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ESPN Ultimate Standings 2009: Giants #45

These days, fans can’t afford to get taken for their sports bucks. So the minds at ESPN The Magazine ranked every franchise from the four major sports leagues to suss out which teams are most deserving of your hard-earned dollar. The Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim finished on top with the Los Angeles Clippers bringing up the rear.


Last Year’s Rank: 48
Title Track: 9
Ownership: 21
Coaching: 22
Players: 34
Fan Relations: 90
Affordability: 108
Stadium Experience: 97
Bang for the Buck: 26




Here’s a Rorschach test for Big Blue fans: What would you see in the amorphous shape presented on a test card, another Lombardi Trophy or a new Giants Stadium? (Trick question: It could be both.) With the core of New York’s 2007 championship squad intact, the G-Men’s title hopes remain strong headed into 2009. But the faithful yearn for a new stadium (due in 2010) almost as much as another championship. If you saw the bathrooms, you’d know why, not to mention overcrowded concrete concourses and an abundance of nosebleed seats. But creature comforts and championships don’t come cheap, obviously. Diehards are being asked to cough up as much as $20,000 for personal seat licenses for the right to purchase season tickets in the new crib. (So much for that legendary 140,000-person wait list.) No wonder New York is the second-most-expensive NFL franchise in our Standings, especially since the Giants sell tickets, beer, soft drinks and programs at prices well above league average. Despite being happy with the product on the field — okay, maybe not with former wideout Plaxico Burress’ marksmanship or common sense — and with a head coach, Tom Coughlin, who continues to put New York into the postseason, the money needed to put a Super Bowl contender together may drive fans to therapy.

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