Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sports/Decade Countdown: #7

We continue now with our #7 city/decade on our list of the top 10 cities and decades of the past 110 years. For an overview/explanation of the rankings, and the system used to get them, click here.

The list so far:
#10: Boston, 1970s
#9: Boston, 1980s
#8: Detroit, 1940s

Is a city truly great if one player has a decade for the record books? I mean, for people living there, watching a player dominate his league like Lance Armstrong in the late 1990s can be almost as exciting as the titles they bring. Knowing the player on your favorite team is beyond good, beyond great, feared by every opponent...well, that's quite the rush in itself. Not that I would know, I'm too jealous being busy of other cities with those kinds of athletic gods residing in their mists. On to decade #7, with one of the greatest men to ever lace up skates pulling his city onto the list...

7) Detroit, 1950s (Score: 254.96)—5 MVPs/6 Titles/10 Finals/23 Playoffs/51.1 W%

Howe played 25 years in Detroit
Detroit had such a good time during the 1940s that it decided to try again in the 1950s, and did just a little bit better. The problem here was that for a city with 4 teams playing full decades, they never really reached the finals or won during the regular season quite enough to be amongst the elite. All five MVP awards were won by Gordie Howe, certainly an impressive individual feat, and led his Red Wings to 3 titles of their own, the other three being won by the Lions. Yes, for those of my fellow younger readers, the Lions actually were good at points in their past. Howe (right) won back-to-back Hart Memorial Trophies twice, in the same decade, the only player in NHL history to do so (discounting Gretzky's 8-in-a-row streak in the 1980s).  The Pistons, in their first full decade, did little to really inspire greatness, as did (or should I say didn't) the Tigers, and the lack of star power on either team keeps this Detroit decade at number seven.

The Countdown Continues Here: #6

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