Monday, June 01, 2009
Miserable Sports Cities
Just when something good was about to happen to Cleveland, a city that's been waiting for nearly 50 years for something good to happen, along comes Dwight Howard, raining threes and punishing defense to remind Cleveland natives that "good" and "sports" in the same sentence just aren't meant to be.
But Cleveland isn't the only city that's hurting. Here's a look at the top five most miserable sports cities. As always, omissions, thoughts and disagreements welcome in the comments.
Hard to consider Atlanta as miserable seeing as the Braves won 14-straight division titles starting in 1991. Yet, they only won one World Series in that span ('95) and have had mediocre attendance since, despite their regular-season success.
Aside from the Hawk's 1958 championship (which actually occurred while in St. Louis), Atlanta's success has been scattered and inconsistent. The Dirty Bird was fun while it last, though.
4. San Diego
Neither the Chargers or Padres have won a Super Bowl or World Series, respectively, though the Chargers did win an AFL title in 1963.
Of the four pro teams to have called San Diego home (the Rockets and Clippers used to play there), none have an overall winning record in the city. This futility has led to the term San Diego sports curse. Nobody really refers to the San Diego sports as a curse because we don't think anybody really cares. Great weather and nice beaches can really go a long way...
It's been 44 years since Buffalo has been a championship city. Sure, the Bills tried really, really hard in the 90s, but lost four-straight Super Bowls, which must be some sort of record.
The Sabres have had success, yet have only made it to the Stanley Cup Finals twice, most recently in 1999 losing to the Stars in six.
Pro baseball and basketball isn't really a big deal up there. But Niagara Falls is pretty neat.
The Emerald City's last professional championship was 30 years ago by a team that no longer plays there (the Sonics). Of course the Seattle Storm captured a WNBA crown in 2004, but nobody really seems to notice that.
The Seahawks made the 2006 Super Bowl and have been a playoff team for much of the decade, yet its history is built on losing.
The Mariners won a record 116 games in 2001, yet remain one of few teams to never reach the World Series.
The Washington Huskies football team captured a co-National Championship with Miami in 1991, but are in the midst of five straight losing seasons and went 0-12 last year which we still can't believe actually happened.
The Browns won the NFL Championship in 1964 and that's about all the city's got. Of course Art Modell moved the team to Baltimore in '96 (where the Ravens later won a championship to add to the pain) and the city was without an NFL team for three years. Now they have Brady Quinn. Take that any way you want.
The Indians made the World Series in 1997, yet lost to the Marlins and have the second longest World Series drought behind the Cubs. They're more known for their controversial mascot than anything else.
The Cavs made the NBA Finals in 2007, only to be swept. This latest disappointment will lead to off-season speculation of LeBron James' future in Cleveland. If he leaves, Cleveland could become a ghost town.