Power Ranking Philadelphia's Top 25 Greatest Championship Teams Ever
Philadelphia is known, in modern times anyway, as a city of championship frustration.
The Philadelphia Phillies won a championship in 2008, but the trips to the championship rounds in the various team sports have been few and far between in recent years, and each of the local major teams has lost in their most recent trip to their sport's final round: the Super Bowl, NBA Finals, Stanley Cup Finals and World Series.
Nevertheless, Philadelphia actually has a rich championship tradition, as we explore here in the Top 25 Philadelphia Championship Teams.
Honorable Mention: 2002, 2007 Philadelphia KiXX
Philadelphia's indoor soccer team, the Kixx, compete in the Major Indoor Soccer League. They won the MISL championship in 2002 and 2007.
Honorable Mention: 1989, 1990, 1994, 1995, 1998, 2001 Philadelphia Wings
As far as major professional lacrosse goes, the Philadelphia Wings are the New York Yankees of the sport.
The Philadelphia Wings were one of the original four teams in the Eagle Pro Box Lacrosse League that began play in 1987, and they are the only team that can trace its roots back to the original 1974-1975 National Lacrosse League.
The Wings have won six championships in the various incarnations of the National Lacrosse League.
25. 2001 Philadelphia Liberty Belles
The Liberty Belles played in the National Women's Football Association and Independent Women's Football League from 2001-2004 and won the NWFA's inaugural 2001 championship, which at a point when Philadelphia was starved for a championship, was enough to get us through.
24. 2008 Philadelphia Soul
In 2008, in their fifth season of competition in the Arena Football League, the Philadelphia Soul won. They won ArenaBowl XXII in New Orleans on July 27, 2008 against the defending champion San Jose SaberCats.
23. 1949 Philadelphia Eagles
The Philadelphia Eagles knocked off the Los Angeles Rams in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for their second straight NFL championship.
Ironically, the Eagles faced off against Rams quarterback Norm Van Brocklin, who would lead the Eagles to their final championship in 1960.
22. 1926 Philadelphia Quakers
In the only season of the old American Football League, the Philadelphia Quakers won the only AFL championship, in 1926, the same year the Frankford Yellow Jackets won the NFL championship.
21. 1966 Philadelphia Bulldogs
The Philadelphia Bulldogs were a Continental Football League team which played at Temple Stadium. On December 9, 1966, they beat the Orlando Panthers 20-17 before a crowd of just under 6,000 at Temple Stadium.
The team disbanded six months later.
20. 1984 Philadelphia Stars
In the 1984 USFL season, the Philadelphia Stars went 16-2 and easily trounced the Arizona Wranglers 23-3 for the league title.
19. 1946-1947 Philadelphia Warriors
In the first ever NBA season (then known as the BAA), Joe Fulks (23 ppg) led the Philadelphia Warriors to the championship over Max Zaslofsky and Chick Halbert's Chicago Stags.
18. 1910 Philadelphia Athletics
The Phillies did not have much success for the first seven decades of the 20th century, but the Philadelphia Athletics had several great teams.
17. 1911 Philadelphia Athletics
In 1911, the Philadelphia Athletics won their second straight World Series, and the first Philadelphia dynasty was born.
16. 1913 Philadelphia Athletics
The 1913 Philadelphia Athletics won their third World Series in four years on the strength of Hall of Famers Eddie Collins, Eddie Plank and Home Run Baker.
15. 1924 University of Pennsylvania Quakers
In 1924, the University of Pennsylvania won the NCAA football championship.
Those words do not even make sense in the same sentence together.
14. 1954 LaSalle Explorers
In the 1954 NCAA tournament, Penn State and LaSalle both made it to the Final Four. LaSalle knocked off Penn State for the privilege of facing off against Bradley, whom LaSalle beat by 16, 92-76.
The following year, LaSalle would lose to a University of San Francisco team that featured both K.C. Jones and Bill Russell.
13. 1955-1956 Philadelphia Warriors
Two years after Tom Gola helped lead LaSalle to the NCAA championship, he was on the Philadelphia Warriors championship team of 1955-1956, along with Paul Arizin, Neil Johnston and Joe Graboski.
12. 1948 Philadelphia Eagles
The Philadelphia Eagles scored 40 or more points in three of their final five games of the 1948 football season, but in a snowy and windy Franklin Field, one touchdown was enough, as the Eagles topped the Chicago Bears 7-0 on the strength of Steven Van Buren's rushing, and not much else.
11. 1966-1967 Philadelphia 76ers
The 1967 Philadelphia 76ers were the only team other than the Boston Celtics to win an NBA championship between 1959 and 1969.
They did it against Philadelphia's former NBA team, the Warriors, now of San Francisco.
10. 1930 Philadelphia Athletics
For the second year in a row, the Philadelphia Athletics won the World Series, this time besting the St. Louis Cardinals in six games. Between them, pitchers George Earnshaw and Lefty Grove appeared in five of the six games.
9. 1926 Frankford Yellow Jackets
Professional sports in the old days were kind of odd. How else do we explain the fact that the 1926 NFL championship was won by the Frankford Yellow Jackets?
Philadelphia is a city of neighborhoods, it is true, and in 1926, a neighborhood won a championship.
8. 1960 Philadelphia Eagles
The last (or should we say, most recent) NFL championship for the Philadelphia Eagles. It was pre-Super Bowl and pre-Vet, which means it may as well have been pre-history.
7. 1973-1974 Philadelphia Flyers
The Philadelphia Flyers solidified their place in NHL history as the Broad Street Bullies won their second straight Stanley Cup.
6. 1980 Philadelphia Phillies
After nearly 100 years of play, the Philadelphia Phillies finally won their first World Series in 1980.
In a year in which all four major professional Philadelphia sports franchises made it to the championship rounds of their respective sports, the Phillies were the only ones that prevailed.
5. 1929 Philadelphia Athletics
One year after the Philadelphia Athletics featured eight future Hall of Famers, the A's won 104 games and went back to the World Series for the first time since 1914.
4. 1985 Villanova Wildcats
The Villanova Wildcats entered the 1985 NCAA tournament as the eighth seed in the Southeast Region, but Rollie Massimino's team stormed through 9th seeded Dayton, top-seeded Michigan, 5th seeded Maryland, and then 2nd seeded North Carolina to get to the Final Four.
In the Final Four, the Wildcats easily dispatched the Memphis State 52-45 to meet up with Patrick Ewing and the mighty Georgetown Hoyas. The Wildcats shot an amazing 78.6 percent of their shots in the championship, in what has been called both the greatest shooting performance and the greatest upset of all time.
3. 2008 Philadelphia Phillies
For the first time since they started building tall buildings behind City Hall, the Curse of Billy Penn was broken and the city of Philadelphia tasted its first championship glory in over 100 major professional sports league seasons.
2. 1972-1973 Philadelphia Flyers
Just five seasons after the 1967 NHL expansion, the Philadelphia Flyers became the first expansion team to win the Stanley Cup, knocking off the 1972 Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins.
1. 1982-1983 Philadelphia 76ers
The Fo-Fo-Fo team. After three trips to the NBA Finals in six years, and after three losses, the 76ers acquiring the missing piece to the puzzle: Moses Malone.
After dominating the league to the tune of a 65-17 record, the Sixers blew through the playoffs on a 12-1 run and swept the Magic and Kareem Lakers in four games.