From February 2002 through February 2019 Boston celebrated 12 sports championships. However, over the last 15 months, the area lost two generational, transformative athletes, leaving the cupboard depleted.
After six Super Bowl titles, the Patriots let Tom Brady enter free agency. In his first year in Tampa Bay, Brady led the woebegone Buccaneers to a Super Bowl victory.
The Red Sox, one of the most valuable franchises in all of sports, decided they could not afford to sign erstwhile outfielder Mookie Betts to a long-term contract. So, in February 2020 they traded Betts to the Dodgers. In his first year in Los Angeles, Betts led the Dodgers to their first World Series title in 32 years.
One franchise decided to move on from the greatest quarterback of all time while the other jettisoned a then 27-year-old who was and remains the 2nd best all-around player in baseball.
Losing Brady and trading Betts have left the Patriots and Red Sox in mediocracy.
This leads us to this exercise; Who is now the best athlete in Boston?
Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts, Celtics Jayson Tatum, and Jaylen Brown are worthy candidates. As are Bruins Patrice Bergeron and David Pastrnak. But currently, the best athlete in Boston is Bruins winger Brad Marchand.
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Marchand is tied for third in the league in goals with (25), and 7th in points with (57). He is a three-zone force. Killing penalties while adding three short-handed goals and four game-winners.
Marchand has taken a patient approach to his lofty status. Over the past five seasons, Marchand is the 4th leading point producer in the NHL with 162 goals, 252 assists, good for 414 points. Trailing only Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, and Patrick Kane. Three players who have each won the Hart Trophy, as the NHL’s regular-season MVP.
In comparison to the other candidates for this title, Marchand is more consistent and a better leader than both Tatum and Brown. Brings more of an edge than Bogaerts. Among his linemates, he produces more points than Bergeron and is miles better in his own end than Pastrnak.
As of now, the biggest star on the Patriots happens to be its head coach, Bill Belichick.
Marchand turns 33 in a few weeks and has shown that he is durable and flexible in continuously improving his game.
Brad Marchand, the best professional athlete in Boston.
John Sapochetti is co-host of three podcasts heard on Full Press Radio:
-The Pick & Roll NBA Podcast With Jet & Sap
-The Sap & Kat Show
-The Get Off My Lawn Podcast With Keegan & Sap
Follow him on Twitter @JohnSap25
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