Sports Championships
032017_eagles-fan Matt Rourke/AP, File

Maybe set your sights on something a little better, Eagles fan.

March 20, 2017

Here's where Philly ranks in terms of titles (hint: it's not pretty)

Monday marked the first day of spring. And after the cold we felt over the last few weeks, the 50-degree temperatures outside were more than welcomed. The snow was melting. The Rita's water ice was free. And on sports talk radio, there was a lot of complaining about the current state of sports in this city.

Ah, Philadephia in springtime. 

While listening to the midday show on SportsRadio 94 WIP in my car, hosts Joe DeCamara and Jon Ritchie began discussing something they received from one of their listeners. Basically, it was a reminder of just how bad local sports has been over the last three-plus decades in the form of a list of cities that have won more professional sports championships than Philly since the Sixers last won in 1983. 

As a whole, the city has one – the 2008 Phillies.

Sure, titles are hard to come by in professional sports, but since 1984, there have been 130 other teams to earn victory parades. And it's not like this city hasn't had its share of chances – Philly is 1-8 in championship games/series since '84 (and 1-9 if you count the Phillies' 1983 World Series loss, which technically came after the Sixers' win earlier that year).

In short, there hasn't been a ton of winning, but when there is, it's more often than not met with heartbreak.

I couldn't listen to all of DeCamara and Ritchie, so when I got home, I decided to do some research on my own to see what this list would actually look like. It was one thing to hear it, but seeing it written out front of you, that's when it really starts to sting.

Before breaking any of this down, let's take a look (preferably through one of those contraptions people use to look directly at the sun during a solar eclipse):


NFL NBA MLB NHL TOTAL
*Boston 5 3 3 1 12
*Chicago 1 6 2 3 12
*Los Angeles 1 8 1 2 12
*New York 4 0 6 1 11
*Detroit 0 3 1 4 8
San Francisco 4 0 3 0 7
Pittsburgh 2 0 0 4 6
Dallas 3 1 0 1 5
*Denver 3 0 0 2 5
Edmonton 0 0 0 5 5
*Miami 0 3 2 0 5
San Antonio 0 5 0 0 5
North Jersey 0 0 0 3 3
St. Louis 1 0 2 0 3
Anaheim 0 0 1 1 2
Baltimore 2 0 0 0 2
Green Bay 2 0 0 0 2
Houston 0 2 0 0 2
Kansas City 0 0 2 0 2
*Minnesota 0 0 2 0 2
Montreal 0 0 0 2 2
Oakland 0 1 1 0 2
Tampa Bay 1 0 0 1 2
Toronto 0 0 2 0 2
*Washington 2 0 0 0 2
Atlanta 0 0 1 0 1
Calgary 0 0 0 1 1
Raliegh (NC) 0 0 0 1 1
Cincinnati 0 0 1 0 1
Cleveland 0 1 0 0 1
Indianapolis 1 0 0 0 1
New Orleans 1 0 0 0 1
*PHILADELPHIA 0 0 1 0 1
*Phoenix 0 0 1 0 1
Seattle 1 0 0 0 1
*City has at least one team in each of the four major pro sports

Pretty bad, right? Here's a more visual depiction of those numbers. And while it looks prettier, trust me, the numbers add up the same way.

None

[click to enlarge]
 

Now, a few short notes about these numbers that I think are important:

  1. Philadelphia and Phoenix are the only two cities with teams from all four sports to have only one title.
  2. Boston's 12 titles are by far the most impressive. Not only are they spread out across all four sports, but they only have one team for each, whereas cities like New York, L.A. and Chicago have multiple teams for some sports.
  3. San Francisco could've been even higher if I turned it into "Bay Area" and included Oakland's two titles (Warriors and A's) in there. Ultimately, I decided not to because that would complicate things for other cities – Should Anaheim be included under L.A., even though they weren't yet the L.A. Angels when they won the World Series? Would the Texas Rangers count for Dallas? And what the hell do I do with the Devils?
  4. On a related note, I counted the Marlins under Miami even though they weren't technically in the city when they won both their titles as the "Florida Marlins." They were close enough (they played in the same stadium as the Dolphins) and have since moved there, so we'll count it.

It's been almost nine years since the last parade down Broad Street (for a pro team, anyway), and almost 33 since the one before that. The next logical question is when will this drought – I'm still considering one championship in 131 seasons a drought – come to an end? 

And who will be the team to do it?


Follow Matt on Twitter: @matt_mullin