See also: 2003 in sports, other events of 2004, 2005 in sports, list of 'years in sports'.
On January 28, International Olympic Committee Vice-President Kim Un-yong is arrested on charges of corruption in Seoul. Prosecutors arrest Kim minutes after an arrest warrant is issued by the Seoul District Court, and the 72-year-old was put behind bars after his pre-trial detention was approved.
On April 27, the International Olympic Committee takes out insurance in case the Athens Olympic Games are canceled due to terrorism or natural disasters.
On May 18, the International Olympic Committee announced the list of cities accepted as candidates to host the 2012 Olympic Games. The five candidate cities are Paris, New York, Moscow, London and Madrid.
The 2004 Olympics opened in Athens, Greece on August 13.
See also 2004 in baseball
- These results make UConn only the second school, and the first ever in Division I, to win NCAA men's and women's basketball titles in the same season. Central Missouri State accomplished the double in Division II in 1984.
see also 2004 in cricket
- January 10- Canada Cup
- January 11-
- January 18- 2004 Canadian mixed curling championship
- Final: Alberta (Shannon Kleibrink) 9-5 Ontario (Heath McCormick) Shannon Kleibrink becomes the first woman to skip and win the Canadian mixed curling championship. Last year, she was the first to skip and participate in the event, losing only in the final.
- February 14 - Tunisia beat Morocco 2-1 to clinch the first African Cup of Nations in the country's history.
- February 29 - Middlesbrough F.C. beat Bolton Wanderers F.C. 2-1, to win the Carling Cup (League Cup, England), the club's first cup in their 128 year history.
- April 25 - Premier League - Arsenal clinch the Premier League title, their second in three years, with four games still to play.
- April 29 - San Marino record their first ever win, a 1-0 victory over Liechtenstein in a friendly.
- May 2 - AC Milan clinch the Italian Serie A title.
- May 8 - Werder Bremen win the German Bundesliga
- May 8 - Valencia win the Spanish Primera División
- May 8 - Ajax win the Dutch Eredivisie
- 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 19 - Valencia defeat Marseille 2-0 in the UEFA Cup final in Gothenburg, Sweden.
- May 22 - Manchester United win their record 11th FA Cup, defeating Millwall 3-0.
- May 26 - Porto defeat AS Monaco 3-0 in the Champions League final in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.
- July 1 - Once Caldas (Colombia) defeats Boca Juniors (Argentina) 1-1 on aggregate, 2-0 on penalties to win the Copa Libertadores.
- July 4 - Greece win the UEFA Euro 2004 football tournament, defeating the host nation Portugal 1-0.
- July 25 - Brazil win the Copa America football tournament, defeating Argentina 4-2 on penalties.
- 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.
See also 2004 in golf
- Other United States races
- January 4 - Under 17 World Championship at St. John's
- January 5 - World Junior Hockey Championship at Helsinki, Finland
- 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."
- April 10 - National Women's Hockey League championship at Brampton, Ontario
- April 18 - IIHF World Under-18 Championship at Minsk, Belarus
- April 25 - Allan Cup at Saint-Georges, Quebec
- April 25 - Canadian National Midget Championship at Kenora, Ontario
- Gold Medal Game: Brandon Wheat Kings 2, College Charles-Lemoyne 1 (OT)
- Bronze Medal Game: Red Deer Optimist Chiefs 5, Kenora Stars 2
- May 9 - IIHF World Hockey Championship at Prague, Czech Republic
- May 23 - Memorial Cup at Kelowna, British Columbia
- June 7 - Stanley Cup - Tampa Bay Lightning defeat Calgary Flames 4 games to 3 to win the Stanley Cup.
- September 14 - World Cup of Hockey at Toronto, Canada
- September 15 - NHL collective bargaining agreement expires. Commissioner Gary Bettman announces a lockout of NHLPA players (see National Hockey League labor dispute (2004).
