Around the second week of November, my hockey team, the Montreal Canadiens, were set to do battle with their Original Six nemesis, the Boston Bruins. They won in a mildly exciting, though rather uninspirational duel, and I cheered on the Habs from thirteen rows back.
As I whooped out of TD Banknorth Garden with compadre Hab fans, a drunk Boston fan (do I even need to put in the word 'drunk'?) decided to heckle us. "Welcome to champtown, boys!"
The claim was illegitimate at the time. Yes, the Boston Red Sox had just swept the Rockies to their second world series win in four years. Yes, the Boston College Eagles were undefeated at the time, and looking as though they would be playing for a title come January. And yes, the Celtics were well on their way to a 30-3 start.
But at the time, Boston was as much of a Champtown as say, San Antonio. Or Anaheim. Or Indianapolis. But every sports medium was considering the possibility of three major sports championships, plus a college title. And, for the maraschino on top-how about the Celtics with the best record in NBA history and an undefeated season for the Patriots?
I wonder if that Boston fan driving past me had any idea of what would happen to his Patriots in a short matter of months? I wonder if he knew that the Patriots would be near 14 point favorites in the Super Bowl, only to lose to a team from a city that know stands as as much of a "Champtown" as Boston-the New York Giants?
Or if he foresaw the Eagles losing 3 of their last 6 to miss the Bowl Championship Series completely?
But he couldn't possibly have seen the Boston Celtics losing to the Atlanta Hawks (of below .500 fame) in the first round????
Well, Boston, you're off that hook-for now. But if the Celtics do no emerge as the Eastern Conference champions, is it possible that Boston could go from Champtown to...