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Your Turn, D.C. (Updated and Expanded)


Steinberg says: 'Man , I'm jealous. Why can't us, for once?' (By William Thomas Cain - Getty)


The Philadelphia Phillies ended 28 years and 46 hours of futility on Wednesday night by winning their first World Series since 1980, the second title in franchise history.

It also was Philadelphia's first world championship in 25 years, dating from the days of Dr. J., Moses Malone and the 76ers. Any guesses as to the city with the four major sports that has NOW gone the longest without a title? That would be Washington, D.C., which is tied with Minneapolis.

Technically, it's Minneapolis that has gone longer without a major championship because its last claim to fame was the 1991 Twins. Washington's last title came via the 1991 Redskins, who actually won the Super Bowl in January 1992. That said, Washington fans have had very little to cheer about, save for D.C. United and its four MLS Cups.

You would have to think that Washington's day is coming. The Redskins appear to be on the rise with the second-best record in the NFC. The NHL's best player dresses in Capitals red, white and blue. The Wizards have made the playoffs each of the last four seasons, providing some hope -- at least -- every time the calendar turns to April. And the Nationals ... uh, did I mention the Redskins?

So with that in mind, folks, we bring you a poll -- which franchise brings home the next championship for Washington sports? Expound on it -- and say when -- in the comments

Editor's note: Nearly simultaneously today, Dan Steinberg posted on this same issue. See the jump for Dan's take and to vote in the poll.

D.C. Becomes Most Miserable Sports City

From Dan Steinberg of the D.C. Sports Bog:

The long-awaited subtext of the Phillies' inevitable World Series win is now upon us. With Philadelphia now at the bottom of the ranks of "Big-Four Sports City With Longest Wait Since Title," the new locus of misery has settled in between the Potomac and the Anacostia.

Ok, actually, for a lot of reasons, that's a pile of hooey.

1) We're actually in a tie with the Twin Cities, and the Redskins' last Super Bowl (technically in '92, although attached to the '91 season) came a few months after the Twins' Last World Series (fall of '91). So really, it's not even a tie; Minneapolis/St. Paul wins. We're second on the misery scale.

2) For most of that span, we didn't even have a baseball team.

3) "Big-Four" is a 20th century anachronism. "Big-Five," if anything, and D.C. United has won plenty of titles since '91.

4) "Big-Four" is too restrictive; Cleveland may not have a hockey team, but that doesn't mean Cleveland sports fans are in any way less miserable than D.C. sports fans. Is it really less miserable to not have hockey, and not have a Super Bowl championship, than to have an occasionally unsuccessful NHL team and a bunch of rings?

Regardless, here are the current standings, with the number of years since a mythical Big-Four championship. And so I ask, which D.C. "Big-Four" team will be responsible for breaking the streak and leaving the upper Midwest Scandinavians in sole and obvious possession of the Most Miserable crown?




1t. Minneapolis/St. Paul - 17 years (Twins)
1t. Washington D.C. - 17 years (Redskins)
3. San Francisco - 14 years (49ers)
4. Atlanta - 13 years (Braves)
5. Dallas - 9 years (Stars)
6t. Denver - 7 years (Avalanche)
6t. Phoenix - 7 years (Diamondbacks)
8. Chicago - 3 years (White Sox)
9. Miami - 2 years (Heat)
10. New York - 1 year (Giants)
11t. Boston - 0 years (Celtics)
11t. Detroit - 0 years (Red Wings)
11t. Philadelphia - 0 years (Phillies)

By Tom Heleba  |  October 30, 2008; 8:45 AM ET
 
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Comments

Skins have a 3-4 year window starting now. Cap's have one for the tenure of Ovech's career, they just need to get some better defenders. Wiz are the furthest away of those three. But I expect at some point the Nat's will figure something out and boom title.

Posted by: alex35332 | October 30, 2008 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Caps first (in 1-3yrs), Skins second (in 2-4 yrs), Nats third (in 3-6yrs) and Wizards (are stuck with the players they've got and don't have a window opening up for at least 5 years at which point Arenas will be to old to matter and Nick Young will be with another team) fourth

Posted by: Berndaddy | October 30, 2008 10:08 AM | Report abuse

Actually,
The NHL's best player is dressed in Gold, Black, and White.
2nd best is in Washington. Go ahead, take a national poll and anyone will say Crosby is better.

