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From The Eagles To The Sixers, Philly’s Embracing Their Moment

The city of Philadelphia has been waiting for this moment for years. When they would be able to stand with their chests out and logos proudly displayed, at the top of the sports world. 

Kevin Hart on Twitter

Let’s gooooooooo SIXERS….It’s almost game time. Stand Up Philadelphia it’s our time damn it!!!!

Philly hasn’t been the place to be in sports since Allen Iverson was executing superhuman acts on the basketball court and captivating the culture and Donovan McNabb and T.O. were clashing and connecting on a drama-filled Super Bowl run. Within that decade, the Phillies also rode two African-American MVP’s to a World Series in 2008. Since then Philly sports has been a Black Hole of embarrassment for most Pennsylvanians. 

It wasn’t that long ago, just 2015 when Phillys four pro sports teams won 37.5% of their games. Among cities with teams in each of the four major pro sports (NFL, NBA, MLB, NHL), thats the second-worst mark of all-time. The reputation of Philly fans ranked about the same in comparison to those of other sports towns.  

Recently there’s been a change in the direction of Philadelphias sports culture. After years of futility and just misses, the Eagles won the first Super Bowl in franchise history in February. 

(ATTN: EAGLES FANS) Philadelphia Eagles: The Underdog Story (Super Bowl 52 Cinematic Highlight)

Thank you so much for watching. Please like and share the video if you’ve enjoyed it. A lot of the music is by Kevin MacLeod, the father of royalty-free music. I also pulled a lot of footage from various sources, including the Eagles’ official YouTube channel, which has great content.

This came amidst a backdrop of social consciousness among NFL players that led to heightened drama during the NFL season; conflicts between owners and players and the President. Philadelphia was at the forefront of the NFL player protests, with Malcolm Jenkins leading the Players Coalition. They were lauded for being the blackest franchise in the NFL and boasted a white player in Chris Long that openly and vocally supported the causes of his fellow African-American teammates.  

The Shadow League on Twitter

Malcolm Jenkins confirmed he has no intentions to go to the White House after the Eagles won the Super Bowl. https://t.co/BzdSx2Vaoz

The impact that the Eagles had on the sports world was transcending. Throw the legal battles of Philly-born rap star, political prisoner
Meek Mill, into the mix and the City of Brotherly Love, has been the central location for exposing the racial injustices in society that Colin Kaepernick sacrificed his NFL career for. Meek’s questionable legal predicament (and his Dreams and Nightmares intro)  became a rallying cry for Philly’s football team and the community that recognizes Meek’s incarceration as another injustice against the African American community. 

The Shadow League on Twitter

The Eagles bumping that Meek Mill heavy in the locker room. #SuperBowl https://t.co/pEA2EEetmQ

The success of Jay Wright’s Villanova program, –winning two of the last three NCAA titles with blue-collar, hard-nosed squads that reflect the characteristics of the city they represent — has also contributed to Philadelphia’s sports takeover. The fact that the Philadelphia pro hoops scene has come back to life during the same time frame, has shined a light on the city of Philly’s sports culture, that was largely ignored for the past two decades. 

In ignoring Philly’s culture, we find that the spirit of the African-American urban sports fan has also been suppressed to a degree. The emergence of Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid and a #trusttheprocess slogan that mirrors the slow and steady progress made by African-Americans in this country, is all coming to a head as the NBA World has become captivated with the Philly flow. With Cleveland and LeBron James struggling and Kyrie Irvings playoff absence in Boston, the time frame for the Philadelphia Sixers’ band of tank titans to blossom into championship contenders is accelerated to now. 

After Saturdays 130-103 first-round, Game 1 playoff shellacking of Miami, optimism in Philadelphia is at a 20-year high and the city hasn’t been basketball crazy like this since A.I. won Game 1 of the 2001 NBA Finals with a historical performance against the almost unbeatable Shaq-Kobe Lakers. 

Bleacher Report on Twitter

Philly makes it look easy with 130-103 win over Miami in Game 1. Ben Simmons: 17 PTS 9 REB 14 AST

The Phillies who finished with the second-worst record in the National League at 66-96 in 2017 are off to a 9-5 start this MLB season and it’s looking like the baseball squad will also be a contributing factor to Philadelphia’s rebirth of confidence and reintroduction into the elite franchises of pro sports. 

In hockey, the Flyers are battling in the playoffs and fans are optimistic. 

Harrisburgers on Twitter

Breaking News: Sidney Crosby blocks out hostile Philly crowd, leads Penguins to Game 3 win #flyers #philadelphia #hockey #stanleycup #broadstreet #cheesesteaks #sports #sportsnews #NHL #BeBold https://t.co/47tudltNfY

Everybody’s a winner in Philly right now. The underdog town, who takes up the causes of the disenfranchised, ignored and underserved has risen to the top of the totem pole. 

The fact that sports analysts such as First Take’s Max Kellerman are calling Philly  “the best sports town in America” has shown you how far the towns sports culture has come in the past decade. On the flip side, there are still folks who refuse to buy into it. 

Stephen A.: ‘It ain’t even close,’ Boston is a better sports city than Philly | First Take | ESPN

Stephen A. Smith and Max Kellerman debate the best sports cities, with Stephen A. saying Boston is easily a better sports town than Philadelphia due to its recent titles, while Max says it’s New York because of its history.

But just being in the conversation shows how far Philly sports has come and for African-Americans, as long as the sports spotlight is on the city of Philly, the voices of people of color will be in the news cycle and forced to be heard. 

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