Toronto may be Loserville North — with NHL, NBA, CFL and MLB teams that range from mediocre to woefully abysmal — but Loserville South seems even worse.
Loserville South appears to be a living hell.
I sense this because I’m visiting Loserville South this week and the first words I heard here on the local radio station in my rental car were these:
“I’m tired of wearing bags on my head at the stadiums. There is no hope here. I’m seriously depressed. I can’t root for these teams here any more. I have nothing left. I’m trying to get transferred to another city.”
And as pitiful as the teams may be in Toronto, I’ve never come across any Torontonian thinking of moving because of them.
But it’s bad here in Miami and vicinity, where the Dolphins won only one of their games in the past NFL season and are on the verge of hiring their fifth head coach in five years.
It’s bad here because the Heat, despite the leadership of superstar Dwyane Wade, are a meagre 8-26, languish in the cellar of their division and have lost seven consecutive games.
The Marlins are a laughingstock because of owner Jeffrey Loria, who tries to operate a major-league franchise with minor-league players and minor-league salaries.
And then there’s the NHL’s Panthers, who aren’t much, either. They hover around .500 in the NHL, though, around here, that makes them the cream of the crop.
Not that the Panthers are satisfied with their 41 points at the midway point of their season.
On their home ice, the Panthers are 9-9-2. They’ve lost four of their past five games.
“Everybody keeps saying the right things,” Florida goaltender Tomas Vokoun said, “but nothing good’s really going on.
“We play well in spurts and not so well in other spurts.”
For fans in Loserville South, however, the Panthers’ inconsistency is a lot better than the pure hopelessness emanating from the Dolphins, Marlins and Heat.
“I don’t know if it’s a mental thing, if it’s in our heads, or we don’t believe,” Heat forward Udonis Haslem said, “but, for whatever reason, we just can’t get it done.”
The Heat are 0-for-2008.
Attendance figures for all South Florida franchises have been plummeting. That’s understandable, too, not only because of the wretched teams around here but also because of a troubled economic climate.
Financial times are so difficult here that South Floridians are bracing themselves for a depressed economy.
Their sports organizations already have them depressed.
All of which makes a guy realize Loserville North may not be all that horrible.
In three-plus decades as a columnist and broadcaster, Marty York has built a network of solid contacts and a renowned reputation for his hard-hitting, groundbreaking style. The tradition continues in Metro Sports.