Bases empty, two outs, a 3-1 game, #8 hitter up. Nothing comes down to this.

Friday, February 2, 2018

FUCK BOSTON, quantified

So, you know how fuck Boston?

This Sunday, the New England Patriots will play for the Superbowl and if they win, it will be their 6th title since 2002. The Brady-Belichick era has been the most dominant in NFL history. Annoyingly, other Boston teams have also been successful in this period (heretofore referred to as the Fuck Boston Era): The Red Sox won the World Series in 2004, 2007, and 2013, the Celtics won the NBA Championship in 2008, and the Bruins won the Stanley Cup in 2011. Fuck Boston!

In the last 16 years, they've won 10 championships in all four major North American sports. And in two days, it might be 11. Fuck Boston.

Also, Boston is the worst!* Tom Brady and his pseudoscience are the worst. Patriots owner Bob Kraft is the worst. Boston fans are the worst. Boston sports radio personalities are the worst. Fuck Boston.

*this is the part where I mention that I've been to Boston twice and have had a lovely experience both times.

But it got me wondering: fuck Boston, yes, but fuck Boston just how much compared to fuck other cities, historically?

Sorry. In plain English: are there any other eras in which one city dominated the sports landscape as thoroughly as Boston has in recent memory, with both the volume and variety of championships?


The Methodology

To measure this, a new statistic is introduced:

The Functional Utility Calculation for Knowing, Based On Statistics, the Temporal dOminance Number (FUCKBOSTON), calculated as:

Since 2002, Boston has won 10 championships in 4 different sports across 16 years, giving the Fuck Boston Era a 16-Year FUCKBOSTON of (10 * 4) / 16 = 2.5. Fuck Boston!

So, has any other city dominated an era of North American sports like Boston has the current era? 5-year, 10-year, 15-year, and 20-year FUCKBOSTONs were calculated for all possible such eras, going back to 1903. Results are listed below.

80s-era LA coming in hot! Los Angeles teams between 1984 and 1988 won three NBA championships (Lakers), a World Series title (Dodgers), and a Superbowl (Raiders), for a dominant five-year stretch that nonetheless only ties them with the Fuck Boston Era Boston teams. Fuck LA! 

Sports fans can look back at past championship statistics and marvel at the dominant teams of bygone eras (hello, '60s Celtics), but it's impossible to get the visceral jealous hatred towards a city as a whole that goes with living through the era. As a millennial (yes, fuck me, I know), even though I knew the Lakers were great in the '80s, and I've seen the other LA titles listed as statistics, I never really thought of '80s LA as being a dominant sports city in the way Boston is now. But looking at the FUCKBOSTON numbers, sports fans at the time must have similarly despised LA, especially since LA fans are the worst. Fuck LA!

Expanding the definition of "era" to ten years puts Boston squarely on top. Fuck Boston!

For the 15-year FUCKBOSTON, New York in the '70s claims the top spot. The Big Apple boasts World Series titles in '69 (Mets), and '77 and '78 (Yankees), four consecutive Stanley Cups from '80-'83 (Islanders), NBA titles in '70 and '73 (in which the Phil Jackson-as-a-player Knicks defeated the Pat Riley-as-a-player Lakers? That happened?), and a Superbowl in '69 (the Joe Namath-led Jets). Fuck New York!

For 20 year stretches, New York completely dominates.  Most of the top 10 are variations on the aforementioned late 60s-early 80s NY teams, with the only exception being one version of the Fuck Bostons.

For all possible lengths of era, Boston, LA, and New York completely dominate the leaderboards. The first non-Big-Three cities for each table, ignoring some ties because I'm lazy, are:

A Major Caveat

Obviously, this statistic only captures information about championships, and does not in any way attempt to measure the qualitative ways in which fuck Boston. Were we to include some sort of multiplier to account for qualitative parameters, Boston would obviously run away with all possible mutations of FUCKBOSTON. An initial draft of such a multiplier would look something like this:

*Was 0.1 before Golden State blew a 3-1 lead

Further Analysis

Wondering where your city ranks? How the Big Three's scores have evolved over time? Looking for more reasons to hate Boston? Stay tuned to Bottom of the Fourth for follow-up analysis in the coming weeks.


  • Data was used starting from 1903 for MLB, 1927 for the NHL, 1950 for the NBA, and 1967 for the NFL, because those are the starting dates for the most recent data tables on Wikipedia; any previous data is in a separate table. I sure as shit wasn't gonna copy multiple tables for a single sport, jesus christ. What am I, made of time?
  • Yes, the Islanders play nowhere near New York City (or at least they did until recently). Shut up.
  • I don't really give a shit about teams that technically play out of the city or even in a different state, or fanbases that are split between two teams (i.e. Yankees vs. Mets). If you're spoiled enough to have so much choice in your home teams, shut up.