ESPN, the world leader in every sport except for Hockey, caused quite the stir a couple days ago when it put out it's annual "Ultimate Organizational Rankings". The rankings were determined by a number of factors, and ranked all teams in each major North American sport under one system.
The system was obviously flawed, as the top ranking NHL team went to the Phoenix Coyotes, who are bankrupt and owned by the league, constantly a threat to be moved. One of the other top NHL squads is the New Jersey Devils who are also in serious financial troubles, unable to pay back an 80 million dollar loan.
The rankings may make some Sens fans smile however, as the Senators were ranked 43rd overall, ahead of the Canucks, Canadiens, Flames, Oilers, Jets and Leafs. More fun for Sens fans: the Leafs were ranked DEAD LAST among all organizations in any major sport. This reeks of trying to drive up page views by being sensationalist, but it is nonetheless quite funny.
Could the Senators be the top Canadian organization though? Especially after last season, the team has shown an ability to win on a budget, has a stable owner (financially at least...), solid coaching and management. By contrast the only other Canadian team that was better than Ottawa last season plays out of Vancouver, and they are a team with a much higher operating budget and have not lived up to expectations in recent years.
How would you rank the Canadian franchises, based on ESPN's format?
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- James Gordon on the ESPN rankings. [SensExtra]