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Toronto Maple Leafs named worst sports franchise in North America – SportsUntapped.com
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Added September 23rd, 2014 by Ian

Toronto Maple Leafs named worst sports franchise in North America
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For the second time in the last three years ESPN has named the Toronto Maple Leafs of the National Hockey League as the worst sports franchise in all of North America. ESPN ranked 122 professional franchises across the continent and once again, to nobody’s surprise, the Leafs once again came in dead last in 2014, the same position they finished in 2012. The club finished as high as 119 last year as they reached the playoffs for the first time in nine years.

ESPN’s Ultimate Standings publication ranked all of the clubs in various categories such as ‘bang for the buck’, fan relations, ownership, coaching, players, affordability, stadium experience, and the number of wins per fan dollars spent. The Maple Leafs came in last in several of the categories and close to last in the rest of them. With the team making the playoffs just once on the last 10 years and charging the highest ticket prices in the NHL it’s easy to see why the franchise ranked so poorly. The average ticket price for a Leafs home game is $122.20, which is 34 per cent higher than any other NHL club.

At the other end of the table, the San Antonio Spurs of the NBA ranked as the best franchise in North America while the Anaheim Ducks of the NHL came in second. The Seattle Seahawks of the Football League were third followed by the Memphis Grizzlies of the NBA in fourth and the Los Angeles Kings of the NHL in fifth. Rounding out the top 10 were the Tampa Bay Lightning of the NHL, the Oklahoma City Thunder of the NBA, the NFL’s Green Bay Packers, the Dallas Mavericks of the NBA and the NHL’s Chicago Blackhawks.

Four of the top-10 ranked teams are from the NBA and the NHL with the other two coming from the NFL. While we know the Leafs were the last, we see that the New York Knicks of the NBA were ranked as second-worst at number 121. The rest of the 10 worst franchises were the Milwaukee Bucks of the NBA, the Oakland Raiders of the NFL, the New York Mets Major League Baseball (MLB) team, the Chicago Cubs of MLB, the New York Islanders of the NHL, the Edmonton Oilers of the NHL, the NBA’s Minnesota Timberwolves and the NFL’s New York Jets. Three of the bottom 10 are from the NHL and the NBA with MLB and the NFL having two each.

The Maple Leafs are owned by Maple Leaf Sports and Entertainment, who also own the Toronto Raptors NBA club as well as Toronto FC of Major League soccer. The Raptors ranked number 74 out of 122 franchises while Toronto FC and none of the other MLS clubs were even ranked. The Toronto Blue Jays MLB club came in at number 81. However, they’re owned by Rogers Communications.

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