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Finding Comfort In The Failure Of Other Cities

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By Spike Eskin

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Not only has the last year or two in Philadelphia sports been pretty terrible, it seems like there’s always a new reminder of just how terrible it’s been.

When Peter Laviolette was fired as head coach of the Flyers, you may have been reminded (a few hundred times, if you’re on Twitter) that all four of the Philadelphia major sports franchises have replaced their coach in the last calendar year. You may have heard (a few thousands times, if you’re on Twitter), that the longest tenured coach in Philadelphia is Chip Kelly (with a nod to John Hackworth), who was just hired in January.

It was just another tap on the our shoulder from sports about how bad it’s sucked around here.

We’re all cautiously optimistic about Chip Kelly, but that’s just about as far as it goes for most of us, given the performance of the team after that first half against Washington. Ryne Sandberg may be the manager of the century, but he’s got a team full of overpaid, over the hill players that don’t give you the best reason to be optimistic. Sam Hinkie might be the best general manager on the planet, and Brett Brown may be a fantastic coach, but their starting shooting guard is going to James Anderson or Tony Wroten and they will lose at least 60 games this year. And Craig Berube still has the same general manager that Laviolette had.

In short, don’t expect anything too great any time too soon.

But just like girls in a group of friends who find solace in their one friend who is less attractive than they are, we can also find some solace in some cities who have fallen on some hard times as well.

Atlanta did not have a good night on Monday. The Braves were eliminated from the playoffs after having a fantastic regular season, and the Falcons lost at home to the Jets, whose rookie quarterback threw three touchdowns without a turnover.

New York, our good friends slightly to the north, are home to if not the worst team, the second worst team in the NFL in the Giants. The Jets have played well, but they’re still the Jets. The crown of the Mets organization is going to miss all of 2014 after having Tommy John surgery, and the Yankees have a similar outlook as the Phillies, just with more expensive tickets. They’ve also got A-Rod. Sue ‘em all A-Rod. Keep your name in the news as a reminder you’re not here.

Charlotte, poor Charlotte. Though the Bobcats will once again become the Hornets next season, Michael Jordan will still be the owner, and blow draft pick after draft pick while overpaying guys like Al Jefferson. The Panthers are 1-3, under-achieving and on the verge of firing their coach.

The taxes aren’t the only thing that are a bummer about Toronto. The Blue Jays had an expensive, headline grabbing offseason that resulted in a last-place finish. The Raptors will pay Rudy Gay $18 million this year, and $19 million next year. And ESPN says that the Maple Leafs are the worst franchise in all of sports.

I would say something about Cleveland, but they’re having a pretty good year. The Cavs have a bunch of young talent, the Indians made the playoffs, and the Browns are surprising everyone by trading their (supposed) worst player, and ripping off three wins in a row. But they’re Cleveland, I’m confident they’ll blow it.

Jacksonville, there’s no good in Jacksonville. The Jaguars are the worst team in the NFL, and they will probably end up moving anyway. Also, have you ever been to Jacksonville?

Boston has some good teams, but find solace in the fact that the Patriots haven’t won a Super Bowl since they had to stop cheating.

Feel better?

No, I don’t either.

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