Quality of Life

Sports Teams

Star athletes such as Jimmy Rollins, Donovan McNabb, Andre Iguodala and Mike Richards call Philadelphia home. You've seen them on TV, now it's time to experience the real thing — front and center! Spectator tickets for most sporting events can be purchased at the venues, on the team Web sites, through Ticketmaster.com or www.comcasttix.com.

Philadelphia Phillies

Philadelphia PhilliesOnce spring rolls around, the Philly faithful turn their attention to the World Champion Philadelphia Phillies at the dazzling Citizens Bank Park. After the 2007 Phightin' Phils fell short in their first playoff berth since 1993, the 2008 team electrified Greater Philadelphia by bringing home the region's first professional sports championship in 25 years.

Loyalists vividly remember their 1980 World Series title, and few can forget the excitement of their 1993 World Series run, but the latest team of destiny may go down as the region's favorite of all time. Want proof? Over one million fans lined up and down Broad Street to cheer on the Phillies at their championship parade.

The Phillies defeated the Tampa Rays four games to one in the 2008 World Series thanks to a team made up of young stars and savvy veterans. Led by outspoken slick fielding shortstop Jimmy Rollins, the current Phillies infield will be mentioned among the best in the history of baseball when it's all said and done. First baseman Ryan Howard, perhaps the most intimidating slugger in all of baseball, carried the club down the stretch and finished the championship season with an amazing 47 homers and 146 RBIs. All-star second baseman Chase Utley rounds out the three-headed monster in the infield. Despite playing nearly the entire season with an injured hip, Utley still managed to make his third consecutive all-star team and hit 33 home runs.

While the Phils featured a potent lineup, it was the pitching staff that locked down the opposition throughout the season and the playoffs. Ace left-hander Cole Hamels won the World Series MVP by pitching two magical games that resulted in victories for the Phils. Fan favorite Jamie Moyer, a young 46-year-old and a Greater Philadelphia native, topped the team with 16 wins during the regular season. Perhaps the key piece that got the team over the hump was the acquisition of lights out closer, Brad Lidge. Lidge was a perfect 41-for-41 in save opportunities and recorded the last out in the World Series.

Much of the nucleus will return as the Phils look to repeat in 2009. For more information, visit www.phillies.com.

Philadelphia Eagles

Philadelphia EaglesAffectionately nicknamed "The Birds," the Philadelphia Eagles are the professional football team of Greater Philadelphia and probably have the largest fan base of any team in the region. Dressed in green and white, the Eagles have experienced tremendous success in recent years under the direction of Andy Reid, the head coach and VP of Football Operations. Since Reid and franchise quarterback Donovan McNabb came on board, they've led the Eagles to their first Super Bowl since 1980, played in five NFC Conference Championship games and earned five NFC East titles.

The 2008 Eagles came up one game short of the ultimate goal, as they made it all the way to the NFC Championship game. Thanks in part to the strong play of McNabb and a very opportunistic defense, the Birds won four of their last five games to sneak into the playoffs.

McNabb overcame early season struggles to set team records with 3,916 passing yards and 345 completions. Standout running back and Villanova alum Brian Westbrook, also became the franchise's all-time leader in total yards from scrimmage (9,330). The success of the offense was due in large part to the massive offensive line that protects McNabb and the addition of rookie wide receiver DeSean Jackson, who led the team with 62 receptions and 912 yards. The defense, one of the most consistent units in the NFL, is anchored by defensive end Trent Cole and pro bowl defensive back Asante Samuel.

Eagles fans, widely known for their tenacity and boisterousness, deserve a mention of their own. The lyrics "Fly, Eagles, Fly!" mark the beginning of the Eagles' Fight Song that is blasted after every score and, in recent years, Philadelphians have been known to spontaneously erupt into chorus on subways, in bars and even on city streets! Come to a football game at Lincoln Financial Field and you're likely to find the parking lots full of tailgaters. For more information, visit www.philadelphiaeagles.com

Philadelphia 76ers

Philadelphia 76ersThe 76ers play their games inside the Wachovia Center and the excitement within the arena is absolutely contagious. The team is extremely young, but is dedicated to rebuilding itself back into a contender under the leadership of Ed Stefanski, the team's new president and general manager, and new head coach Eddie Jordan.

Andre Iguodala, known for his incredible leaping ability, became the team's go-to-guy, as he led the Sixers in scoring. Unselfish veteran point guard Andre Miller topped the team in assists. Miller makes it easy for his teammates, as he finds open looks for Iguodala and the team's other young players, mainly fan favorites Louis Williams, Thaddeus Young and shot-blocking extraordinaire Samuel Dalembert. Rookie big man Maurice Speights showed a lot of potential and provides optimism for the team's future. For more information, visit www.sixers.com.

Philadelphia Flyers

Philadelphia FlyersThe Philadelphia Flyers have been one of the most successful teams in the NHL ever since they were formed as an expansion ice hockey team back in 1967. Wearing black and orange, the Flyers have skated their way into seven Stanley Cup finals, winning the prized Cup in 1974 and 1975. The Flyers are one of the NHL's most consistent teams and continue to play in front of passionate sell-out crowds at the Wachovia Center.

The Flyers made their second consecutive postseason appearance in 2008-09 with a team full of young talent and savvy veterans. Under the tutelage of third year head coach John Stevens, fans enjoyed one of the best turnarounds in team history. The club finished the regular season with 95 points.

Stevens relies heavily on the sharp shooting and slick passing of center Mike Richards, and all-star center Jeff Carter, who led the team in goals. Danny Briere battled injuries all year, but veteran and fan favorite Simon Gagne returned from injury problems to provide scoring power and much needed leadership. Right wing Mike Knuble and left wing Scott Hartnell add scoring power and toughness on the ice, while defensemen Chris Pronger, Kimo Timonen and Braydon Coburn protect new goalie Ray Emery. For more information, visit www.philadelphiaflyers.com.

 
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