Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Soul Did It First

A lot of people have asked about my thoughts on this issue. So, here it is publicly ... this is my stand once and for all.

This week was a big one in Philadelphia ... it is the first time in forever that the city has a team in a "world" championship game. (Ummm...not true, exactly.) I, of course, use quotes around world because afterall, the World Series is an American event. But, alas, that is not the purpose of this post.

The truth of the matter is that the Philadelphia Soul paved the way for any good that will be coming the city's way in terms of sports success.

Yes, the team may only have just celebrated its fifth anniversary - complete with bad "slogo" (a cross between a logo and a slogan) ... sorry, Jon ... I know you liked it, but really, it was just awful...but I digress...

In a short period of time, the team has had an incredible impact on the community (both in Philly and elsewhere), built a loyal fan base, gone thru some hard growing pains, and yes, won a "world" championship.

Some in Philly would say its not a real championship because its not one of the big four (Phillies, Sixers, Flyers and Eagles.) Now, I haven't lived in Philly that long but from what I see, the definition of a Philadelphia sports team seems to include heartbreaking losses, bad coaching, bad officiating, bad facilities, bad press (I don't mean negative press - I mean lack of coverage sometimes), bad decisions by the league and bad front office management.

If that's what it takes, I think the Soul have paid their dues and can be considered a real sports team. The organization has definitely lived thru all those criteria - though truly bad front office management (with the exception of ticketing) has been limited due to the strong ownership of the team and, until recently, a truly terrific general manager. And, I can't say enough good things about Coach Munsey.

EVERY team goes thru its highs and lows, but I gotta say that this one seems to be experiencing more ups than most in its early years. The staff works hard and the fans are fervent. Are there things to be improved upon? You bet. (See aforementioned quip regarding ticketing.) But, I am proud to have been a season ticketholder from day one and am proud to put my money with an organization that is making a difference. Period. *jumping off soap box now...ouch!*

PS ... One more thing ... umm .. Jon and Jaws - we need to go and get Matt D'O - I'm sure you're working on it ... just putting in my two cents here. ;-)