8 Most Arrogant NHL Fan Bases, According to Public Perception

April WeinerCorrespondent IAugust 15, 2011

8 Most Arrogant NHL Fan Bases, According to Public Perception

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    Often, rankings are released about NHL fan bases: the best and the worst. But what about rankings of other attributes?

    One attribute is the arrogance of a team's fans. 

    All fan bases are made up of various types of fans, including some arrogant ones. However, there are a handful of franchises that are often perceived to be quite arrogant. 

    You’ll notice that all of these teams have been successful franchises, either in recent years or historically. With success, comes haters, criticism and perhaps some cockiness. 

    Here's an examination of the eight most arrogant fan bases, as perceived by the public. 

8. Boston Bruins

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    Boston fans are passionate by definition. Boston fans support all of their teams: the Boston Red Sox, New England Patriots, Boston Bruins and Boston Celtics.

    While some of their teams are overshadowed by the success of other teams, that just comes along with a city that routinely has successful teams.

    However, Bruins fans are always there to support their team loudly. 

    It may come off as arrogant (and some of the Boston signs this past postseason didn’t exactly help that arrogance image), but that’s just good-natured Boston ribbing and support.

7. Chicago Blackhawks

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    The Chicago Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup in 2010 and some would argue that the fan base was arrogant about their win, when they had a 49-year drought before their latest championship.

    However, anytime a team wins a championship, there will be some bandwagon fans who pretend they were there the whole time.

    That isn’t indicative of an entire fan base though.

    After all, United Center is one of the loudest arenas for opponents to play in, with their passionate fans coming out to support the team night in and night out.  

6. San Jose Sharks

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    The San Jose Sharks "Shark Tank" is one of the loudest arenas to play in, which might surprise some people considering that California isn't exactly a hot hockey market.

    The success of the team in recent years has brought forth some new fans, some arrogant ones. 

    Some would argue that Sharks fans have no reason to be so arrogant, since the team has yet to prove themselves in the playoffs.

    However, in the last 10 years, the franchise has significantly improved, appearing in three Western Conference Finals. 

    It's good that the fan base in San Jose is growing and that the city is proud of the success of their hockey team. 

5. Washington Capitals

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    The Washington Capitals fan base is often criticized. The Capitals have one of the loudest arenas in the league, but many argue that a few years ago or pre-Alex Ovechkin, the fan base was practically nonexistent.

    However,do the Caps fans actually not know or care about hockey?

    Or, is it that the success of the team has finally overshadowed other D.C. sports and allowed residents of the area to finally discover their love of hockey and the Caps?

    In the past couple of seasons, the Capitals were typically sold out; their season tickets sell out quickly as well.

    Whether the fans have been fans long-term or short-term, they're a passionate bunch. Every game at Verizon Center, there's a sea of red and the arena is so loud that one can barely hear themselves think.  

4. Pittsburgh Penguins

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    The Pittsburgh fanbase gets its fair share of criticism. While the team has a passionate fan base, many argue that the fans are just there now because the team is successful and that the team was so unsupported years ago that the franchise might have moved to Kansas City.

    However, now the Penguins routinely sell out all of their games and have the highest TV ratings in the U.S. markets.

    While it might be partly because of the on-ice product, the organization has experienced some personnel and management changes, making it a more fan-friendly franchise.

    Plus, they built a new world-class arena for their players and fans to enjoy and their fans have responded with their support.  

3. Vancouver Canucks

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    The Vancouver Canucks have never won a Stanley Cup championship. The have played in two Stanley Cup Finals in the past two decades and both times they have lost.

    After these losses, some in the city of Vancouver have participated in mass riots, including the highly-publicized riots back in June.

    This has contributed to the perception that the Canucks fanbase is arrogant.

    However, this is a Canadian team with passionate fans. One has to understand that hockey is Canada's sport and the one professional sport that they support in full.

    Plus, the fans that rioted after the SCF aren’t a real representation of what that fanbase is about.

    A better representation would be the Vancouver Green Men—passionate fans who support the team by dressing up and making the atmosphere in Vancouver enjoyable for the Vancouver faithful.

2. Montreal Canadiens

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    The Bell Centre and Montreal Canadiens fans get a lot of recognition as one of the loudest places to play according to many players. Others argue that the Habs fans are arrogant fans, who often boo their own team. 

     However, the Canadiens are the most successful franchise in NHL history and have the most Stanley Cup wins by a landslide. With that kind of success, their fans expect and demand that from their team. 

    While it’s been awhile since they have won another Cup, they still have some of the most passionate fans, who still come out to support their team even when things aren't going as well as they'd like.

    Plus, hockey is Canada’s sport. Unlike most American cities, who might have an NFL franchise, MLB franchise, NBA franchise in addition to their NHL franchise and taking most of the city’s attention, Canadian cities like Montreal have just an NHL franchise to support.

    Their support and passion for their team might come across as arrogant to an outsider, but for the majority of the fanbase, its more passion than arrogance.

1. Toronto Maple Leafs

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    Many would argue that Toronto Maple Leafs fans are some of the most arrogant fans in the NHL.

    Maple Leafs fans would come back with their team's Stanley Cup championships, but the retort would be “Yeah, when’s the last time you won?”

    It makes sense that one of the most successful franchises in history and one of the most loyal fan bases would garner some criticism.

    However, is the Toronto fanbase really arrogant or simply passionate and cognizant of the franchise’s history and proud of it?

    It's probably the latter.

    After all, the Leafs are the most valuable NHL team, typically have the highest TV ratings and still manage to sell out every game each season, despite not having made the playoffs since before the lockout.

    That's not arrogance, that's pride and loyalty.