This Day in Failure, January 06
2009: The Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. (OLG) acknowledges that a printing error created 1,100 false “winning” lottery tickets, and that as many as 150 of the defective $3 Fruit Smash scratch tickets had already been purchased. One of the many so-called “winners,” Thomas Noftall, purchased four defective tickets, leading him to believe he had won $135,000 (CAD). OLG apologizes to Noftall and the 27-year-old subsequently accepts an undisclosed financial settlement for his “anxiety and pain and suffering,” becoming the only “winner” to receive compensation.
2007: The California Institute of Technology basketball team defeats Bard College of New York 81-52, ending an 11-year streak of 207 consecutive NCAA Division III losses.
2005: The Detroit Pistons’ Richard Hamilton becomes the first player in NBA history to lead his team in scoring without making a field goal. Hamilton, who scores 14 points, misses all 10 of his shots from the floor but converts 14 free throws in a 101-79 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies.
2001: Ron Hunter, head coach of the men’s basketball team at IUPUI (Indiana-Purdue at Indianapolis), stomps the floor so hard during a 73-71 loss to Youngstown State that he suffers a broken leg.
2001: Congress certifies George W. Bush the winner of the 2000 Presidential election, making Al Gore the third Presidential candidate to win the popular vote but lose the election.
1998: In the worst matchup in NBA history, the Dallas Mavericks (5-27) defeat the Denver Nuggets (2-28) by a score of 108-90. The two teams enter the game with a combined winning percentage of .113 (7-55).
1994: Figure skater Nancy Kerrigan is attacked (struck on the right knee with a baton) by an unidentified man after a practice session at Cobo Hall in Detroit the day before the U.S. National Championships and one month before the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway, where she is the gold medal favorite. Her attacker turns out to be Jeff Gillooly, former husband of Kerrigan’s biggest rival, Tonya Harding, who wins the U.S. Championship after Kerrigan is forced to withdraw due to her injuries. Harding is later stripped of her U.S. title and barred from amateur skating competition for life.
1970: The U.S. Department of Defense announces that more than 1,400 military servicemen deserted to foreign countries during the previous four years. The record number of desertions is attributed to escalating opposition to the Vietnam War.