The Seven Most Bizarre Sports Riots of All Time
3. The Filipino Basketball Association Features a Surprising Amount of Fan Punching
During a shockingly untelevised Filipino Basketball Association game between the Burger King Whoppers and Smart Gilas in Quezon City, Whoppers captain Wynn Arboleda decided the best way to deal with a heckling fan was to run into the stands and beat the ever living crap out of him.
A small brawl broke out shortly after and Arboleda earned himself a brief suspension to go home to consider the benefits of not punching spectators.
2. Serbian Soccer Players Will Kung-Fu Kick a Policeman if Need be
Photo: Alex Burns/Getty Images Sport/Getty Images
Amidst political unrest and civil war over the recent turmoil in Yugoslavia, Serbian soccer fans' anger got the better of them in a 1990 match between Red Star Belgrade and Dinamo Zagreb.
Within 10 minutes of kick-off, thousands of fans rushed the field in protest and started a full-fledged riot that lasted well over 45 minutes. Eventually, (whatever the Serbian version of) SWAT teams were called in – one of whom was kicked in the head by a Zagreb player – to quiet the crowd.
Unable to end the violence, the police (or rioters) decided that the easiest thing to do would be to simply light the stadium on fire and let it burn to the ground. Interestingly enough, it worked. There was almost no fighting on top of the ash.
If a stadium burns down in the middle of Zagreb – and people are too busy trying to murder each other to hear it – does it really make a sound?
1. The Better Question is “Why Not Kill 30,000 Spectators?”
Note: The photos in this article are being used for illustrative purposes only; any person depicted in the photos is a model.
In ancient Rome, chariot racing was a popular sport which functioned as a distraction for the poor and a leisure pursuit of the wealthy. Teams were divided by social class and given a color.
In 531 AD, various members of the “blue team” were arrested for murder and eventually jailed for their crimes. This displeased the fans, who stormed the prison while chanting “Nika” (which meant victory).
Local Emperor Justinian the First did not like his prison being set on fire, so he launched an attack on the entire fan base which resulted in over 30,000 deaths. It was a bit of a rough afternoon, but still comparably more enjoyable than being a Cubs fan.
(And yes, it sort of sounds like a cross between the movie Gladiator and a heated game of Capture the Flag during Color Wars at summer camp.)