Happy 40th Birthday to basketball legend Kobe Bryant, who helped the Los Angeles Lakers win three straight NBA Championships from 2000 to 2002 and two more in 2009 and 2010. He also won an Oscar last year for Best Animated Short film, ‘Dear Basketball‘. WATCH his speech at the Academy Awards… (1978)

(Photo by Steve Lipofsky Basketballphoto.com, CC license)

More Good News from this date in History:

  • Mexico gained its independence from Spain (1821)
  • World Council of Churches formed (1948)
  • Lou Reed and the Velvet Underground performed together for the last time at the New York Club ‘Max’s Kansas City’ (1970)
  • The Baltic independence movement, called the Subbing Revolution, reached a peak when Latvians, Estonians and Lithuanians joined to form a 373-mile human chain (600km) connecting the three capitols, with 2 million people united in a call for democracy and an end to Soviet control (1989)
  • Armenia declared its independence, becoming the first non-Baltic republic to secede from the Soviet Union, which dissolved the following year, allowing the Republic of Armenia to choose its first democratically elected president (1990)
  • West and East Germany announced that they soon would become a united Germany once again (1990)
  • The World Wide Web opened to the public when Tim Berners-Lee, a 36 year-old English computer scientist, opened his WWW protocol to new users at no cost (1991)
  • Eugene Bullard, the only black pilot in World War I, was posthumously commissioned as Second Lieutenant in the United States Air Force (1994)
  • Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi was overthrown in a civil war (2011)

On this day 25 years ago, Dennis Eckersley, who previously set a Major League Baseball record for most consecutive saves (40), became the first pitcher to record 40 saves in four separate seasons. Known for his championship play for the Oakland A’s, “Eck” played for five different teams in his 23-year career.

By-Martyna-Borkowski, CC license

He won nearly every award in baseball during a career which was unique in that he was the first of two pitchers in MLB history to have logged both a 20-win season and a 50-save season, as a starter-turned-reliever. Born in San Francisco, the now 62-year-old works with New England Sports Network (NESN) as a studio analyst and occasional color commentator for Red Sox broadcasts, and as a post-season analyst for Turner Sports.


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