- October 11 - Jean Perron named head coach of Israeli national under-18 hockey team
- January 17 - Winners at the World sprint speedskating championships at Nagano, Japan:
- Men's 500 m: Jeremy Wotherspoon, Canada 35.25
- Women's 500 m: Sayuri Osuga, Japan 38.79
- February 7 - 9 - Winners at the 2004 World Allround Speed Skating Championships at Hamar, Norway:
- Men's 500 m: Yevgeny Lalenkov, Russia 35.780
- Men's 5000 m: Carl Verheijen, Netherlands 6:20.61
- Ladies' 500 m: Jennifer Rodriguez, United States 38.740
- Ladies' 3000 m Renate Groenewold, Netherlands 4:04.58
- Men's 1500 m Shani Davis, United States 1:46.02
- Men's 10,000 m Carl Verheijen, Netherlands 13:17.86
- Ladies' 1500 m Jennifer Rodriguez, United States, 1:57.33
- Ladies' 5000 m Gretha Smit, Netherlands 7:02.89
- Men's all-around champion: Chad Hedrick, United States
- Ladies' all-around champion: Renate Groenewold, Netherlands
- BMO Financial Group Canadian figure skating championships at Edmonton:
- 2004 State Farm U.S. Figure Skating Championships at Atlanta, Georgia:
- January 8:
- Junior Pairs winners: Shantel Jordan and Jeremy Barrett, Bradenton, Florida, 2.5 factored placements
- January 9:
- Junior Men's winner: Christopher Toland, 3.5
- Junior Ice Dance winners: Morgan Matthews and Maxim Zavozin, New York City, 2.0
- January 10:
- Senior Men's winner: Johnny Weir, Newark, Delaware, 1.5
- Senior Pairs winners: Rena Inoue and John Baldwin, 2.0
- Junior Ladies' winner: Kimberly Meissner, Bel Air, Maryland, 2.0
- Senior Ice Dance winners: Tanith Belbin and Benjamin Agosto, Detroit, Michigan, 2.0
- January 11:
- 2004 World Figure Skating Championships, Dortmund, Germany
- March 24, Senior Pairs:
- March 25, Senior Men's:
- March 26, Senior Dance:
- Tatiana Navka and Roman Kostomarov, Russia, 2.0
- Albena Denkova and Maxim Staviski, Bulgaria, 3.6
- Kati Winkler and Rene Lohse, Germany, 6.2
- March 27, Senior Ladies':
- January 10- World junior short-track speed skating championships at Beijing
- Men's 500 m winner: Ho-Suk Lee, South Korea 42.542 seconds
- Women's 500 m winner: Anouk Leblanc-Boucher, Canada 45.689 seconds
- January 11-
- Men's 1000 m winner: Ki-Deok Kwon, South Korea 1:28.682
- Women's 1000 m winner: Yun-Mi Kang, South Korea 1:36.040
- January 17- European short-track speedskating championship at Zoetermeer, Netherlands:
- Women's 500 m: Evgenia Radanova, Bulgaria 44.882
- Men's 500 m: Nicola Franceschina, Italy 42. 845
- Cross-country skiing
- January 10- World Cup men's cross-country skiing competition at Otepaa, Finland winner, 30 km mass start: Frode Estil, Norway, 1:15:18.1
- January 17- World Cup cross-country ski meet at Nove Mesto na Morave, Czech Republic
- Men's 15 km classical style winner: Andrus Veerpalu, Estonia 42:27.6
- Women's 10 km classical style winner: Gabriella Paruzzi, Italy 31:17.6
- Downhill skiing
- January 4 - Men's World Cup Slalom Competition at Flachau, Austria winner: Kalle Palander, Finland, 1:42.24
- January 4 - Women's World Cip Giant Slalom Competition at Megeve, France winner: Alexandra Meissnitzer, Austria 1:24.98
- January 10 - Men's World Cup downhill race at Chamonix, France winner: Stephane Eberharter, Austria 1:59.08
- January 10- Women's World Cup downhill ski race at Veysonnaz, Switzerland winner: Renate Goetschl, Austria 1:38.58
- January 11- Men's World Cup slalom at Chamonix, France winner: Giorgio Rocca, Italy 1:29.09
