America's Most Championship-Hungry Cities

Craig HortonCorrespondent IMarch 20, 2012

America's Most Championship-Hungry Cities

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    Every big city is famous for something.

    Some are famous for food, others for native celebrities and others for their history.

    There are others that are known for the success, or failure, of their professional sports teams.

    While places like Boston, New York or Los Angeles celebrate champions often, others haven't had a Victory Parade in decades.

    Here are some cities that haven't celebrated a championship in one of the four major American sports leagues in a long time.

Sacramento

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    The Kings have been in Sacramento since their 1985 move from Kansas City.

    In all those years, they have won only two division titles.

    Of their 10 playoff appearances, they have failed to advance beyond the first round six times.

    They have advanced to the Western Conference Finals only once, losing 4-3 to the Lakers in 2002.

    They have not been to the playoffs since 2006, and are currently 14th in the 15-team Western Conference.

Kansas City

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    The Royals overcame a 3-1 deficit to win the 1985 World Series 4-3 over the St. Louis Cardinals.

    Following a controversial Game 6 win, the Royals took the Series with an 11-0 rout in Game 7.

    It was the last championship for a Kansas City team, and the last playoff appearance for the Royals.

    As for the Chiefs, they haven't won a playoff game since 1993, and have gone one-and-done in their last six trips to the NFL playoffs.

Salt Lake City

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    The Jazz have been in Utah since 1979, and despite being a playoff team nearly every year, have yet to win an NBA title.

    A model of stability, the Jazz have only had four head coaches since moving from New Orleans.

    Jerry Sloan served as coach from 1988 until 2011.

    His teams made 19 postseason appearances, losing twice to Michael Jordan's Bulls in the Finals.

    Those teams were led by two-time MVP Karl Malone, who played in Utah for 18 seasons.

    They are currently a half-game out for the final Western Conference playoff spot.

Seattle

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    Seattle is famous for music and coffee, not championship teams.

    Their last champion was the now-departed SuperSonics, who won the NBA Finals in 1979.

    Since then moments of glory have been few and far between.

    The Sonics lost the Finals in 1996, the Seahawks lost to the Steelers in Super Bowl XL and the Mariners have never played in the World Series.

Portland

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    The TrailBlazers haven't won the NBA championship since the days of Bill Walton in 1977.

    Though they made 21 straight playoff appearances from 1983 until 2003, they got to the Finals just two times.

    They lost to the Detroit Pistons in 1990, and were the victims of Michael Jordan and the Bulls in 1992.

    Since then they have lost in the first round 12 times, including six consecutive appearances dating to 2001.

    Currently they are two-and-one-half games out of the last Western Conference playoff spot.

Milwaukee

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    For many years, the Green Bay Packers played some games in Milwaukee each year. That tradition stopped in 1994, so Milwaukee can't really lay claim to their last two Super Bowl wins.

    That leaves the Bucks as the last Milwaukee team to celebrate a championship, way back in 1971.

    That team was led by Lew Alcindor, who later changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar.

    Coincidentally, since trading him to the Lakers in 1975, the Bucks haven't been back to the NBA Finals.

    The Brewers, in town since 1970, have made the playoffs only three times, and lost their only World Series appearance to the St. Louis Cardinals in 1982.

     

Vancouver

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    The only Canadian city on the list, Vancouver has been home to the Canucks since 1970. They have never won the Stanley Cup.

    They lost the Cup Finals to the Boston Bruins in seven games in 2011.

    Vancouver was also home to the NBA's Grizzlies from 1995-2001.

    In six years they never made it to the playoffs, and their best record was 23-59.

    However, in the Canadian Football League, the Lions are the defending Grey Cup champions.

Buffalo

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    The Bills have the longest current postseason drought in the NFL. They haven't been to the playoffs since 1999. Their last championship was an AFL championship in 1965.

    Their claim to fame is that they lost four consecutive Super Bowls.

    The Sabres have been a part of the NHL since 1970. They haven't won a Stanley Cup yet.

    Buffalo was also the birthplace of perhaps the worst franchise ever in any league. The Los Angeles Clippers started as the Buffalo Braves in 1970.

    In eight years they won only one playoff series before moving to San Diego in 1978.

Cleveland

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    The Browns won the NFL Championship Game in 1964. That was the last championship of any Cleveland franchise.

    The Browns have never played in a Super Bowl.

    The Indians' last World Series win was in 1948, the second-longest drought in baseball.

    The Cavaliers have never won a championship. Their greatest player, hometown hero LeBron James, left for Miami in 2010.

    To add to Cleveland's miserable sports history, the old Cleveland Barons of the NHL were the last American sports franchise to fold.

    They merged with the Minnesota NorthStars in 1978.

San Diego

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    San Diego is home to a world-class zoo, beautiful beaches and great weather.

    The city also has the longest championship drought.

    The last team to raise a trophy in San Diego was the Chargers in 1963. They won the AFL Championship Game over the Boston Patriots 51-10.

    In the Super Bowl era, their only appearance in the Super Bowl was a 49-26 loss to San Francisco in Super Bowl XXIX.

    The Padres have been around since 1969, but have never won a World Series.

    They lost the World Series 4-1 to Detroit in 1984, and to the Yankees, in a sweep, in 1998.

    The Clippers also called San Diego home from 1978-1984.

    They never finished higher than fifth, never appeared in the playoffs, and only had one winning season.