Leave the Bowls Behind — Time to Think Spring

Philly fans need to leave the winter blues behind.

What a weekend!

A South Jersey boy named “Squibbs” downed 203-cloned chicken scraps at the 17th annual Wing Bowl, “Big Ben” Roethlisberger proved once again that mediocrity still wins Super Bowls even after XLIII years and Michael Phelps apparently gets a better high off a bowl than winning an unprecedented eight gold medals plus the hearts of millions of Facebook followers.

Yes, it was the weekend of the bowl and whether Philadelphians wanted to be a part of the festivities or not, no one from the 215 earned an athletic cup trophy, a ring that would make J-Lo gasp or an Olympic-sized hit of real world reality.

This weekend may have gone up in smoke but there is still plenty of fuel for the fire in 2009. The weather may be cold but don’t throw away your hopes of another crazy year on the Philadelphia sports scene.

OK, for the next eight months Sundays won’t evolve around liver-killing, cholesterol-exploding and gut-busting fun with the boys in green. Suck it up. With the conclusion of another disappointing season let’s not start the post-loss depression Prozac binge.

Football is over, at least for now, so until Brett Favre says he’s coming to Philly, sit back and enjoy the rest of what this city has to offer.

Punxsutawney Phil said winter is here to stay, but he can’t change the date player’s start reporting to spring training. Yes the smoke is clearing and the World Champion Phillies begin to head to Clearwater in less than two weeks.

Not since the last millennium has there been a more exciting time to be a Phillies fan as Charlie Manuel and company look to repeat in the NL for the first time since the Big Red Machine of the 1970’s.

With high hopes on the horizon there will be no ill love or pressure from the rest of the country towards Philly when teams like the Yankees and Red Sox cleaned up the free agent market like it was a candy shop.

Ruben Amaro, Jr. continued a conservative spending baseball trend here in Philadelphia while the rest of the National League East bulked up more than Barry Bonds' chrome dome.

Speaking of Bonds, Phils pitcher J.C. Romero may not be in the clear but his arm will be fresher than a new set of Allen Iverson cornrows when he comes back from his 50-game suspension. The Phillies will be unfazed by the competition when September and Ryan Howard show up.

While the Biz Kids continue to cash in at Citizens Bank Ball Park, the 76ers are bringing back glimpses of hardwood heroics not seen since practice was optional and a little Magic couldn’t trick Moses and the Doctor.

The red, white and blue have won 10 of their last 13, going from last to second in the Atlantic Conference in barely three weeks.

The Cheek-less Sixers are fun to watch again -- there are still two and a half more months to run with the Sixers at the Wachovia Center as the A-Team look to lead the bunch to their second straight playoff appearance.

If you’re not convinced by the 76ers slow your roll, you’re only an upturned surface away from Canada’s greatest contribution to the rest of the world -- ice hockey.

Despite multiple injuries, including the loss of "Oh Danny Boy" Briere, the Flyers are sitting in sixth place in the conference -- just seven points back of second place. With an elite core, it will be business as usual when they head into the playoffs come April.

So relax Philly and take a deep breathe.

The winter blues are nearly over and with the spring comes a long overdue Bon Jovi concert, more playoff action and the reassurance that everyone’s favorite QB Donovan McNabb will remain under center.

We all knew he’d be back.

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