Is there a Philly title drought?

If the Phillies win tonight, they’ll bring the city of Philadelphia its first championship in a major sport since the Sixers won the NBA finals in 1983.

Is 25 years really a long time to wait? Philadelphia is the eighth largest Combined Statistical Area in the U.S. No larger CSA has waited nearly so long; the closest is San Francisco / Oakland / San Jose, which hasn’t had a champion since the 1990 49ers. But go down the list a little and you find some sorrier stories. Seattle is the 12th largest CSA, about 2/3 as big as Philadelphia. Their last — and only! — champion was the 1979 Seattle SuperSonics. Go down to #15 and you’re at Cleveland, a pretty big city with a long sports history and a devoted fan base, which hasn’t seen a championship of any kind since the 1948 Indians won the World Series.

So stop crying, Philadelphia. When Rocky Colavito curses you, you stay cursed.

Update: See comments for some corrections to my hurriedly compiled statistics.

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4 thoughts on “Is there a Philly title drought?

  1. Suresh says:

    The 49ers also won in 1994-1995 (a spectacular blowout of the Chargers, for Steve Young’s one-and-done ring)

  2. Michael Lugo says:

    But Philadelphia has four teams, and Cleveland has three, and it seems like some adjustment needs to be made for that. (I’m biased, as a long-suffering Phillies fan. Also as a tired Phillies fan, still recovering from the Saturday night/Sunday morning game.)

    The last Philadelphia championship was the 1983 Sixers, twenty-five years ago. Since then, the following Philadelphia teams have failed to win their championships: the 1983-2007 Phillies (25), 1983-2007 Eagles (25), 1984-2008 Flyers (25), and 1984-2008 Sixers (25). So 100
    Philadelphia teams have failed to win the championships of their respective leagues. (In general, I’m referring to teams by the calendar year in which the majority of their season occurs.)

    Meanwhile, Cleveland’s last championship was that of the 1964 Browns. (Not the ’48 Indians.) Since then, they have had 44 baseball seasons (1965-2008 Indians), 40 football seasons (1965-1995 and 1999-2007 Browns), 38 basketball seasons (1971-2008 Cavaliers), and 3 hockey seasons (1976-1978 Barons) occur without a title, for a total of 44 + 40 + 38 + 3 = 125 championship-free seasons.

    So Cleveland “wins”, but it’s not quite so obvious.

  3. Em says:

    There is a Buffalo title drought. That is all.

  4. JSE says:

    Hey, the Buffalo Bisons were International League champions a mere four years ago!

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