- January 17- Women's World Cup downhill race at Cortina d'Ampezzo, Italy winner: Hilde Gerg, Germany 1:17.57
- Freestyle skiing
- January 10- Ericsson World Freestyle skiing competition at Mont Tremblant, Quebec
- Women's Moguls winner: Stephanie St. Pierre, Canada 24.25 points
- Men's Moguls winner: Marc-Andre Moreau, Canada 25.14 points
- January 16- Freesyle FIS World Cup at Lake Placid, New York
- Women's aerials winner: Jiao Wang, China 183.61
- Men's aerials winner: Steve Omischl, Canada 246.01
- January 17
- Women's Moguls winner: Jennifer Heil, Canada 26.77
- Men's Moguls winner: Janne Lahtela, Finland 26.29
- Giant slalom
- January 3 - Men's World Cup Giant Slalom Competition at Flachau, Austria winner: Benjamin Raich, Austria, 2:22.54
- Nordic skiing
- Ski jumping
- January 3 - World Cup men's "big air" snowboarding competition at Klagenfurt, Austria winner: Aleksi Vanninen, Finland, 1,000 points
- January 6 - World Cup snowboard parallel slalom at Bad Gastein, Austria
- Men's winner: Dejan Josir, Slovenia, 1,000
- Women's winner: Jagna Kolasinska-Marczulajtis, Poland, 1,000
- January 10 - World Cup giant slalom race at L'Alpe d'Huez, France
- Men's Parallel Giant Slalom winner: Urs Eiselin, Switzerland, 1,000
- Women's Parallel Giant Slalom winner: Daniela Meuli, Switzerland, 1,000
- January 16 - World Cup cross at Arosa, Switzerland
- Men's winner: Stefano Pozzolini, Italy 1,000
- Women's winner: Karine Ruby, France 1,000
- January 17 -
- Men's winner: Simone Malusa, Italy 1,000
- Women's winner: Karine Ruby, France 1,000
- 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.
- May 5 - May 16 - European LC Championships in Madrid. Winners are:
- Mens 50 m butterfly stroke: Sergiy Breus, Ukraine 24.02
- Mens 50 m backstroke: Stev Theloke, Germany 25.61
- Mens 50 m breaststroke: Oleg Lisogor, Ukraine 27.55
- Mens 100 m backstroke: Laszlo Cseh, Hungary 55.26
- Mens 100 m breaststroke: Oleg Lisogor, Ukraine 1:01.23
- Mens 100 m freestyle: Filippo Magnini, Italy 48.87
- Mens 100 m butterfly stroke: Andriy Serdinov, Ukraine 52.31
- Mens 200 m freestyle: Pieter van den Hoogenband, Netherlands 1:47.05
- Mens 200 m backstroke: Paolo Bossini, Italy 2:11.73
- Mens 200 m breaststroke: Markus Rogan, Austria 2:57.58
- Mens 200 m butterfly stroke: Denis Sylantyev, Ukraine 1:56.71
- Mens 200 m IM: Markus Rogan, Austria 1:59.79
- Mens 400 m freestyle: Emiliano Brembilla, Italy 3:49.14
- Mens 1500 m freestyle: Yuri Prilukov, Russia 15:04.35
- Mens 4 x 100 m freestyle relay: Italy 3:15.66
- Mens 4 x 200 m freestyle relay: Italy 7:11.93
- Womens 50 m butterfly stroke: Natalia Sutiagina, Russia 27.04
- Womens 50 m breaststroke: Maria Ostling, Sweden 31.68
- Womens 100 m butterfly stroke: Martina Moravcova, Slovakia 58.05
- Womens 100 m freestyle: Malia Metella, France 54.46
- Womens 100 m backstroke: Laure Manaudou, France 1:00.93
- Womens 100 m breastroke: Svitlana Bondarenko, Ukraine 1:09.23
- Womens 200 m backstroke: Stanislava Komarova, Russia 2:10.97
- Womens 200 m freestyle: Camelia Potec, Romania 1:58.20
- Womens 200 m breaststroke: Mirna Jukic, Austria 2:27.25
- Womens 200 m IM: Yana Klochkova, Ukraine 2:12.56
- Womens 400 m IM: Yana Klochkova, Ukraine 4:38.52
- Womens 800 m freestyle: Erika Villaecija, Spain 8:31.26
- Womens 4 x 100 m freestyle relay: France 3:40.67
- Womens 4 x 200 m freestyle relay: Spain 8:03.41
See also 2004 in tennis
