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Boston: City of Champions- the Decades of Dominance

Updated on September 2, 2019

Boston You're My Home


Boston Strongest

I have had to update this article almost yearly since I first wrote it in 2013. I have added additional sections to include the most recent Boston victories.

The New England Patriots won their sixth Super Bowl in 2019. While that is impressive on its own, the rest of the teams have truly made Boston a city of Champions. Since I first wrote this article six years ago, Boston teams have appeared in six more championships, winning four of them. The Red Sox, along with the Boston Celtics, Boston Bruins, and New England Patriots, have each contributed to the amassing of the twelve titles since the turn of the century. During that time, at least one Boston team has made the playoffs every single year, and Boston was represented in at least the semi final (AL Championship Series, AFC Championship, Eastern Conference Finals) every year except for 2009, with 18 total Championship appearances (Super Bowl, World Series, Stanley Cup, NBA Finals). Of those 18 appearances, Boston has won it all 12 times. That’s one city, four teams, and twelve championships. Let’s put that in perspective.

The Patriots began the winning in 2002, when the emergence of Tom Brady catapulted New England to the front of the sporting world. The Patriots would go on to win the Super Bowl again in 2004. The Boston Red Sox finally reversed the 86 year curse that same year, after coming back from three games down against the New York Yankees, to go on and sweep the St. Louis Cardinals in the World Series. The New England Patriots won the Super Bowl again in 2005, with the everlasting Adam Vinatieri kick deep rooted into Boston lore. This is also the last time any NFL team has won back to back. The Red Sox returned in 2007, to reassure their fans there would be no 86 year drought to suffer through this time around, and swept the Colorado Rockies in the World Series. The unrelenting victory of Boston would continue, and the Boston Celtics beat the Lakers to return the storied franchise to glory in 2008. There was only one team left in the city of Boston that needed to claim victory, and the Boston Bruins defeated the Vancouver Canucks in 2011 to take home their first Stanley Cup in thirty-eight years. The Red Sox 2013 World Series victory added to the development of a city that is used to winning, and now the New England Patriots are piling it on again, with another three titles in the past four years. Plus, the Sox have added another one as well.

When taking a look at other major cities and sports teams since the turn of the century, what Boston has done is truly astonishing. Take a look how far above the rest of the world Boston ranks.

World Champions

Los Angeles Lakers
Anaheim Angels
Detroit Red Wings
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
San Antonio Spurs
Florida Marlins
New Jersey Devils
Detroit Pistons
Tamba Bay Lightning
San Antonio Spurs
Chicago White Sox
*season cancelled*
Pittsburgh Steelers
Miami Heat
St. Louis Cardinals
Carolina Hurricanes
Indianapolis Colts
San Antonio Spurs
Anaheim Ducks
New York Giants
Philadelphia Phillies
Detroit Red Wings
Pittsburgh Steelers
Los Angeles Lakers
New York Yankees
Pittsburgh Penguins
New Orleans Saints
Los Angeles Lakers
San Francisco Giants
Green Bay Packers
Dallas Mavericks
St. Louis Cardinals
New York Giants
Miami Heat
San Francisco Giants
Los Angeles Kings
Baltimore Ravens
Miami Heat
Chicago Blackhawks
Seattle Seahawks
San Antonio Spurs
San Francisco Giants
Los Angeles Kings
Golden State Warriors
Kansas City Royals
Chicago Blackhawks
Denver Broncos
Cleveland Cavaliers
Chicago Cubs
Pittsburgh Penguins
Golden State Warriors
Houston Astros
Pittsburgh Penguins
Philadelphia Eagles
Golden State Warriors
Washington Capitals
Toronto Raptors
St Louis Blues

* All titles reflect year Championship Game was played

New York City


New York, New York

Let’s go ahead and just get the world’s most popular city out of the way. We can even include New Jersey in this discussion, since their sports teams don’t seem to know the difference anyway. The city of New York, with its nine different professional sports teams, across four sports, have managed four championships this century. New York has always been a baseball town, with the incredible success of the New York Yankees amassing enough championships early on to cover the current failure. Since the turn of the century, the Yankees have won the World Series once, in 2009. The New York Mets have not even come close. New York takes pride in basketball, with the iconic Madison Square Garden providing a home for the New York Knicks. The Nets made a recent move to Brooklyn, hoping to transform the dismal New Jersey Franchise, which hasn’t contributed anything in the way of success. The New York Giants have been the most recent reason for New York fans to celebrate, beating the heavily favored New England Patriots, not once, but twice, to claim the Super Bowl victory in 2008 and 2012. The New York Jets are barely worth mentioning. The New York/ New Jersey duo brings a trio of teams to the NHL, with the New York Rangers, New York Islanders, and New Jersey Devils, but only the Devils have brought any victory to New York, back in 2003. So the Big Apple, with all its money, and superstars, and pride, has only managed four championships from its nine teams. Evidently, despite the power and popularity of New York and their sports, this is a city that cannot compete with Boston.

