Almost two years ago, I drew the lineage of Boston sports royalty.
(The piece from May 2018 is included in this edition of the Chowdah. Keep scrolling)
Well in two years since that piece was written (I think there was a Royal wedding or baby, or a royal baby wedding that everybody was hot and heavy over) the Kingdom has seen some upheaval. Sir Mookie has been forsaken, took to Los Angeles, while the Duke of Gronkowski has retired to take up wrestling, both have given up their claimate to the throne.
The throne, which has been occupied by Tom Brady since 2004 (he took over from Pedro Martinez,) is suddenly open as Brady has vacated the kingdom for all the Dave & Buster’s tokens in Tampa.
So who will rule the Boston kingdom going forward? I don’t know. I really don’t. But because there’s no sports, I’ll run through the candidates.
Red Sox- Princes: Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers and Andrew Benintendi
Feels like the powers that be would love it if Benintendi could ascend to such a level. He has the lineage of being a left handed hitting, left fielder like prior kings Ted Williams and Carl Yastrzemski. Although Xander would be a solid choice with two World Series rings on his fingers already and feels like the leader of the team and has that long term deal. But Devers has the highest ceiling, after a breakout 2019 campaign, Devers could be a bona fide star for a long time.
Celtics- Princes: Jayson Tatum, Jaylen Brown and Kemba Walker
Kemba would have to win 3 titles to take the throne. In today’s NBA, he’s as likely to play 3 more games for the Celtics as anything. Brown is a heckuva player and will only get better, but I think he’s going to constantly be the Robin to Tatum’s Batman. Tatum has all the talent and excitement to rule the city. But will he stay long enough? With player movement in the NBA what it is, feels like stars (or potential stars) change teams like most people change tires.
Patriots- Princes: Julian Edelman, Devin McCourty and Dont’a Hightower
Edelman feels like the most popular athlete currently in Boston, and might be a short term king, the problem is that I think he only plays for another couple of years at most. McCourty and Hightower are deserving, but it’s tough for defensive players to become mainstream, also McCourty and Hightower are approaching 10 years in the league. Short term, the King could be a Patriot, but long term the only chance is Stidham becomes a stud and takes over the region.
Bruins- Princes: Zdeno Chara, Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marhand and David Pastrnak
I’d like for one of these guys to be King of the region, but who would it be? The Captain Chara? Bergeron aka Mr. Steady? Marchand, the loveable Dustin Pedroia-type pest? Or David Pastrnak, Pasta! Before the season was suspended, the 23-year old Pastrnak had 48 goals and 47 assists in just 70 games. Coming off a season where the Bruins went to a game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final and currently have the best record in the NHL, I’d put my long term money on Pastrnak, Devers or Tatum to take over Boston.
For right now? All hail King Chara. We didn’t get a younger King, but we did get a bigger one. The Hub needs a reliable leader and they don’t come anymore steady than the Captain.