The Caps are WAY more than 1-3 years away. They have no goaltending and bad D.

Skins are probably going to be there in 2 years.

And the Nats? Who are they?

Posted by: rdy4all2000 | October 30, 2008 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Nats may not be next, but they will get it done...might be 25 more years though.

Posted by: cokedispatch | October 30, 2008 10:46 AM | Report abuse

DC won't win another title until they realize that winning a championship is a privledge and a tangible achievement that must be achieved.

Its not a right that the city wins a championship......LOL

Posted by: caphcky | October 30, 2008 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Cry Cry Cry Crosby better than Ovie? Ha, Ha,Ha Ha!! Boy, no love for Wiz. I guess fans still believe in the Curse of Le Boulez.

Posted by: adhardwick | October 30, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

Caphcky,
its that kind of loser philosophy that leads teams like the cubs to have fans. It IS OUR RIGHT TO WIN!

Posted by: alex35332 | October 30, 2008 10:56 AM | Report abuse

So because DC got an expansion team four years ago, we're now on the list, but Los Angeles with two of everything, but no football team, isn't? hoookay.

Look, it's been decades since Cleveland won anything, so even though they don't have a hockey team, they're still the biggest loser for me. And Philly may have won the World Series, but guaranteed the city will still go into a deep depression as soon as the Eagles lose. (The town is so much more a football town than a baseball town.)

Posted by: tgoren71 | October 30, 2008 11:10 AM | Report abuse

Not only has it been 17 years since the Redskins won the Super Bowl, it's been 11 years since any DC pro team has played in the finals of its sport. The last time was the Caps in 1997 (I think). Among cities with teams in 3+ sports, DC has got to have the longest championship appearance drought.

Posted by: dckwanzaa | October 30, 2008 11:14 AM | Report abuse

Best Hockey player wears red, white, and blue.

If you take a nationwide poll of the people who know about this sort of thing, they'll award the MVP to Ovechkin. He's also the leading scorer by a significant margin.

He's the best right now. Period.

Posted by: bflorhodes | October 30, 2008 11:18 AM | Report abuse

The George Mason final four run in '05 makes up for all of it.

Posted by: DCman1 | October 30, 2008 11:23 AM | Report abuse

I was thinking of Mason, too, DCman.

Posted by: natsfan1a1 | October 30, 2008 11:58 AM | Report abuse

The big question here is whether this win, combined with their teams' ongoing futility in sports that matter more than baseball, will move Philly fans back above Boston fans at the top of the Insufferability-to-Other-Fans Index.

Posted by: NateinthePDX | October 30, 2008 12:10 PM | Report abuse

Take a poll about Ovie and Crosby? OK. I vote for the guy who led the league in goals and scoring over the guy who watched most of last season on television.

Skins will not get there until they learn to draft players to take over the OL instead of receivers to take over the bench. JC won't last long otherwise.

Wizards? Not anytime soon. Defense wins championships and they have none. Sorry, Abe.

The Nats? It's possible but they'll have to spend some cash. Good luck with that.

DCU? They should regain their form next season (with a new coach). Hopefully Jaime gets one more star before leaving.

But the Caps should get their first.

Posted by: RIP-21 | October 30, 2008 12:19 PM | Report abuse

AO may be the obvious best but most people with hockey knowledge will judge based on more than just goal scoring ability.

In a national poll, Crosby wins, hands down.


As far as Philly being more of a football town, Philly is a SPORTS town...PERIOD

Posted by: rdy4all2000 | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

AO may be the obvious best but most people with hockey knowledge will judge based on more than just goal scoring ability.

In a national poll, Crosby wins, hands down.


As far as Philly being more of a football town, Philly is a SPORTS town...PERIOD

Posted by: rdy4all2000 | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

AO may be the obvious best but most people with hockey knowledge will judge based on more than just goal scoring ability.

In a national poll, Crosby wins, hands down.


As far as Philly being more of a football town, Philly is a SPORTS town...PERIOD

Posted by: rdy4all2000 | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

AO may be the obvious best but most people with hockey knowledge will judge based on more than just goal scoring ability.

In a national poll, Crosby wins, hands down.


