When we look back at 2007, we’ll remember one of the most exciting players in the NFL doing prison time for financing a dog fighting ring. We’ll remember Peyton Manning for finally winning the big one. We’ll remember Barry Bonds for breaking a sacred record, and the grand jury indictment that followed. We’ll remember watching the greatest football teams ever in New England and a 400 plus page report that devastated baseball.
But more than anything, 2007 should be remembered as a very forgettable year for New York City, which watched in embarrassment as its teams were exposed, pummeled or blowing a seemingly insurmountable division lead.
Not only did the city watch as the punchless Yankees dropped their third straight division series, but George Mitchell’s report helped raise questions about the legitimacy of team’s dominant run during the late nineties. Both Roger Clemens and the beloved Andy Pettite are now accused cheaters, along with well over a dozen other players who played on championship teams in the Bronx.
All of these allegations make you seriously wonder, were those Yankees, the team led by Paul O’Neil and Scott Brosius, really the best team in baseball or were they just the best at cheating?
Meanwhile, Madison Square Garden has become a laughing stock, filled with sexual harassment settlements, giant pink slips and a bumbling Knicks franchise that puts a team in the front office that is just as incompetent as the one getting embarrassed on the court every night.
Isiah Thomas has managed to build a team that plays no defense, has little chemistry and loves to take low percentage shots. He blames everybody else for a mess he created, and his boss, Jim Dolan does absolutely nothing about, which sends one slap-to-the-face message to every fan: The team is still profitable, so winning isn’t that important
And then, there is the Mets, who a few months into the baseball season seemed to have taken the city from the Yankees. They were making the backpages of all the newspapers with their influx of young, exciting talent. But just like that, they fell into a slump they just couldn’t get out of. Jose Reyes went from the game’s best shortstop to third best in his own division. And the Phillies took over, ultimately winning the division.
To make matters worse, they made one minor move in the off season and then they sat and watched as a former clubhouse boy dished out all kinds of information about steroids to George Mitchell.
Replaced by Boston as the capitol of the sports world, filled with controversy and disgrace, yes, New York City had a rough year in 2007. And I’ve got news for you, 2008 isn’t looking much better.