Sunday, December 6, 2009

Greatest 'Organizations' of the Last Decade

Below is my list of the top organizations of the last decade. By "organizations", I mean the best pro sports teams (MLB, NFL, NBA, NHL), college teams (hoops and football) and the individual sports (NASCAR, golf, tennis). These are the people who dominated the decade and won a title or two.

Why rank from 1 to 17? Because I want to, that's why!

17-NEW JERSEY DEVILS. The Devils won two Stanley Cups and went to another Finals. They've been a model of consistency with five Atlantic Division titles and at least 99 points in all but one season.

16-NORTH CAROLINA TAR HEELS (basketball). The Heels hoops team won two National Championships and went to four Final Fours. The Matt Doherty era knocks them down the list a bit, but Roy Williams has turned the program back into the premier organization in college hoops. Their 2009 title was one of the most dominant ever while their 2000 Final Four run was the most improbable.

15-FLORIDA GATORS (football). Like the Tar Heels, the Gators have taken a tough patch and turned it into the model program at the end of the decade. Florida won two of the last three BCS Championships and had five seasons with at least 10 wins. The Ron Zook era kept the program afloat but the mediocrity pulls them down a bit.

14-PITTSBURGH STEELERS. The Steel Curtain reinforced their will during the second half of the decade. The Steelers won two Super Bowls and had just one losing season. They became the first franchise with six Super Bowl titles and first franchise to win four playoff games away from home in the same postseason.

13-USC TROJANS (football). USC won two championships, one split, and seven Pac-10 titles. From 2002 to 2008, the Trojans went 82-9. The had three Heisman Trophy winners (Carson Palmer, Matt Leinart, Reggie Bush) and stocked the NFL with many players. Yes, they fell off a bit this year and the beginning of the decade was horrendous, but no other college team was this dominant.

12-DETROIT RED WINGS. It feels like the Wings should have won more than the two Stanley Cups they did win during the decade, but that just shows their dominance. Detroit won their division in eight of the nine seasons played during the decade (the 2004-2005 season was cancelled due to a lockout). The won four Presidents Trophies for the best regular season mark and recorded at least 108 points in every season. Their postseason failures push them down on the list.

11-SAN ANTONIO SPURS. The Spurs won three titles in a five year stretch, won at least 53 games in each season and won at least one playoff series in all but one year. Of the seven years they didn't win the title they were eliminated by the NBA's top team of the decade, the LA Lakers.

10-BOSTON RED SOX. The Red Sox ended their 86-year drought and finally won a World Series. They liked it so much, they waited just three seasons before doing it again. They went to the playoffs six times and became the first MLB team to come back from an 3-0 deficit to win a playoff series.

9-JIMMIE JOHNSON. Johnson, as you may have heard, has won four consecutive NASCAR championships. In his nine years in the Sprint Cup series, Johnson has four titles, two second place finishes and two fifth place finishes. He won 47 races and had 180 top ten finishes.

8-NEW YORK YANKEES. The Bronx Bombers bookended the decade with World Series titles. They won eight of the 10 AL East titles during the decade (the same division that houses Boston), went to four Fall Classics and missed the playoffs just once. They won at least 100 games in four seasons. The Yanks worst record was 87-74 ... their championship season of 2000.

7-ROGER FEDERER. Federer won 15 Grand Slam titles during the decade, including five consecutive Wimbledon titles and five consecutive US Open titles. Three times he won three of the four Slam events and this year's French Open victory recorded the career Slam.

6-LOS ANGELES LAKERS. The Lakers won four NBA Championship this decade, including the lone consecutive streak of the 00's (their threepeat from 2000-2002) and went to another two Finals. Despite breaking up the franchise after their disappointing 2004 Finals appearance, the Lakers got back to the top of the mountain at the end of the decade. They are also the only franchise to have two different MVPs during the 2000s.

5-MICHAEL PHELPS. Phelps has a record 14 Olympic gold medals won and 16 total medals in just two Summer games. He currently owns six world records (he set records 37 times) and may be the biggest freak of nature in the human race.

4-NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS. Ten years ago, you would have never saw this coming. Three Super Bowl championships in four years. A fourth Super Bowl appearance and the only 16-0 regular season in history. The Pats were 109-36 during the past decade ... and that includes a 5-11 mark to begin it all.

3-LANCE ARMSTRONG. He won the first six Tours de France during the decade. The fact that he took three years off and then finished third in the 2009 Tour was nearly as amazing. The top item on Armstrong's resume is his foundation that supports people who are affected by cancer.

2-UCONN HUSKIES (women's basketball). What a decade. Five NCAA championships and two undefeated seasons. Check this out: the Huskies were 339-28 during the decade. Wow! They went to the Elite Eight nine times and the Final Four seven times.

1-TIGER WOODS. Okay, the very last part of this decade hasn't gone smoothly for Mr. Woods, but no one dominated their sport like Tiger. He won 12 majors during the decade, won Player of the Year award in eight years and was the top winner nine times (including when he missed half the season). Oh, he also won 56 events and became a gazillionaire.

1 comment:

Mike Briggs said...

This list is real good, the only thing I would've changed was phelps at 5, he's gotta be at least in the top 3.