As far as Philly being more of a football town, Philly is a SPORTS town...PERIOD

Posted by: rdy4all2000 | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

AO may be the obvious best but most people with hockey knowledge will judge based on more than just goal scoring ability.

In a national poll, Crosby wins, hands down.


As far as Philly being more of a football town, Philly is a SPORTS town...PERIOD

Posted by: rdy4all2000 | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Ok folks let's be real here, after the 'Skins, DC is a college hoops town. If the Terps are doing well, or G'twn has a big win, the Caps AND Wiz are on page two. Remember the town after the Terps National Champoinship?

Posted by: TParkSteve | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Mason? It was a great run, but they did come up short. If you want to talk recent titles and college sports, remember Maryland took home the NCAA basketball title in 2002.

Posted by: ajdube | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Mason? It was a great run, but they did come up short. If you want to talk recent titles and college sports, remember Maryland took home the NCAA basketball title in 2002.

Posted by: ajdube | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Mason? It was a great run, but they did come up short. If you want to talk recent titles and college sports, remember Maryland took home the NCAA basketball title in 2002.

Posted by: ajdube | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

Umm after the 'Skins DC is a college hoops town. If MD or G'twn have a big win, the Wiz & Caps are on page 2. Our civic sports woes are not deep as we have our championships filled by our major colleges, 2 NCAA Hoops Champions at MD, Hoyas Final 4, Mason Final 4... DC is Redskins, then college hoops...

Posted by: TParkSteve | October 30, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse

"Caphcky,
its that kind of loser philosophy that leads teams like the cubs to have fans. It IS OUR RIGHT TO WIN!"


It is YOUR RIGHT to attempt to win....but championships are not a right. If they were, championships would be alot less meaningful and EVERYBODY would have one....LOL!


Posted by: caphcky | October 30, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

The United don't count, MLS is not a major league despite the name. The Caps are improving, but their fans are a bit over-hyped after barely winning the weakest division in hockey last year and then getting bounced in the first round, they'll contend for a championship when they get a real goaltender. The Wizards could contend if they ever get healthy. The Nats are heading in the wrong direction. So the team closest to bringing a title to DC is the Redskins, they are thin at too many positions, but with no dominant team, they've got a shot.

Posted by: PowerBoater69 | October 30, 2008 12:44 PM | Report abuse

This is complete BS. Baseball? The Montreal Expos were no better than an expansion team when they arrived in 2005 and they are going to count Washington as a four sport city that has had the longest drought?

Few if any teams that are essentially 3 years old are in position to win championships, no matter how well run.

The other item to take exception to is the NUMBER of titles some cities have won.

Sure, Atlanta won ONE championship, the 1995 World Series, but otherwise have been losers in all their spots for most of their histories.

Ditto for Phoenix that has the Diamondbacks 2001 World Series but nothing else to show for their sports heritage.

The sports capital in terms of winning has to be Boston right now. Red Sox won in 2004 and 2007, the Celtics won in 2007 to go with 15 previous championships, the Patriots won Super Bowls in 2001, 2003 and 2004. Only the Bruins haven't won a championshp recently, although they did win the Stanley Cup in 1970 and 1972.

Posted by: leopard09 | October 30, 2008 12:50 PM | Report abuse

The only way "the NHL's best player is dressed in Gold, Black, and White" is if Alex Ovechkin is wearing a Halloween costume with those colors.

Posted by: greggwiggins | October 30, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Why can't I vote for the Orioles? The Post has been insisting for years that they are a local team, haven't they?

Posted by: RayKingsGutFeeling | October 30, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

I remember the MD basketball title but the Mason final four run was bigger. 10 years from now people will still be comparing Ciderella teams to Mason. They are arguably the greatest underdog story in college basketball (which has a ton of underdog stories).

Posted by: DCman1 | October 30, 2008 1:37 PM | Report abuse

DC won't win another title until they realize that winning a championship is a privledge and a tangible achievement that must be achieved.

Its not a right that the city wins a championship......LOL

Posted by: caphcky | October 30, 2008 10:50 AM

no, dc will win a championship when it has the best/luckiest team in its respective sport. stop with the high school philosophy bs. the best/luckiest teams win titles, not the teams that have more respect for the privelege of winning a title.

that said, the caps might have the best, most obvious chance at a title. but the NFL is so level that the skins have as good a chance as anyone. i fear the wiz are not close, even with gil. the nats...please.

early season slump aside, anyone who thinks ovie is not the best player in the league is buying into the nhl promotion machine. guy scores 65 goals on a team that barely made the playoffs. does just about everything on the ice...please, no contest.