New York: 9 Teams, 4 Championships

Champions Again!
Champions Again! | Source

Interception at the Goal Line!

It was deja vu. The Patriots were back in Arizona, back in the Super Bowl, and there was another miraculous catch supplied by the football gods to hand Tom Brady and Bill Belichick their third straight Super Bowl loss. The catch was going to do more than decide the outcome of the game, it was going to define a legacy. A New England franchise that has dominated the NFL was up against more "gate" scandals, and this time it was certain, the world would forever doubt the legacy of Brady and Belichick.

I stood dumbfounded. It had been an incredible game, and it was all going to unravel, and come crashing down in the final minute and half of Super Bowl XLIX. The Seattle Seahawks had "Beast Mode", and Marshawn Lynch was going to beat it into the end zone to give Seattle the lead. I began to rationalize losing, still meanwhile hoping Brady had one more killer drive in him to get into field goal range. I began thinking maybe New England should let Marshawn Lynch just walk in for a score, rather than eat up any more valuable clock. I began thinking I had somehow disrupted the time space continuum and was reliving the horrors of 2007. My mind was racing with the possibilities, but I was faced with the harsh realization that the Patriots were going to lose another Super Bowl.

Then it happened...

And just like when Dave Roberts stole second, or when Paul Pierce dove to the floor for the ball to give the Celtics possession, or when Vinatari kicked through a wall of snow, or when David Ortiz did what only a bad man like that can do...


My heart stopped. I was waiting for a flag, I was waiting for him to drop it, I was waiting for something to go wrong, but it didn't. The Seahawks had turned the ball over at the one yard line, and there was nothing that was going to interfere with a Patriots victory now. Seattle finished the game in a disgraceful fashion, resorting to fighting when it became clear they could not beat the Patriots any other way. The Seahawks were lucky to even be at the 1 yard line to begin with. Sure luck is a part of sports, but Seattle's luck just ran out.

The Patriots had won. Tom Brady earned MVP with the most incredible 4th quarter play of any quarterback in any Super Bowl, ever. The interception made it all possible. Malcolm Butler read the play perfectly and positioned himself for the biggest play of his life, a game saving interception to grant the Patriots their fourth Super Bowl victory since the turn of the century.


At this point, the only thing Detroit can brag about is Eminem, and even his reign has come to an end. The Motor City has experienced some serious sports tragedy, including a Detroit Lions team that has been record breaking terrible, including going 0-16 in 2008. Detroit is the only other city included with only four professional sports teams. The Detroit Tigers have been a regular heart break, losing the World Series twice in the past decade. The dominant Detroit Pistons of the past have showed glimmers of hope, including an NBA Finals victory in 2004, but there are no real signs of a return. The Detroit Red Wings have been the pride of the city, bringing two championships in 2002, and 2008.

Detroit: 4 Teams, 3 Championships

The Windy City

The great city of Chicago will forever be remembered for the six titles Michael Jordan brought there during the 1990’s. His dominance in the NBA, and establishment as a champion, left Chicago with an icon that surpasses the sport. Since Jordan's departure however, the five teams that compromise Chicago, have only returned the city to glory five times. A memorable victory came in 2005, when the Chicago White Sox ended the curse of the 1919 Black Sox. The Chicago Blackhawks defeated Boston in the 2013 Stanley Cup Finals, and claimed titles in 2010 and 2015 as well. The Chicago Bulls have been regular contenders, but have not made it to the Finals since the departure of Michael Jordan. The Chicago Bears have been a continual disappointment, including a crushing 2006 Super Bowl loss to the Indianapolis Colts. The Chicago Cubs have finally won the World Series!

Chicago: 5 teams, 5 Championships


Boston's Best

Which MVP Performance Was The Most Impressive?

See results

What If We Combine Two Cities? PHI/PIT

The City of Brotherly love has no chance of competing on its own, so Pittsburgh will have to join the ranks for a state wide championship tally. Pennsylvania is host to both Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, both of which boast storied sports franchises. The Pittsburgh Steelers have delivered an impressive performance this decade, with three Super Bowl appearances, earning the Vince Lombardi trophy in 2006 and again in 2009, but losing to the Green Bay Packers in 2011. Pittsburgh is home of another team that won a few titles this century, when the Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup in 2009, and back-to-back in 2016-17. The Philadelphia Phillies claimed a World Series victory in 2008. Of course every Boston fan can’t forget the devastating loss to the Philadelphia Eagles in 2018. The Pittsburgh/ Philadelphia combination brings a total of seven teams looking to compete every year, but the Pittsburgh Pirates, Philadelphia 76ers, and Philadelphia Flyers have failed to seal a victory.

