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Odds on D.C.'s next title team

Still fourth of four. (By Carolyn Kaster - AP)

When the Phillies won the 2008 World Series, giving Philadelphia its first championship in 25 years, D.C. moved right to the top of the list of most miserable all-sports cities. Washington is tied with Minneapolis/St. Paul for the longest title drought among NFL/NBA/NHL/MLB cities, although the Skins' last title came slightly more recently than the Twins'.

Right after that Phillies title, The Post ran a poll on which D.C. team would break the streak. The leading vote-getter, by far, was the Caps, who were coming off their seven-game playoff loss to the Flyers and were chosen by 48 percent of Post voters. The Redskins were an easy second choice (34 percent), followed by the Nats with 3 percent and the Wizards with 1 percent.

Two years later, someone got actual oddsmakers involved.'s Chad Millman asked Dave Staley from to calculate odds on which team would break the title droughts for a bunch of long-suffering cities, including D.C. is actually taking action on these odds. Millman's full post is here, but I've borrowed the relevant part about D.C., along with the oddsmakers' comments. The teams are ranked in the identical order voted by Post readers two years ago.

Capitals 5-6: "Based on being the NHL's best regular season team."
Redskins 9-5: "McNabb is poised to make this a playoff team for a couple seasons."
Nationals 5-1: "Strasburg changes this franchise."
Wizards 6-1: "Wall doesn't, at least not yet."

(Thanks to Reader Jon D. for the tip.)

By Dan Steinberg  |  June 21, 2010; 11:13 AM ET
Categories:  Caps , Nats , Redskins , Wizards  
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...and United is where on that list?

Posted by: cschetter | June 21, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

cschetter: The article states NFL/MLB/NBA/NHL. No MLS.

I still don't think one pitcher who pitches every 5th day will save a team that can't get out of it's own way. Steve Carlton won a ton of games one year but won almost 1/2 of the teams TOTAL wins that year.

McNabb won't do anything with a line full of journeyman and castoffs.

Posted by: Randy_Hawkins | June 21, 2010 11:49 AM | Report abuse

While I agree you need more than 1 Ace to win in the MLB, the fact is you don't need much more than 1.

You really need either 2 Aces or 1 Ace and a bunch of C+ pitchers.. along with a good bullpen.

Posted by: alex35332 | June 21, 2010 12:21 PM | Report abuse

...and United is where on that list?

Posted by: cschetter | June 21, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

If they were on it then they would be last. For the record I am not some spineless soccer basher as I am a DC United plan holder. They just have a long way to go right now despite their recent success.

Posted by: Gambrills4 | June 21, 2010 12:33 PM | Report abuse

McNabb won't do anything with a line full of journeyman and castoffs.

Posted by: Randy_Hawkins | June 21, 2010 11:49 AM | Report abuse

That may have been true of the OL a year ago but not now. Their OL has been significantly upgraded.

Posted by: Gambrills4 | June 21, 2010 12:36 PM | Report abuse

Trent Williams and Jammal Brown are not journeymen.

I don't know where some of you get your ideas about certain players.

Some of you still go on the basis that the OL is going to be poor in 2010 because it was poor in 2010.

Williams, Brown and Hicks are all going to be starters on this team, making 2/3 of the line composed of new acquisitions.

I would say that with the talent of Williams and Brown and the capability of Hicks to slide out and play OT in a pinch, the Redskins actually have some of the best OT depth in the NFC.

And let's not pretend that trading Jason Campbell for Donovan McNabb wasn't an upgrade.

I had my doubts about Shanahan grabbing McNabb when nothing else was in place, but seeing what this team has done in the past 3-4 months, it seems clear the offense is going to be much better.

And the offense has been the problem here since 2005.

Posted by: RoyHobbs4 | June 21, 2010 12:41 PM | Report abuse

@Gambrills: Recent success?? You aren't talking about the AC Milan game are you?;)
Truth be told I think your still wrong that they'd be last on the list if they'd been included. United could easily make the playoffs this season with the fixture congestion on the horizon for the clubs who had strong starts. If we can get more dudes back from injury we've got a shot.
Wiz and Nats aren't even close. Don't lose the faith!

Posted by: DadRyan | June 21, 2010 1:16 PM | Report abuse


Point well taken. Vamos United!

Posted by: Gambrills4 | June 21, 2010 1:53 PM | Report abuse

The United should be third on the list based on their playing in a weak league.

Posted by: PowerBoater69 | June 21, 2010 2:12 PM | Report abuse

Regardless of how terrible the Redskins have been, this thing has to lean NFL right off the bat.

5-1 seems generous for the Nats. Only 27.6% of MLB teams even make it to the postseason. Compare this to the NHL and NBA, where more than half of the teams make it to the playoffs.

37.5% of NFL teams move on to the second season, but it's single-elimination. A team with a little luck and a bit of momentum might stand a chance.

Caps and Wizards have better chances overall of making the playoffs in a vaccuum. Unfortunately, the Wizards may as well play in a vaccuum, because they truly suck. And I know they don't take personal curses into account when calculating odds, but the Caps just aren't going to win the Cup in my lifetime.

Posted by: JohninMpls | June 21, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

the Caps just aren't going to win the Cup in my lifetime.

Posted by: JohninMpls | June 21, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

I would like to take a bet on that. They will win the Cup at some point during Ovechkin's career. It is way too early in Ovechkin's career to call him as cursed as the franchise has been in the past. Besides, Backstrom is a franchise player too.

Posted by: Gambrills4 | June 21, 2010 3:11 PM | Report abuse

They may win in the next few years. But I will have been hit by a bus a few weeks beforehand.

I'm not saying he's cursed. I'm saying I'm cursed.

Posted by: JohninMpls | June 21, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

The Caps are building a franchise that has the potential to dominate this decade. I forecast multiple Cups and finals appearances. Franchises take a long time to build. 2008 was getting them into the playoffs. 2009 was learning what it's like to be a top team. 2010 was establishing an overwhelming offence (even with postseason humiliation). The Caps are going to turn themselves into a respected franchise. They may not win the Cup next year. But look for the Caps to have some fond years for us younger fans to look back on.

Posted by: j762 | June 21, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

It is the Caps and that is about it. Skins, Nats, and Wizards have zero shot in the forseeable future

Posted by: Bious | June 22, 2010 10:32 AM | Report abuse

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