Looking at the most dominant teams in all major sports leagues
While it’s been a tough year for sports with COVID-19, we’ve been lucky enough to witness a championship in all four major sports. With two of the four major sports leagues already into their seasons, one having recently concluded and one on the verge of starting, let’s take a look at the top five teams in their respective sport.
National Basketball Association (NBA)
- Utah Jazz (27-8)
No one would have expected the Utah Jazz to be sitting comfortably in first in the NBA standings. Led by all-stars Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert, this team has been firing on all cylinders, winning 23 of their past 27 games. The Jazz are out for vengeance after losing seven games to the Denver Nuggets in the first round of last season’s postseason.
- Brooklyn Nets (23-13)
Kevin Durant, James Harden and Kyrie Irving have been on fire this season, averaging 121 points per game. On the other hand, their defence has been a different story. However, it’s been improving every game. It’s championship or bust for this superteam.
- Los Angeles Lakers (24-11)
The Lakers will always be near the top of the NBA standings as long as LeBron James is healthy. However, they have looked a bit lost recently; losing four of seven Anthony Davis went down with a calf injury. The good news: it’s not supposed to be long-term. A healthy Lakers team in the playoffs is the team to beat.
- Los Angeles Clippers (24-12)
The Clippers have been almost unbeatable when both Paul George and Kawhi Leonard are in the lineup. The problem is actually to have them both dressed up at the same time, as they have had multiple injuries.
- Philadelphia 76ers (23-12)
Team leader Joel Embiid has been a pleasure to watch this season and has been playing like a MVP candidate. Could a deep playoff run finally be in store for a 76ers team with so much to offer? Only time will tell.
National Hockey League (NHL)
- Toronto Maple Leafs (17-4-2)
The Maple Leafs have been the hottest team in the NHL recently, with Auston Matthews leading the way. The superstar is leading the NHL in goals with 20 in 18 games. Can he score 50 goals in the shortened season?
- Tampa Bay Lightning (14-4-1)
The reigning Stanley Cup champions came out of the gate hot. Even with some injuries, the core of this team looks as good as ever. Winger Nikita Kucherov is also inching closer to a return. Watch out.
- Florida Panthers (13-4-4)
The Panthers might have the most underrated offensive duo in the NHL with Aleksander Barkov and Jonathan Huberdeau. Chris Driedger has also been a revelation in goal, while starting goalie Sergei Bobrovsky has been underwhelming.
- Vegas Golden Knights (13-4-1)
The Golden Knights have been getting consistent offence throughout their lineup. However, the main reason for their success has been Marc-Andre Fleury. He’s leading the league in almost every goaltending category.
- Boston Bruins (12-5-2)
The Bruins always seem to be near the top. Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak are playing like the best line in hockey and are wreaking havoc in the loaded East division. Not to mention their great goalie tandem.
Major League Baseball (MLB)
- Los Angeles Dodgers
Who’s going to stop the Dodgers? Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, David Price and newly acquired Cy Young winner Trevor Bauer. All of this with the best batting in baseball. Good luck to everyone else.
- San Diego Padres
The Padres conquered the offseason, signing Fernando Tatis Jr. to the longest deal in baseball history while also trading for Yu Darvish and Blake Snell. The Padres may be on their way to dominating baseball for years.
- New York Yankees
It’s going to be interesting early on for Yankee fans. This team looks dominant on paper, as they finally have a healthy Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton. If Gerrit Cole performs as usual and Corey Kluber shows glimpses of his 2017 self, it’s game on.
- Atlanta Braves
Last season, The Braves were one game away from the World Series without their superstar Mike Soroka. A healthy rotation mixed in with a dominant offence led by Freddie Freeman and Ronald Acuna Jr. is going to be a joy to watch.
- Chicago White Sox
The White Sox are going to be one of the most exciting young teams to follow. Their roster is as deep as anyone, and the acquisition of Lance Lynn may be the most underrated move of the offseason.
National Football League (NFL)
- Tampa Bay Buccaneers
As reigning Super Bowl champions, the number one spot is theirs to lose. Back-to-back championships are entirely possible.
- Kansas City Chiefs
The core will be returning, and quarterback Patrick Mahomes is going to be hungrier than ever. The Chiefs will be the odds-on favourite to win it all next season.
- Buffalo Bills
It’s finally time for everyone to respect the Bills. With a dynamic young quarterback in Josh Allen, talented receivers and a top 10 defence, this team’s future is bright.
- Green Bay Packers
Could Aaron Rodgers force a trade to end his tenure with the Packers if they don’t fulfill his needs in the offseason? Time will tell, but the clock is ticking on the Packers’ championship window.
- Los Angeles Rams
The Rams boast an elite defence with Aaron Donald leading the pack. They just needed an upgrade on offence to really emerge as Super Bowl contenders. Getting Matthew Stafford was perhaps the answer.
Graphic by Taylor Reddam