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Best Teams in JAL History to Not Win the Cup


Raising the WWCD Cup is no easy task. In fact there are a lot of great teams in league history that fell short. Had some come through in the end we'd probably look back on them a lot different. Here's our list of the 5 best teams that didn't win the championship.

*List only includes modern era teams (JAL 4 - present)

1. JAL 7 Cobras - Roster: Brock Johnson, Cale Johnson

Regular season: 3-0, 1st Playoffs: Lost in Semifinals

This Cobras team was red hot before they met their demise. Dating back to their undefeated championship tournament in JAL VI the Cobras were on a league record 7 game win streak (record still holds today). It was the Rapids who took them down in what is commonly referred to as the biggest upset in JAL history.

2. JAL 7 underdogs - Roster: Taite Kleine, Ty Johnson

Regular season: 2-1, 2nd Playoffs: Lost in Semifinals

The underdogs team had two players currently ranked #4 and #6 at a time when the competition wasn't as good as it is today. If there were player rankings back in JAL 7 Kleine and Johnson may have both been in the top 3. Of course going into the tournament everyone was anticipating an exciting WWCD Cup between the underdogs and the Cobras team above. But somehow, someway, both were knocked out in the semifinals, the underdogs by the Bison. This was without a doubt the best chance the u-dogs ever had at a title and fell shy of expectations as always.

3. JAL 12 Lynx - Roster: Jordan Halverson, Stephen Todd, Anthony Nusbaum

Regular season: 2-1, 2nd in AC Playoffs: Lost in AC Finals

The most recent Lynx team was maybe the franchise's best one ever, but in order to win the cup they would have had to beat the best team ever in the Express. Perhaps it was just a wrong place wrong time situation. The only reason they lost a regular season game was because they were already locked into their playoff spot and rested Halverson's arm. In the AC Finals the Lynx had a 3-1 lead over the Express in the 4th inning, but ended up losing 4-3 in the fifth.

4. JAL 10 Cobras - Roster: Michael Sullivan, Cale Johnson

Regular season: 3-0, 1st Playoffs: Lost in Semifinals

Best regular season performance of all time in the JAL? Statistically, yes. This Cobras team not only went 3-0, but did so with a combined score vs their opponents of 27-2. So where did it all go wrong? Pre-tournament the Rapids were expected to contend for the title, but had an awful regular season outing of 1-2, which still managed to get them in the playoffs, but as the bottom seed and faced against the Cobras. In the playoffs, beginning with that game, the Rapids found their groove behind Ty Johnson's MVP winning performance at pitcher. The Cobras lost 0-6.

5. JAL 11 Lynx - Roster: Jordan Halverson, Stephen Todd, Tierney Uhlenkott

Regular season: 2-1, 1st Playoffs: Lost in WWCD

The JAL 11 Lynx are surprisingly the only team on this list that actually made it to the cup. Coming off JAL 10 in which the Lynx lost a tough 1-0 WWCD Cup to the Rapids, the team was motivated and ready to ake back the crown (JAL 9 champs). Jacob Rahn and the Bay Area Fog had other things to say, however. The Fog defeated the Lynx 3-1 in the cup, handing the Lynx back to back tournaments of being the runners up. If it weren't for the famous weather of JAL 11 would the outcome have been the same? A question that will be debated until the end of time...


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