- January 2: Paul Hopkins, 99, reported to be the oldest living former Major League Baseball player
- January 5 - TG Jones - Footballer (Soccer) Wales and Everton
- January 14: Mike Goliat, 78, member of the famous Phillies' "Whiz Kids" team that won the 1950 NL pennant
- January 17: Harry "The Cat" Brecheen, 89, former MLB pitcher
- January 19: David Hookes - Australian cricketer
- January 25: Fanny Blankers-Koen, 85 - legendary Dutch athlete
- January 25: Miklos Feher - Hungarian Footballer (Soccer)
- February 1: Ally McLeod - Footballer (soccer) and former Scottish national team manager
- February 14: Marco Pantani, 34 - Italian cyclist, winner of 1998 Tour de France
- February 17: Shirley Strickland de la Hunty - Australian Athlete
- February 21: John Charles - Welsh Footballer (soccer) for Leeds, Juventus, Roma, Cardiff and Wales
- February 22: Andy Seminick, 83, former MLB catcher who played for the 1950 Phillies' "Whiz Kids" team
- March 18: Gene Bearden, 83, former MLB pitcher who played for the Cleveland Indians
- March 22: Peter Jackson - England and Lions winger
- April 4 - George Bamberger, 80, former MLB pitcher and manager
- April 10: Lou Berberet, 74, former MLB catcher who played for the Yankees, Senators, Red Sox and Tigers
- April 12: Frankie Narvaez, 65, Puerto Rican boxer
- April 20: Ronnie Simpson - Newcastle, Celtic and Scotland goalkeeper
- April 22: Pat Tillman, 27 - American football player who left the NFL to enlist in the United States Army; killed in action in Afghanistan
- May 2: Moe Burtschy, 82, former MLB pitcher for the Philadelphia & Kansas City Athletics
- May 3: Darrell Johnson, 75, former MLB catcher who was manager for the Boston Red Sox in the 1975 World Series
- May 17 Buster Narum, 63, former MLB pitcher for the Orioles and Senators
- June 4 Wilmer Fields, 81, former Negro League Baseball All-Star
- June 8: Mack Jones, 65, former MLB outfielder, who played for the Milwaukee & Atlanta Braves, Cincinnati Reds and Montreal Expos
- September 4: Caroline Pratt, 42, equestrian, died in an accident at the Burghley Horse Trials
- September 4: Bob Boyd, 84, former MLB first baseman; the first black player to sign with the White Sox, and the first Oriole regular to hit over .300 in the 20th century
- September 19: Line Oestvold, 26, Norwegian snowboarder, after a crash in training in Chile.
- September 20: Brian Clough, 69, English footballer and manager, won successive European Cups in 1979 and 1980 as manager of Nottingham Forest F.C.
- October 2: Bolat Kesikhbaev, vice president of Kazakh Boxing Federation, heart attack
- October 3: John Cerutti, 44, baseball broadcaster
- October 10: Ken Caminiti, 41, baseball player; National League Most Valuable Player in 1996.
- October 11: Keith Miller, 84, Australian rules footballer, cricketer, fighter pilot and journalist
- October 17: Ray Boone, 81, Major League Baseball player; father of Bob Boone, grandfather of Aaron and Bret Boone
- October 23: Bill Nicholson, 85, British football player, manager, coach, scout for Tottenham Hotspur F.C.
- October 24: Ricky Hendrick, 24, NASCAR driver, in a plane crash with nine other people, including the two pilots and members of his father Rick Hendrick's family in Martinsville, Virginia
- October 26: Beto Avila, 80, Mexican Major League Baseball second baseman
- October 27: Serginho, 30, Brazilian footballer, a heart attack during a Campeonato Brasileiro match.