Success is a Year-To-Year Proposition
Dynasty is a word many media types and fans like to throw around, but when you take a realistic look at how things work in sports, there’s little doubt that any team’s success or lack thereof is a year-to-year thing. And there isn’t a better current example of this phenomenon than the Dallas Cowboys.
Sure, much of their misfortune this season, namely their seven-game losing streak, was largely due to losing starting quarterback Tony Romo to a shoulder injury. But considering Dallas was 12-4 in 2014, the Cowboys’ 2015 fall has been rather precipitous.
The Dallas Stars, who currently have one of the NHL’s best records, are another prime example. It was just two seasons ago that the Stars ended a playoff dry spell, and with pieces in place like captain Jamie Benn and top goal scorer Tyler Seguin, it appeared they would be a perennial force in the Western Conference for years to come. Then last season, Dallas couldn’t overcome a bad start and ended up missing the playoffs in year two under Lindy Ruff, a surprise, especially after their previous success.
The Mavericks, who have been a nice surprise through the first month of a grueling 82-game NBA season, are in a similar boat. But the Mavs could be considered a year-to-year proposition for an entirely different reason. Namely because the cast of characters who head coach Rick Carlisle has to work with seems to be changing with each passing year. Carlisle, however, one of the Association’s top head coaches, has been adept at making all these new pieces fit, and has even said on several occasions it is a challenge he welcomes and loves at the start of each season.
The Rangers also have had their share of recent ups and downs, slogging through an injury-marred 2014 that saw then-manager Ron Washington abruptly resign late in the season. Under new skipper Jeff Banister, the 2015 American League Manager of the Year, the Rangers overcame a rough start and ended up winning the American League West for the first time since 2011. With most of that team returning for 2016, it appears the Rangers are in a good spot.
FC Dallas is a similar story. On Sunday, FCD’s season ended when Portland advanced to MLS Cup by winning the Western Conference Finals 5-3 on aggregate scoring. And the prevailing sentiment is that FCD, thanks to a commitment to playing young players by head coach Oscar Pareja, is well positioned to contend well into the future.
The moral of the story is for fans whose teams are having any level of success is to enjoy it because it can be quite fleeting. Whether it’s due to injuries, free agency, trades, players getting old or the like, anything and everything truly can happen on a year-to-year basis, which can shake even the most rock-solid organizations to their very core.
But such is life for sports fans and it’s definitely all part of supporting your favorite team, whether those times are good or bad.