The Montreal Alouettes are the Atlanta Braves of the CFL

Since 1996, when the they returned to the CFL after a 10 year absence, the Montreal Alouettes have compiled a regular season record of 120 wins -59 losses - 1 tie. Or a .669 winning percentage. By far the best record in the nine team league. The only team to have kept pace with this record are the Edmonton Eskimos - the New York Yankees of the CFL - who compiled a 103-77 record or .572 percentage.

Yet, it is the Eskimos with 2 Grey Cup titles (after 5 finals appearances) after tonight's thrilling 38-35 OT win over the Als. Montreal, for all their regular season dominance, have only one Grey Cup to show for it. That was won in 2002 over the same Eskimos.

For their part, since the early 1990s the Atlanta Braves, after 14 division NL titles* and 4 Pennants, are 1-3 in the World Series; losing twice to the New York Yankees. Yes, this is still a great achievement, but I'm sure they feel a little unfulfilled; just like the Montreal Alouette fans and front office feel this evening. Indeed, this type of success may even affect attendance. It already has in Atlanta and Montreal fans are notorious for their fickle behavior. A 'call me when you win' attitude may set in.

The Als let this one slip away - as they usually do. Brain dead penalties and pourous defense in critical moments simply did them in. The Esks were there for the taking - as they were all year long but still found a way to win.

This was Edmonton's 13th Grey Cup (second only to the Toronto Argonaut's 15). While they trail the Argonauts, since 1954 - when the Grey Cup officially became property of the CFL - the Eskimos have been the league's most successful franchise marked with periods of dynasties in the 50s and 70s. Hence, the Yankees reference. The Als, have always been a solid regular season club but now have a well-deserved reputation for not being able to win the big one. Montreal has 5 Grey Cups to their name in 14 tries.

These are not great days for Montreal sports fans. The Expos left MLB with no honor, the Habs are a mere shadow of their once shining masterful dominance in the NHL and the Alouettes are second fiddle in perpetuity. As one of the greatest actors of our generation once said, "Boo-hoo-hoo, always the bridesmaid but never the bride."

*Out of possible laziness, it is not uncommon to hear sports reports, shows and papers annoyingly praise the 14 consecutive division titles won by the Braves. This is a little unfair to the now defunct Montreal Expos. In 1994, the Expos were 74-40 when the players went on strike; in what turned out to be the death and fate-sealing moment for the Expo franchise. At the time, they were 6 games ahead of the Braves.

1 comment:

  1. I watched the last half of the game and enjoyed the thrilling ending. The attendance of 95,000 as the stadium would be about normal for a state championship of Texas high school football.

    And that EE coach? I didn't the star of Little Shop of Horrors or whatever that movie was with the big plant, knew anything about football. ;)


Mysterious and anonymous comments as well as those laced with cyanide and ad hominen attacks will be deleted. Thank you for your attention, chumps.