Philly/Pittsburgh: 7 Teams, 7 Championships


The Lone Star State

It is becoming clear that no single city can be mentioned in the same sentence as Boston, when it comes to constant success, but perhaps a big enough state can have what it takes. Texas is host to eight professional sports teams, and has managed to win only six championships this century. The San Antonio Spurs are responsible for four of them, winning the NBA Finals in 2003, 2005, 2007, and 2014, representing a franchise of continued success. The other Texas victories came at the hands of the Dallas Mavericks in 2011, as well as the Houston Astros in 2017. The Houston Rockets represent the third NBA team in Texas, but has not had anything to offer in the way of winning. With all six of Texas’ championships already accounted for, this leaves the Texas Rangers, Dallas Stars, Houston Texans, and of course, the Dallas Cowboys, all winless this century.

Texas: 8 Teams, 6 Championships



No Debate

The debate is over. Whatever argument was left against Tom Brady and Bill Belichick no longer exists. Six rings. The New England Patriots have given new meaning to the term GOAT. The greatest quarterback of all time. The greatest coach of all time. The greatest franchise in NFL history. And there isn’t even a close second in any of those categories. It is one thing to dominate, it is a completely different thing to destroy. Since 2001 the Patriots have been to 13 AFC Championship games, including 8 in a row (and counting). Let’s put this in perspective, Tom Brady has been to the Super Bowl 9 times in his 19 year career. Steph Curry has a .436 career 3-point percentage. Which means that Tom Brady has a better chance of making the Super Bowl than Steph Curry does of making a three. W-O-W.

"Back to Foulke!"

The Sunshine State

The Miami Heat (and more specifically LeBron James) are the only reason Florida gets a mention when discussing championship cities, or states as the case may be. Florida brings ten professional sports teams to the table every season, and those teams have accounted for six championships. The newly founded Miami Marlins, stunned the New York Yankees in 2003, as the Florida Marlins, when they won the World Series. The Tampa Bay Buccaneers won the Super Bowl that same year. A Tampa Bay Lightning Stanley Cup win in 2004, accounts for another championship victory. LeBron James and the Miami Heat are responsible for the most recent success. The Heat also won the Larry O’Brien trophy in 2006, with Dwayne Wade as the MVP. The remaining six teams, the Tampa Bay Rays, Orlando Magic, Jacksonville Jaguars, Miami Dolphins, and Florida Panthers, have failed to contribute.

Florida: 10 Teams, 5 Championships


The City of Angels Can't Compete With The City Of Champions On Its Own...

California is a massive state, with quite a few major cities. Los Angeles represents a majority of the victories the state has experienced, although Golden State has since added to the ring count. A diverse selection of professional sports teams compromise the massive landscape however, and we will look at all the contributions. There are fifteen professional sports teams in California, including five baseball teams. These five teams have managed as many World Series titles as one team in Boston. The Anaheim Angels and San Francisco Giants have both contributed with victories this century, with the Angels winning in 2002, and the Giants winning in 2010, 2012, and 2014, while the Los Angeles Dodgers, Oakland Athletics, and San Diego Padres, have come up short year after year. California is host to three football teams, the San Diego Chargers (now LA), Oakland Raiders, and San Francisco 49’ers, none of which have won a Super Bowl this century, while the Patriots have already won six. The Los Angeles Lakers have won four titles since 2001, with Kobe Bryant, and Shaquille O'Neal each doing their fair share. With the Lakers as the only real bright spot in L.A., the other teams in California basketball have represented some of the worst franchises in sports, with the Golden State Warriors, Sacramento Kings, and Los Angeles Clippers doing everything but winning. It is worth noting that the Warriors have become the best team in basketball, and have since won three titles. Two of their three hockey teams have won a championships. The Los Angeles Kings hoisted Lord Stanley’s Cup back in 2012 and 2014, and again in with the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim contributing further back, in 2007, while the San Jose Sharks have remained on the outside looking in.

All of California: 15 teams, 13 wins

So finally, we found a state combination of enough cities to surpass what Boston has done. No real sports fan could ever compare an entire state to one city however, especially given the comparison of more than double the amount of teams it took to achieve similar success. The verdict is clear, Boston is the City of Champions

The Heartbreak

Which Loss Was The Most Devastating?

See results

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