If you’re a Phoenix sports fan, you know how rough life has been.
The Valley is home to teams in the big four professional sports, yet between the Phoenix Suns, Arizona Diamondbacks, Arizona Cardinals and Arizona Coyotes, there is just one championship.
And if not for the 2001 D-backs, perhaps Phoenix would be higher on the list. At any rate, according to the New York Times, Phoenix is the eighth-most cursed sports city in America.
Cleveland, Atlanta, Buffalo, San Diego, Washington, Minneapolis-St. Paul and Philadelphia make up the top seven.
Phoenix, like San Diego, is a Sun Belt city with a more tortured sports history than many people from other regions realize. Yes, the Diamondbacks won one of the great World Series, overcoming Mariano Rivera in the ninth inning of Game 7 in 2001. But heartbreak is otherwise the norm in Phoenix. The city’s teams have made the semifinals in their sport 13 times over the last half-century — and fallen short 12 of those 13 times.
The football Cardinals lost the 2009 Super Bowl after leading in the final minute. Charles Barkley could never overcome Michael Jordan. And Phoenix fans of a certain age will never forget the Suns’ triple-overtime loss to the Celtics in the 1976 finals, which has been called both the greatest and wildest N.B.A. finals game.
The Times notes there have been 55 seasons since Phoenix’s last title, and says the toughest loss was in Game 5 of the 1976 NBA Finals against the Boston Celtics.
We’re guessing they didn’t watch Super Bowl XLIII and probably missed most of the 1993 NBA Finals.
Regardless, there is no doubting that Phoenix sports fans have had a pretty rough go of things.
But hey, there’s always the next season.