Sunday, November 10, 2013

The Top 5 Current Dynasties in Sports

After seeing the dismantling of LSU on Saturday by a score of 38-17, Alabama remains the undisputed number one ranked college football team in the country.  They have carried over their form from game to game and year to year for a good while now.

It is rare for a college football team to display the dominance that Alabama has shown for such a sustained period of time.  Saturday night's showing epitomizes the machine they are.  It is obvious they are a dynasty, but where do they rank among other sports dynasties?

As dynasties go, it is usually the definition that gets sports fans hung up.  For me, I am looking at the trophies and consistent performances from year to year.  Also, I consider individual performance to count equally as team performance.

The University of Connecticut women's basketball team deserves consideration for this list as they have strung together many championships over the years.  When his career is over, Geno Auriemma will go down in American history as one of the greatest coaches of all time.  Maya Moore, Diana Taurasi, Sue Bird, Tina Charles and Swin Cash were instrumental in many of the recent championships. UCONN is undefeated in NCAA Finals, appearing in seven out of the last fourteen Finals (including three out of the last five).

I'm keeping UCONN off the list of 'current' dynasties because they have won only one of the last three championships.

I'm also keeping the LA Galaxy off the list.  The Galaxy from MLS would have had a chance for the list if they could have kept themselves alive in this year's playoffs.  Unfortunately for Galaxy fans, they lost their home and home aggregate series to Real Salt Lake and will be searching for a new spark for next season.  They had won the last two MLS Cups.

I'm starting my top five list at number five with Serena Williams.  Serena's whole career could be called a dynasty.  She's had several parts of her career where she was winning consecutive majors. But, right now, as one of the oldest women on tour, she's on a roll having won four out of the last six majors.

2012 and 2013 were completely dominated by Serena and sometimes she is winning with ease.  She won her quarterfinals match at the 2013 U.S. Open with a double bagel (6-0, 6-0).

At number four, I'm putting another tennis player, Rafael Nadal.  Nadal's French Open run is unbelievable, winning eight of the last nine titles.  Even more amazing, not one of the Finals had to go five sets.

He has thoroughly dominated the red clay of Roland Garros.  He beat Roger Federer in four of those eight Finals and he beat Novak Djokovic in one of them.  Nadal is now considered one of the greatest of all time tennis players.

At number three, is another great of all time in the sport of track and field.  Usain Bolt gets the nod for his consecutive wins in the 100 and 200 meter sprints at the Olympics.  Bolt is going for a third 100 and 200 win in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil for the Summer Olympics of 2016 after having won in Beijing, China in 2008 and London, England in 2012.

Bolt is the fastest man alive and fastest man ever.

At number two, the Miami Heat are showing how a team grows from defeat.  They have the Dallas Mavericks to thank.  They were humbled and lost to the Mavs in the 2011 NBA Finals.  They have been able to come back and win two consecutive championships, overcoming difficult challenges from the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2012 and a miraculous series against the San Antonio Spurs in 2013.

With most of the roster intact, including Hall Of Fame players-LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, the Heat are looking for a fourth consecutive Finals appearance this season and third straight championship.

This leaves the University of Alabama football team at number one.  There was no 60 Minutes Tv show jinx this week after highlighting the coaching exploits of Nick Saban.  Bama has won three out of the last four championships and are going for four out of five and three in a row if they win it all this season.

Bama and the Heat have made their respective sports more interesting.  When a team dominates like they are doing, there is a consensus top achiever that all sports fans appreciate or as Mark Cuban said recently, "Hating the Heat is good for the game."  Bama and the Heat are the bad guys of the game for winning so often.

Tv ratings go up around dynasties and girlfriends of college quarterbacks become household names. Just ask Katherine Webb how her career is going.

In case you missed any of the Nick Saban 60 Minutes feature, you can check it out here.

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