Posted by: dcsportsfan1 | October 30, 2008 1:47 PM | Report abuse

Sure, he does everything on the ice, has won personal trophies but has never guided his team beyond the first round of the playoffs.

Im not saying that I believe Crosby is the best player in the league, Im just saying that people outside of DC may base their opinion on more than how many goals he scored on a bad team.

Heck, you can make a case for Malkin being the best player in the league or even Jeff Carter
Jerome Iginla. But if you give all of N. America a vote between AO and SC, Crosby wins.

Posted by: rdy4all2000 | October 30, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

DC United won the US Open Cup this season

Posted by: Realness1 | October 30, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

The DC United shouldn't count because they can't be considered "World Champs". They may win the MLS cup but they would still be stomped by Man U or Real Madrid. The winners of the World Series, Superbowl, NBA Finals, Stanley Cup can all be considered the best pro sports teams in the world in their sport.

Posted by: DCman1 | October 30, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

The United doesn't count? Yeah, right. Did you know that 1 of the 12 major trophies they've won is the Inter-American Cup which made them the best team in the western hemisphere. They beat Brazilan powerhouse Vasco de Gama to win it. Ask fans of Boca juniors or River Plate if they'd like to have that trophy in their case.

Posted by: CHICO13 | October 30, 2008 2:13 PM | Report abuse

Chico13 - Even in the United's best year (which, to be honest, I have no idea when that was) could you reasonably make an argument that they were the best pro soccer team in the world? And, no, national teams don't count. I doubt it.

Posted by: DCman1 | October 30, 2008 2:18 PM | Report abuse

Ovechkin and Crosby have been in the league 3 years.

Ovechkin:
3 first team all-stars.

Crosby:
1 first team all-star


3 is more than 1.

Posted by: FlyersSuck | October 30, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

"Go ahead, take a national poll and anyone will say Crosby is better."

Funny, they took a poll of national writers and players last April, and they all indicated that Ovechkin was. It's why he won the Hart and Pearson Trophies.

Posted by: Zilla05 | October 30, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

In '98 they were the best team this side of the pond. After they beat Vasco de Gama Kevin Payne sent Real Madrid an email to see if they wanted to play and settle it. He never got a reply. Since then they played Chelsea, Tottenham, Real Madrid, Newcastle United, Boca Juniors, and about a dozen more international teams and either beat them or held their own. It's a pretty impressive resume' for a 12 year old club.

Posted by: CHICO13 | October 30, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

"stop with the high school philosophy bs. the best/luckiest teams win titles, not the teams that have more respect for the privelege of winning a title."

LOL, just analyzing my audience ma'em!
Good and lucky win eh?

That just solidifies my point about DC!

Posted by: caphcky | October 30, 2008 2:36 PM | Report abuse

How about Seattle up there for current most miserable sports team?

The Seahawks are on the way down and the Mariners almost beat the Nationals for worst team in baseball. As for basketball... the team was moved by opportunistic dirtbags.

Posted by: Joran | October 30, 2008 2:53 PM | Report abuse

The 2 teams in all of sports I care about most are DC United and the Washington Capitals. I don't have a preferred football team, I don't follow the NBA close enough to care about anyone in particular, and I don't follow baseball at all.

I'm saying this because I don't believe there's a "big four". It's a "big three". It's unfortunate (for me), but it's true. This country's best soccer league is not the best league in the world, and the NHL has to pay to get their games on TV (something even MLS has moved past). You can't call yourself equal to juggernauts like the NFL, NBA, and MLB if you aren't making money from TV and/or your salary cap is somewhere under $3 million per team.

So, if we're being honest and calling it a big three, I'd say the Redskins have the best chance (teams have to play 4 games max, which is less time to have your flaws exposed than the NBA and MLB playoffs) followed by the Wizards and the Nats. If we're going to include the Caps and United, I'd say United is most likely (also has short playoff system, but a higher percentage of teams in MLS get in) followed by the Redskins, the Caps, the Wizards, and the Nats.

