Chicago Blackhawks' Jonathan Toews celebrates with the Stanley… (Scott Strazzante / Chicago…)
There's no arguing that the Blackhawks are the shining beacon of Chicago sports right now. Really, it's not even close. They have two Stanley Cups in four seasons and everything a franchise needs to be successful:
Players: Duh. Toews. Kane. Sharp. Crawford. Hossa. Keith. The list goes on. No first names necessary.
Management/coach: A smart trade here, a re-signing there—it's all come up aces. And Coach Q and his mustache take a backseat to no one.
Intangibles: All those overtimes in the 2013 playoffs, all those wins. Thank you, hockey gods.
So how close are the rest of the Chicago teams to being Stanley Cup-worthy in their respective sports? Let’s see.
SKY (90% there)
Players: Three of their starters are among the WNBA's best at their respective positions: Elena Delle Donne, Epiphanny Prince and Sylvia Fowles. Look 'em up.
Management/coach: The team finished with the best record in the East despite a lousy 2012. Not bad. Not bad at all.
Intangibles: They seem to be getting more love from TV, which is a good sign.
FIRE (70% there)
Players: They have the reigning MLS most valuable player in scoring machine Mike Magee and a world-class goalkeeper in Sean Johnson. Plenty to build on.
Management/coach: Hmm, there's a new coach coming in after this team barely missed out on the playoffs. Could be the missing element.
Intangibles: The team draws pretty well, which is admirable considering they're in Bridgeview.
BULLS (55% there)
Players: Right now, it looks OK. If the core stays relatively intact and Derrick Rose is close to what he was come 2014, Miami still has to worry.
Management/coach: Coach Tom Thibodeau is great, but the big question is whether they blow up the roster and start over. No one would blame them if they do.
Intangibles: Ugh. Derrick Rose is out, Jimmy Butler's been hurt and Luol Deng and Joakim Noah have bad injury histories. Even Carlos Boozer is iffy. Can this team catch a break? Oops, poor choice of words.
BEARS (50% there)
Players: The offense looks great. With Matt Forte, Jay Cutler and those great receivers, they can score by accident. Even the line is good now!
Management/coach: Huge question marks. The defense is old and hurt, and the young guys aren’t good enough yet. That’s on the front office. Don’t forget Marc Trestman’s decision to kick on second down, either. We won't.
Intangibles: Does unpredictable turf count as an advantage? Sigh. Never mind.
WHITE SOX (20% there)
Players: So there's Chris Sale and ... not much else to be excited about. Unless you count Paul Konerko's farewell tour, which, for these purposes, we don't.
Management/coach: Rebuild or reload? Whatever they're doing, it doesn’t seem to be working yet. Poor Robin Ventura.
Intangibles: Well, hey ... they're not the Cubs!
CUBS (10% there)
Players: Sorry, but even Starlin Castro and Anthony Rizzo have to win us back.
Management/coach: It's hard to tell whether they care more about rehabbing Wrigley or building the roster. Then again, we knew it'd get worse before it got better. And new coach Rick Renteria could provide a spark.
Intangibles: Basically, everything has worked against them the past century-plus. Curse or not, it ain't good.
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