Sports’ Most Redundant Franchises

The recently concluded Grizzlies-Clippers playoff series, featured two teams that have changed their fate of late. The Clippers went from “lovable losers” to an exciting team that’s fun to watch, While the Grizzlies, in a way, have made an even more dramatic turn (despite coming up short). They went from being “that team which moved from Canada and now has a nickname totally out of touch with its new location” to a legitimate threat in the west. It did get me thinking, though, which are sport’s most useless and forgettable teams. There isn’t a strict formula for coming up with this list but going in to it, I think it’ll be a mix of recent wows and a lackluster history.
So here is my (elitist, possibly offensive to some) list of sports’ most redundant franchises. Apologies in advance.

1. Kansas City Royals – You know you’re in trouble when the only thing most people remember about your team is a guy running like a mad man out of the dugout due to pine tar. Okay, so at least they did win a title once, so some of their history was decent. But that was 27 years ago. Since then, they’ve basically been a farm team for big market clubs.

Bottom line: whenever I need to list all MLB teams for one reason or another, I seem to come up 1 short of naming them all. The one that usually slips my mind? You guessed it – the KC Royals.

2. Jacksonville Jaguars – Can’t get people in the stands, can’t (or don’t want to) land guys who might actually give them a chance of doing so. Haven’t won a super bowl, and Wikipedia tells me they were in the playoffs five years ago, but I honestly have no recollection of that. I guess it was forgettable. 

Bottom line: I know a lot of NFL fans who root for a variety of teams. Never heard anyone say “oh, I’m a Jags fan!”. Have you? 

3. New Orleans Hornets – When I hear the name “Hornets” my mind goes to 1992 and Larry Johnson’s “Grandmama” ads. That’s their lasting legacy.  A shoe commercial. When they were in a different city. With a player who never really lived up to his potential and hype. Okay, so they had Chris Paul for a while and we have heard about them a lot, since they were owned by the NBA then sold to Tom Benson, yada, yada. Honestly? I don’t think anyone cares that much.

Bottom line: I say move them back to Charlotte and merge them with the Bobcats, keeping the Hornets name.

4. Charlotte Bobcats – also a team “in the news” due to their futility and all out terribleness. But still, should this team really exist, just for the sake of their owner? And yes, they have a good chance of getting Anthony Davis in the draft. I don’t think it’ll help and I hope, for his sake, that the ping pong balls will bounce in a crazy way that gets him out of Charlotte. If they don’t, I don’t like his chances of doing well in this league. I think the Bobcats’ motto should be ‘Where Promising Big Man Careers Come to Die’.

Bottom line: see #3

5. Practically every NHL team that has come to existence or relocated after 1995. Yea, I know, two of these teams just played in the Western Conference semis, but hockey in Phoenix? in Nashville? really?  And what’s this deal with moving teams out of places and a few years later moving or creating new franchises in the old places? I don’t get the NHL, I really don’t. I don’t think people are watching anyway…

Bottom line: The Atlanta Thrashers are the Winnipeg Jets who are the Phoenix Coyotes. 

That’s that. The only thing left to see is what kind of curse this post will bring upon my favorite and very un-redundant teams… 

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‘Where Promising Big Man Careers Come to Die’ Emeka Okafor in a Bobcats uniform. Then he went to the Hornets… [Photo: Keith Allison via Flickr]