It was certainly great to have a local college team win the NCAA National Championship, as Villanova did last year.
But what Philadelphia Sports fans desperately want is for one of our Pro teams to do the same. It’s been a frustrating nine years since the 2008 Phillies won the championship, and much longer for the other three teams.
Although the Eagles were in two Super Bowl games, their last championship was in 1960. The Sixers made it to the finals in 2001, but they have not won a championship since 1983. The Flyers have come away empty-handed from six appearances in the finals since the second game of their back-to-back Stanley Cup win in 1975.
So, who will it be? And when? A few sports writers, broadcasters, and fans believe the 76ers can make the playoffs this season, but most think it’s at least another few years away. They certainly seem to be headed in the right direction, but there are still too many unknowns. Will Embiid stay healthy for the season? Will Fultz and Simmons go through typical rookie growing pains with periods of lackluster performances? With a new line-up, there is normally a period of adjusting to each other before they really start to gel together.
And what about the other teams? The Phillies have some very talented players in all three areas of the game: pitching, hitting, and fielding, but they are certainly far from being consistent. Most sports writers believe it can’t happen before the early 2020’s, if then. The Flyers fall into the same category; their recent draft picks are very talented players, but it will take a few years until they can really get their act together.
That leaves the Eagles. Last year’s 7-9 record showed deficiencies in both offense and defense that the team needed to address, and address they did. With the addition veteran running backs and receivers taking hand-offs and catching passes from a maturing Carson Wentz, the upcoming season should end with at least an even 8-8 record, and quite possibly 9-7. Either of these would, of course, be an improvement, but would not be anywhere near enough for Philadelphia fans who expect their Eagles to at least make it into the playoffs. While they will be playing some pretty tough teams, especially in their division, on any given day, even the team with the worst record can knock off a tough division rival. Let’s hope the Eagles beat some the stronger contenders.
Whatever team becomes Philly's next Champion, you can be sure Dynasty Sports will have a full line of memorabilia to celebrate the event.