by Andrew Porter (@And_Porter)
PHILADELPHIA (CBS)—It’s a bleak time in Philadelphia sports.
The Flyers were eliminated in the first-round of the playoffs by the New York Rangers, who are currently down three games to none in the Stanley Cup Final against former Flyers Jeff Carter, Mike Richards, Justin Williams, and the Los Angeles Kings.
The Sixers are coming off a 19-63 season.
The Phillies have the second worst record in baseball, 25-36, and with a weak farm system and an aging core, the 2008 World Series title seems like decades ago.
The Eagles are about all we have, but we’re still nearly two months away from the first pre-season game.
Leave it to Mr. Optimism, WIP Morning Show host Angelo Cataldi, to come up with five reasons for Philadelphia sports fans to get excited.
Here are his top-five reasons to be excited about Philadelphia sports right now.
5. Jordan Matthews
Matthews, the Eagles second-round draft from Vanderbilt, is a 6’3″, 205-pound wide receiver for the Eagles. His new teammates have already praised him and quarterback Nick Foles called him, “a great addition to this team.”
“A workaholic, a wide receiver with great talent, and apparently he has no ‘diva’ tendencies,” Cataldi said of Matthews.
4. Ron Hextall
After the Flyers first-round playoff loss to the Rangers, the Flyers shifted up their front office. The Flyers promoted former general manager, Paul Holmgren, to President and made Hextell their new GM.
Cataldi is excited about Hextall, the former Vice President and assistant general manager of the Los Angeles Kings, taking over as general manager of the Flyers. The Kings, who won the Stanley Cup in 2012 under Hextall, are up 3-0 in this year’s Cup Final.
3. Jabari Parker
The Sixers have the third and 10th overall picks in the 2014 draft, which is only about two weeks away. The hot debate topic in Philadelphia is who should the Sixers take with the third pick: Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker, or Joel Embiid.
“The Sixers are going to sit there and scoop up the best player in the draft, Jabari Parker,” Cataldi said.
Whether you want Wiggins, Parker, or Embiid we all can be excited about June 26th’s NBA draft.
2. Ken Giles
Or, “fire-balling, 23-year-old Ken Giles,” as Cataldi called him. Giles, a right-handed relief pitcher, was promoted to from Triple-A to the big leagues over the weekend and will soon make his MLB debut with the Phillies. His fastball hovers around 100-MPH and many people, none louder than Cataldi, have been clamoring for Giles over for awhile now.
1. Chip Kelly
From pecan pies to their weekly Monday morning conversations during the season, to his Wing Bowl 21 appearance, Cataldi and Kelly have had a special ‘bromance’ since Kelly’s arrival in Philadelphia. While Cataldi did dish out some criticism during a bumpy 2014 off-season, ultimately he can’t resist his love for the ‘Chippah.’
Coming off a 10-6, NFC East winning first-year season as Eagles head coach, fans should expect Kelly and the Eagles to build upon their successful 2013 campaign.
Cataldi mentioned quotes from new Eagles safety, Malcolm Jenkins who said of this off-season, “I think we’ve worked harder than any team in the NFL.”
Even Kelly himself said the team is “light years” ahead of last year.