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2004 in sports describes the year's events in world sport.
- Super Bowl XXXVIII – the New England Patriots (AFC) won 32–29 over the Carolina Panthers (NFC)
- Sugar Bowl (2003 season):
- Rose Bowl (2003 season):
- August 8 – John Elway, Barry Sanders, Carl Eller and Bob Brown are inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame
- September 19 – Jerry Rice's record of 274 consecutive games with a pass reception comes to an end, although his Oakland Raiders defeat the Buffalo Bills, 13–10.
- September 26 – After Pittsburgh Steelers journeyman quarterback Tommy Maddox suffered an elbow injury during the 2nd game of the season, rookie quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, the 11th pick in the 2004 NFL Draft made his first professional start in a Week 3 game vs the Miami Dolphins, a 13–3 win for the Steelers. Roethlisberger would start the remainder of the season and went 13-0 as a starter, the best start for a rookie quarterback since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger. The Steelers' impressive run would come to an end when they lost to the eventual Super Bowl champion New England Patriots 27–41 in the AFC Championship Game. This season marked the beginning of a new era for the Steelers, as Roethlisberger would lead them to 3 Super Bowl appearances, winning 2 of them. The Steelers also haven't had a losing record since this season as of 2020.
- September 27 – Morten Andersen appears in his 341st NFL game, breaking the record set by George Blanda.
- December 26 – Peyton Manning threw his 49th touchdown pass of the season in a game against the San Diego Chargers breaking Dan Marino's single season touchdown record
- February 14 – Tunisia beat Morocco 2–1 to clinch the first Africa Cup of Nations in the country's history.
- May 15 – Arsenal complete their last game of the Premier League season with a victory, becoming the first team to go unbeaten for a whole season in the top division of English football since Preston North End in 1889.
- May 26 – Porto defeat AS Monaco 3–0 in the UEFA Champions League Final in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.
- April 28 – San Marino record their first international victory, defeating Liechtenstein 1–0.
- July 4 – Greece surprisingly win the UEFA Euro 2004 football tournament, defeating the host nation Portugal 1–0.
- July 25 – Brazil win the Copa América football tournament, defeating Argentina 4–2 on penalties.
- August 7 – Japan win the 2004 Asian Cup football tournament, defeating China 3–1.
- August 26 – United States win the Olympic women's football tournament, defeating Brazil 2–1 in extra time.
- August 28 – Argentina win the Olympic men's football tournament, defeating Paraguay 1–0.
- September 20 – death of Brian Clough, 69, English manager who won successive European Cups in 1979 and 1980 as manager of Nottingham Forest
- October 27 – death of Serginho, 30, Brazilian player wo suffered a fatal heart attack during a Campeonato Brasileiro match
- December 17 – Boca Juniors defeats Bolívar 2–1 on aggregate to win the Copa Sudamericana final in Buenos Aires
- August – Athletics at the 2004 Summer Olympics held at Athens
- June 27 College World Series – Cal State Fullerton wins the NCAA College World Series, defeating Texas 3–2 to win the best-of-three championship series 2–0.
- September 17 – At San Francisco, Barry Bonds becomes just the third player in MLB history to hit 700 home runs. Bonds joined the select company of Hall of Famers Hank Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714) with his historic blast off San Diego Padres Jake Peavy in the third inning.
- September 17 – At Seattle, Ichiro Suzuki hits his 199th single of the season, breaking the major league baseball record of 198, set by Lloyd Waner in 1927.
- September 29 – Major League Baseball announces that the Montreal Expos will be moved to the Washington, D.C. area for the 2005 season.
- October 1 – Ichiro Suzuki of the Seattle Mariners gets two base hits to break the 83-year-old record for most hits in a single season. The previous record, held by George Sisler, was 257 hits in a season.
- October 25 – The Seibu Lions win the Japan Series with a 4–3 series win over the Chunichi Dragons.
- October 27 – The Boston Red Sox sweep the St. Louis Cardinals, four games to none, to win the World Series for the first time in 86 years.
- October 29 – Tohoku Eagles officially founded in Sendai, Japan.
- NBA Finals – The Detroit Pistons, in a major upset, defeat the heavily favored Los Angeles Lakers, 4 games to 1. It is the Pistons first NBA title in fourteen years, and the third in franchise history.
