Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanza, we all should be thankful this holiday season. Many of you got the latest technology, vacations and even an ugly sweater or two, but the City of Philadelphia received a number of wonder gifts this season.
I think you know how this story goes by now. The New York Giants placed a beautifully wrapped present under this year’s tree. It came in the form of a 28 point comeback and the first punt return ever to end an NFL game. DeSean Jackson danced his way along the goal line, celebrating the holiday season and another bid to the postseason.
Quarterback Michael Vick raised his arm high into the sky, thankful for another chance that he has proven to be well deserved. He was the catalyst in the holiday gift for Eagles fans, as his performance in the fourth quarter was one of the most dominant in the history of the league. Best of all, head coach Andy Reid can celebrate his holiday knowing that his Eagles are the hottest and most feared team in football. They define the term relentless and proved that they can get out of any hole possible. I’m sure he is celebrating with a nice Christmas ham today.
The 32-year-old, 6-foot-3 lefty from Arkansas made his second appearance under the Christmas tree in Philadelphia. Cliff Lee stunned baseball two seasons ago after his dominance with the Phillies and is back for more in 2011. He delivered what may have been the best gift of the season for Philadelphians, solving any starting pitching questions heading into next year.
Something about this city brought him back. He was slapped in the face by the organization and shipped away after being one of the main reasons the Phillies made it to the World Series. However, a part of him never left and now he is back to prove why he denied the Yankees and Rangers. He wanted to be part of something great; something that he even coined the most dominant and most feared foursome in the history of baseball.
And the best part, he even allowed his city to save a few bucks for next season.
The 2009-2010 Philadelphia Flyers brought hockey back on par with football and baseball in the City of Brotherly Love. Even though they fell to the Blackhawks, they put together one of the most exciting post seasons in the history of the NHL. Now in 2010 and 2011, they are on a mission. They’ve battled injuries and a very tough division, but still have found a way to remain atop the NHL heading into the holiday season.
The orange and black have won seven out of the last nine games, including wins over the Penguins, Rangers, Bruins and Devils. Even though they will be without Pronger for the next month and a half, they are still one of the most feared teams in the league and one that is expected to make another run at Lord Stanley’s Cup next spring.
Certainly not the most exciting team in Philadelphia, but their young core might just make a push at the playoffs this season. As we have seen in the last decade, sub-500 teams tend to sneak in to the playoffs and the Sixers are no exception this season.
They are 6-5 in the month of December with all five losses coming against playoff teams. Despite their 11-18 record, they sit at ninth in the Eastern Conference, which is one spot out of the playoffs. Led by head coach Doug Collins, their young and aggressive style could enable them to make a run at the postseason.
Philadelphia has four teams that are all playoff contenders in their respective sports. There’s not much more you could ask for this holiday season (except maybe a championship). The Eagles are the hottest team in the NFC, the Phillies are only expected to maybe lose every fifth game this season, the Flyers smell another chance at the cup, and the Sixers are well on their way towards rebranding their old-school logo. It sure is nice to be a Philadelphia sports fan. Merry Christmas and Happy Holiday’s Philadelphia, we are well on our way to some more trophies in the near future.