Milwaukee moves up among tortured sports championship cities

Milwaukee hasn't won a championship since 1971
Milwaukee moves up among tortured sports championship cities
Posted at 4:31 PM, Jun 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-23 11:32:19-04

Now that the Cleveland Cavaliers have removed the albatross around the neck of a city that's been waiting decades since its last championship, Milwaukee moves up to third place on a list nobody is proud of -- the longest drought without a major sports title.

It's been 45 years -- the 1971 Milwaukee Bucks -- since our city has won a championship in one of the four major sports leagues (NBA, NFL, MLB and NHL).

It's the third-longest drought among cities that have at least two teams and have won at least one championship. We're looking at you San Diego and Buffalo, who won AFL championships in 1963 and 1965 respectively.

A USA Today article on the issue mercifully gave Milwaukee a pass because of the Green Bay Packers, but last time we checked, the Packers don't play any games within Milwaukee's city limits. And when they did play a couple of games a year in Milwaukee, those teams never won a Super Bowl between 1971 and 1994.

So without the second coming of Lew Alcindor or Oscar Robertson, how long will Milwaukee have to wait to hoist another championship banner?

Despite some regression last season, the Bucks have a talented young core, but are at least a couple of years, some shrewd roster maneuvering and a lot of luck away from a serious championship conversation. But a shiny new arena on the horizon doesn't hurt the cause. 

As for the Brewers -- who have never won a World Series and lost its best chance in 1982 -- there are also glimmers of hope.

The Brew Crew need only look within its division and 90 minutes south to find an example of a team that went from being an also-ran into a dominant force. But it remains to be seen if the Brewers' collection of young farm talent will translate to the Major League level. 

At best? They're at least two years minimum away from dreaming of a World Series. And those young Cubs, Pirates and Cardinals don't appear to be going anywhere anytime soon.  

Here's hoping the pressure of being one of the last cities standing is enough to push Milwaukee to championship glory.

According to USA Today, here's the list of cities who've gone the longest since its last championship, not including the old AFL and allowing Milwaukee to bask in the Packers' Super Bowl glory.

  1. Cincinatti (26 years - 1990 Reds)
  2. Minneapolis (25 years - 1991 Twins)
  3. Washington D.C. (25 years - 1991 Redskins)
  4. Toronto (1993 Blue Jays)
  5. Atlanta (1995 Braves)