- WNBA Finals – The Seattle Storm defeat the Connecticut Sun in three games.
- NCAA Men's Basketball Championship
- NCAA Women's Basketball Championship
- Euroleague – Maccabi Tel Aviv of Israel wins the final 118–74 over Fortitudo Bologna of Italy.
- Chinese Basketball Association finals: Guangdong Southern Tigers defeat Bayi Rockets, 3 games to 1.
- National Basketball League (Australia) – Sydney Kings defeated the West Sydney Razorbacks 3–2 in best-of-five final series.
- February 19 to February 29 – 35th European Amateur Boxing Championships held in Pula, Croatia
- March 13 – world junior middleweight championship unified as Shane Mosley lost to Winky Wright.
- May 15 – Antonio Tarver won the WBC light-heavyweight title with a second-round knockout of champion Roy Jones Jr.
- July 30 – Danny Williams knocks out Mike Tyson in the fourth round of a non-championship bout.
- August 16 – Robert Quiroga, former International Boxing Federation super flyweight champion, found stabbed to death.
- September 18 – Bernard Hopkins successfully defends his undisputed middleweight title with a ninth-round knockout of Oscar De La Hoya.
- March 12 – Shane Warne becomes the first spinner in history to take 500 Test wickets
- March 13 – India beat Pakistan in the highest scoring One Day International ever (693 runs), in the opening match of their first Pakistan tour since 1989
- April 2 – Zimbabwe Cricket Union announces the retirement of Heath Streak as captain of Zimbabwe. It is later revealed he was sacked, and 15 senior players withdraw from Zimbabwean cricket, citing political interference by Robert Mugabe's government in team selection.
- April 12 – West Indies' Brian Lara regains the individual Test innings record from Matthew Hayden with 400 not out in the fourth Test against England in St. John's, Antigua
- May 8 – Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralitharan breaks Courtney Walsh's world record of 519 Test wickets with his 520th wicket against Zimbabwe in Harare
- June 10 – Zimbabwe Cricket Union agrees to abandon any further Test matches in 2004, under pressure from International Cricket Council over substandard teams due to 15 striking players.
- September 10 – September 25 – ICC Champions Trophy in England – West Indies beats England in the final.
- Giro d'Italia won by Damiano Cunego of Italy. Sprinter Alessandro Petacchi wins nine stages. See 2004 Giro d'Italia
- Tour de France won by Lance Armstrong, his record-setting sixth consecutive title.
- Gaelic football
- Ladies' Gaelic football
- Major Championships
- Masters Tournament – Phil Mickelson wins the first major of his career.
- U.S. Open – Retief Goosen wins his second U.S. Open title
- British Open – Todd Hamilton, a virtual unknown, wins at Royal Troon in a playoff over Ernie Els
- PGA Championship – Vijay Singh wins in a three-hole playoff over Chris DiMarco and Justin Leonard.
- Team Europe defeats Team USA 18½ – 9½ to retain the Ryder Cup.
- Kraft Nabisco Championship – Grace Park wins the first major of the LPGA season, by one shot over 17-year-old Aree Song. Michelle Wie finished fourth, four shots behind Park.
- LPGA Championship – Annika Sörenstam
- U.S. Women's Open – Meg Mallon
- Women's British Open – Karen Stupples
- LPGA Tour money leader – Annika Sörenstam – $2,544,707
- Australia – Melbourne Cup won by Makybe Diva
- Canada – Queen's Plate won by Niigon
- Dubai – Dubai World Cup won by Pleasantly Perfect
- France – Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe won by Bago
- Ireland – Irish Derby Stakes won by Grey Swallow
- Japan – Japan Cup won by Zenno Rob Roy
- English Triple Crown Races:
- United States Triple Crown Races:
- Breeders' Cup World Thoroughbred Championships:
- February 12 – An independent audit by Arthur Levitt reveals that National Hockey League teams lost a collective US$273 million in 2003, and suggests the league is "on the road to oblivion."
- 2004 Women's World Ice Hockey Championships at Halifax, Nova Scotia – Canada defeats USA 2–0 in the final
- 2004 Men's World Ice Hockey Championships held at Prague – Canada defeats Sweden 5–3 in the final
- Stanley Cup – Tampa Bay Lightning defeats Calgary Flames 4 games to 3
- 2004 World Cup of Hockey held at Toronto – Canada 3-2 Finland
- September 15 – NHL collective bargaining agreement expires. Commissioner Gary Bettman announces a lockout of NHLPA players.