Posted by: Chest_Rockwell | October 30, 2008 3:26 PM | Report abuse

The 'skins will defintely win a Super Bowl before first.

Keep in mind the last two times the Giants won the Super Bowl (1986 and 1990), who won the next Super Bowl? The Redskins (Doug Williams destroyed the Broncos in '87, and remember that Rypien guy in '91). So DC fans get ready, this is our year!

A lot of you are probably scoffing, but then again, a year ago did anyone think the Giants would win the Super Bowl? This is our time, get the champaign ready!!!

Posted by: jro1 | October 30, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Chico13 - I did not know all that and that is pretty impressive and the United and their fans should be proud of that but my point still remains. The NFL, NBA, MLB and NHL are the best leagues in their respective sports in the world. The MLS not so much.

Posted by: DCman1 | October 30, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

United beat Vasco (Brasil). Then Vasco played Real in the Intercontinental Cup in Japan. Real won 2-1 and DC bested Vasco. Guess that means we were the 2nd best club team in the World at that point in time (1998).

Posted by: Realness1 | October 30, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Totally agree. MLS in it's short existance has actually jumped into the Top 20 soccer leagues world wide. Maybe one day they'll crack the Top 10 but that's as close as they'll ever get. No way will they be able to compete with the gazillion dollar leagues in Europe. DC United aside I'd have to think the Skins have the best shot at winning it all here in the near future. They have a solid foundation on which to build.

Posted by: CHICO13 | October 30, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Could some other soccer fans chime in? Who here sincerley beleives that the DC United were the second best club team in the world in '98? I'm not a soccer fan so I have no idea but if that's true and a decent portion of soccer fans would agree with you then I take back everything I said.

Posted by: DCman1 | October 30, 2008 4:08 PM | Report abuse

I'm a huge DC United fan and can realistically say they were NOT the second best team in the world in '98. They were surely a Top 10 team in the world though. That team was awesome and of the likes which we'll probably never see in MLS again. They were almost unbeatable.

Posted by: CHICO13 | October 30, 2008 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Trophy's and results are what they are.

Posted by: Realness1 | October 30, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

dckwanzaa, the Capitals went to the Stanley Cup finals in 1998, not 1997, where they lost to the Sergei Fedorov's Red Wings in 4 straight. (That Red Wings team was the last to repeat as Cup champs, so I guess if you have to loose, at least they lost to a dynasty team)

That said, I'm sure the Caps will be DC's next major champion :)

Posted by: RedBirdie | October 31, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

That's what ticks me off about DCU's crappy season this year. If they had at least gotten through to the next round of the current CONCACAF Champions League, then my dream of having an all-DC Championship Year of 2009, where the Skins win the Superbowl, the Caps the Stanley Cup, the Wiz the NBA Finals, the Nats the World Series, and DCU wins the US Open Cup, Supporters Shield, MLS Cup, CONCACAF CL Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup would make 2009 one heckuva year, wouldn't it?

What's that, Mom? You mean the pill I just took wasn't ibuprofen? No wonder I haven't stopped giggling for the past hour... :-)

Posted by: Juan-John | October 31, 2008 9:43 PM | Report abuse

Caps were in the finals in 98, btw.

I'm sorry, if I recall correct, DC United has played and beaten teams from Europe, and didn't they draw Chelsea in a friendly?

And, frankly, if the Stanley Cup winner played the KHL winner using KHL rules, I'm not sure that the KHL team couldn't come out on top. I would make the same argument in basketball. The fact of the matter is, you can claim to be "World Champs" after winning the World Series and Super Bowl, and while there is truth to that, they never play anyone from out of the country. When was the last time an NFL team played a CFL team? A MLB team played a team from Japan? It's not too common, frankly, and NHL and MLS teams do it all the time, and it's sweeping into the NBA now.

Fact of the matter is, Caps are the most likely to win, as they've got about a 13 years window. Redskins always have a chance, because there's so much parity in the NFL. I don't follow the Wizards, because I think basketball is boring, so I can't comment about them. Nats are a mess, but they're building the right way.

And for not saying Crosby was the best player in hockey, you sure did come out and say it in your first post, rdy4all2004.

Posted by: Whitermage | November 1, 2008 10:49 AM | Report abuse

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