Tom Brady after concluding that it was "more probable than not" the Pats violated rules. They were hit with a $1 million fine, loss of a 1st and 4th round pick, and a four-game suspension for Brady. Oh, it's on.
4. Red Sox sign David Price - December 1
You wanted an ace? You got an ace. After finishing dead last in the AL East for the third time in four years (though there was a World Series mixed in…), the Red Sox went all in on a top-of-the-line starter by signing David Price to a seven-year, $217 million contract. Price hasn't had much success in the postseason over his career, but quipped he was saving it for the Sox. We shall see.
5. David Ortiz hits No. 500 - September 12
In what everybody would consider a disappointing season for the Boston Red Sox, there was one lone bright spot one mid-September night when David Ortiz blasted No. 499 and No. 500 off Tampa Bay Rays starter Matt Moore. Ortiz had another spectacular season for the Sox, finishing with a .273 average, 37 home runs, and 108 RBI. He announced after the season that he will retire after the 2016 season. That's a guy who will be greatly missed.
7. Bruins trade Milan Lucic and Dougie Hamilton - June 26
In a matter of hours, the Bruins greatly changed the makeup of their team, trading two core players in separate trades. Lucic, a big part of the B's success over the years, was traded to the L.A. Kings for a first-rounder, Colin Miller and Martin Jones (who the B's later traded to the Sharks for a first-rounder and prospect). Hamilton, the promising young D-man, was sent to Calgary for a first-rounder and two second-rounders.
8. Red Sox retire Pedro Martinez's number - July 28
Pedro Martinez on the mound was appointment viewing for Red Sox fans back in the late 90's and early 2000's. You planned your whole day around his outings - and for good reason. Martinez is an all-time great, and after being inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame over the summer was honored by the Sox when they retired his No. 45. It was, as he called it, "Pedro's Parade."
9. Darrelle Revis signs with Jets - March 10
Not much more than a month after helping the Patriots win Super Bowl XLIX, Darrelle Revis signed a five-year, $70 million deal with the New York Jets - too rich for the Patriots' blood. This was seen as a huge hit to New England's hopes of repeating as Super Bowl champs. Little did we know just how good Malcolm Butler and Logan Ryan would be. Check that, "Pro Bowler" Malcolm Butler.
10. Celtics trade for Isaiah Thomas - February 19
It looked as if the trade deadline had come and gone without the Celtics making a move. Then word came out that Danny Ainge traded Marcus Thornton and a first-round pick to the Suns for Isaiah Thomas. The trade was a major win for the Celtics, who made an improbable run to the playoffs - though they were swept by the Cavs in the first round.
1. Patriots win Super Bowl XLIX - February 1
6.Red Sox fire Ben Cherington, hire Dave Dombrowski- August 19
Though Ben Cherington seems to have nailed a few draft picks, he swung and missed on a number of big free agent signings, most recently with Pablo Sandoval and Hanley Ramirez (as well as the Rick Porcello extension) and failed to build a pitching staff. With the team on its way to another losing season, Cherington was stripped of his power by Red Sox ownership and then stepped down. Dave Dombrowski took over as President of Baseball Operations. It was a monumental shift at the top.