Mark Barroca’s game-winner wasn’t even the wildest thing that went down in Game 5 of the 2019 PBA Philippine Cup Finals.
Minutes before the Magnolia Hotshots guard’s heroics gave his team a 3-2 series lead, a man dressed as Spider-Man ran into the Smart Araneta Coliseum court while the game was still going on. He bumped into San Miguel Beermen center June Mar Fajardo and took down the five-time MVP before security personnel collared him.
“Gusto ko lang po mag-send ng message kasi election po kasi,” he told SPIN.ph. “Gusto ko lang po magmahalan tayo. Gusto ko lang po magmahalan tayo, ’yun lang, wala nang iba po.”
The man, who was holding a placard that read, “Vote Love, Love PBA, Love Philippines,” also refuted claims he wanted to hurt Fajardo.
He was then taken to a nearby police station for inquiry, while two other men involved in the commotion were brought to the security office.
Local sports personalities expressed their thoughts about the crazy sequence, which also caught the attention of a couple of NBA stars.
Such incidents may be rare in the Philippines, but streaking in sports is actually fairly common during international sporting events. Unlike our friendly neighborhood provocateur, though, his foreign counterparts usually preferred to do their deed bare naked, often facing hefty fines and lifetime bans when foiled.
Below are 10 of the most jaw-dropping cases of momentum-breakers in sports history.
Michael O’Brien (1974)
You could call O’Brien the Father of Sports Streaking. The Australian stockbroker, who usually did his thing during major sports events, was dared to disrobe and dash onto the field during a rugby match between England and France at Twickenham. The police officer covering O’Brien’s private part with his helmet produced the iconic photo above.
‘Miss Cyndi’ (1974)
During a hockey game between the Los Angeles Kings and Pittsburgh Penguins, an unnamed stripper holding a Kings pennant ran onto the ice clad only in a Kings hat and white figure skates. It was later found that Kings owner Jack Kent Cooke agreed to pay Miss Cyndi $100 for the stunt, which saw security stumble on the ice while chasing her.
Bruce McCauley (1977)
A merchant navy cook by the name of Michael Angelow actually introduced streaking to the world of cricket at Lord’s in 1975. But it was McCauley who took the brunt of the punishment two years later. During a Test against New Zealand, Australian player Gregg Chappell grabbed the nude nuisance and repeatedly hit him on the backside with the cricket bat.
Melissa Johnson (1996)
Richard Kraijek (Netherlands) and Malivai Washington (USA) were in hot contention during the men’s singles final at Wimbledon when Johnson decided to bare it all and make a break for it on the lawn. Both players didn’t seem to mind the adventurous 23-year-old at the time, though, judging by the amused look on their faces:
Yvonne Robb (1999)
During the 128th Open Championship, Robb raced onto the green to hug Tiger Woods and give him a peck, in front of a 100-million audience. The lap dancer, who was fined £100, also did a celebratory dance before leaving.
At the 2000 British Open, another exotic dancer crashed the course after Woods had just teed off. Jacqui Salmond danced around the 18th flag, which, according to the great golfer, ruined his chances during the championship-winning round. Unfortunately, this won’t be the last time lap dancers would get him in trouble.
Mark Roberts (2004)
Roberts is somewhat of a professional streaker, judging by the more than 500 stunts he had pulled off. But one of his most infamous streaks has to be during Super Bowl XXXVIII, where he was tackled by New England Patriots linebacker Matt Chatham. Apparently, he was offered a million dollars to do the naked rush. Roberts’ deed would shortly be overshadowed by Janet Jackson’s own daring, albeit accidental, display on the same day.
James Blair (2013)
Midway through LeBron James’ NBA stint with the Miami Heat, an Ohio native stormed the court during a Cleveland Cavalier home game. Blair, who was wearing a shirt that said, “We miss you, 2014 come back,” was quickly apprehended, but not before LeBron recognized him personally with a handshake and pat on the head and later acknowledged him on Twitter. Blair was slapped with a lifetime ban from the Quicken Loans Arena, but it was lifted when LeBron indeed returned to Cleveland.
Dylan Masone (2013)
Sometimes, a sports streak doesn’t even have to come with a monetary reward to be carried out. Having just graduated from high school, Masone wrote on Twitter, “1000 retweets and I’ll run across the field.” Social media cheered him on until he pulled it off during the MLB All-Star Game —but the same cannot be said about security, his girlfriend, and mom.
Vitaly Zdorovetskiy (2014)
When he’s not pulling pranks, the Russian-American comedian likes to disturb championship series, such as the 2016 NBA Finals (with “Trump Sucks” painted on his chest) and 2017 World Series (donned in American flag-themed underwear). His first exploit happened three years ago, when he invaded the pitch during the World Cup Final between Germany and Argentina. Zdorovetskiy, who had “Natural Born Prankster” written across his chest, also attempted to kiss German player Benedikt Howedes.