- November 21 – India wins the first-ever World Cup kabaddi championship defeating Iran in the final held at Mumbai.
- February 22 – National Lacrosse League – The East Division All-Stars defeat the West Division All-Stars 19–15 in the All Star Game.
- May 7 – National Lacrosse League – Calgary Roughnecks defeat Buffalo Bandits 14–11 to win Champion's Cup
- May 30 – LeMoyne College defeats Limestone 11-10 (2OT) for first Division II National Championship.
- August – European Lacrosse Championships
- Men's – England defeats Germany
- Women's – Wales A defeats Scotland A
- August 22 – Major League Lacrosse – Philadelphia Barrage defeat Boston Cannons 13–11 to win league championship at Boston
- Clarington Green Gaels win the Founders Cup
- Peterborough Lakers win the Mann Cup
- Burnaby Lakers win the Minto Cup
The following is a list of major noteworthy MMA events during 2004 in chronological order.
- First ever World Championship in Trail Orienteering held September 15–18 in Västerås, Sweden
- Twelfth Amateur Radio Direction Finding World Championship held in Brno, Czech Republic
- February 13 at Huddersfield, England – 2004 World Club Challenge match is won by the Bradford Bulls 22–4 against Penrith Panthers at Alfred McAlpine Stadium before 18,962
- April 23 at Newcastle, Australia – 2004 ANZAC Test match is won by Australia 37–10 over New Zealand at EnergyAustralia Stadium before 21,537
- May 15 at Millennium Stadium, Cardiff – 2004 Challenge Cup tournament won by St. Helens with a 32–16 win over Wigan Warriors in the final before 73,734.
- June 17 – Martin Gleeson and Sean Long are banned for four and three months respectively after placing bets on their side, St. Helens, to lose a Super League match against the Bradford Bulls
- October 3 – Canterbury Bulldogs defeats Sydney Roosters 16–13 in the Grand Final to win the NRL premiership
- October 16 – Leeds Rhinos defeats Bradford Bulls 16–8 in the Super League Grand Final to become champions of Super League IX
- November 27 – Australia defeats Great Britain 44–4 in the final of the second Tri-Nations competition
- 110th Six Nations Championship series is won by France who complete the Grand Slam
- Super 12 Final – ACT Brumbies defeated Crusaders 47-38
- Heineken Cup Final – London Wasps defeated Toulouse 27-20
- Tri Nations Series – South Africa win due to bonus points, after all sides finish with two wins and two losses
- New Zealand retain the Bledisloe Cup
- World Snooker Championship – Ronnie O'Sullivan beats Graeme Dott 18-8
- World rankings – Ronnie O'Sullivan becomes world number one for 2004-05
- October 16 – in a qualifying match for the UK Championship, Jamie Burnett makes a break of 148 against Leo Fernandez and becomes the first player to achieve a break higher than the nominal maximum of 147 in a professional match.
- January 13–14 – World Cup (short course) held at Stockholm
- January 18 – Yang Yu sets a world record in the women's 200m butterfly (short course) in Berlin with a time of 2:04.04, exactly four years after the previous record was set.
- March 25 – Frédérick Bousquet breaks the world record in the men's 50m freestyle (short course) at New York City, clocking 21.10
- May 5–16 – 27th European LC Championships held at Madrid
- Russia wins the most medals (16) and Ukraine the most gold medals (9)
- August 14–22 – Swimming at the 2004 Summer Olympics held at Athens
- USA wins the most medals (28) and the most gold medals (12)
- (October 7–1) – 7th World Short Course Championships held at Indianapolis
- USA wins the most medals (41) and the most gold medals (21)
- December 9–12 – 8th European SC Championships held at Vienna
- Germany wins the most medals (22) and the most gold medals (9)
- Australian Open
- French Open
- Wimbledon Championships
- U.S. Open
- 2004 Summer Olympics
- 2004 Summer Olympics held from August 13 to August 29 in Athens. Leading medal winners:
|1||United States (USA)||36||39||27||102|
|Totals (5 entries)||128||108||107||343|
- "Epsom Derby | History, Winners, & Facts | Britannica". www.britannica.com. Retrieved 4 January 2022.