Every NBA Team's Top Celebrity Fan
With the NBA season upon us, and with the other Big Three sports already covered, it's time to find out who is the top celebrity fan of each NBA team.
Some celebrities are completely obvious, like Spike Lee and Will Smith, others, even the celebrity stalkers will be shocked by.
From the Atlantic to the Pacific Division, here are the top celebrity fans of each team.
Boston Celtics: Matt Damon
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Being from Boston almost automatically makes you a fan of any Boston sports team.
That applies to Matt Damon, who is the most recognizable celebrity Celtics fan.
The star of Good Will Hunting and several other famous films was seen at the 2008 NBA finals rooting for his beloved team in a Celtics hat...at the Staples Center.
New Jersey Nets: Kim Kardashian
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The Keeping it Up with the Kardashians co-star did the ultimate sign of team loyalty, marrying boyfriend and Nets player Kris Humphries over the summer.
The marriage didn't last, however.
Despite the divorce, you can expect Kim to be at plenty of Nets games this year, cheering on her ex-hubby.
New York Knicks: Spike Lee
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Spike Lee is, to put it delicately, obsessed with the Knickerbockers.
The film director has been going to games for over 20 years, and hasn't missed a beat.
Among his more famous instances of his fan loyalty were during the 1995 NBA playoffs, when he verbally sparred with the famous Knick Killer, Reggie Miller.
We can always expect some colorful display from the crazy, bespectacled Lee when he's at Madison Square Garden.
Philadelphia 76ers: Will Smith
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Will Smith is famous for his role as the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, and his music career. He is multi-talented, and, for that matter, a Philadelphia native.
Smith was seen at the 2001 NBA Finals when the Philadelphia 76ers lost to the Los Angeles Lakers.
So it wouldn't come as a surprise when he purchased a minority stake in his beloved team during the NBA lockout, continuing the trend of celebrities buying into their favorite clubs.
Toronto Raptors: Samuel L. Jackson
Yes, there are people other than Justin Bieber, Drake, and any Canadian hockey player who like the Raptors. Most notable is Samuel L. Jackson, of Snakes on a Plane, Star Wars, and Jackie Brown.
In a scene in Jackie Brown, Jackson was carrying a bag with the old Raptors logo on it.
Nearly a decade later, fans noticed him, while on break from filming Jumper, enjoying a few Raptors games.
Chicago Bulls: Barack Obama
The rule of thumb is, if the President of the United States is a fan, he automatically becomes the team's First Fan.
Obama, who was a Senator for Illinois before becoming president, roots for any team in Chicago as his first team. This includes the White Sox, Bears and Bulls.
Though he has spent possibly the least time in the White House out of any president, his duties as a leader prevent him from going to any Bulls games, so like me, he's stuck with the Washington Wizards.
Cleveland Cavaliers: Usher
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Yes, Usher. Usher is the biggest Cleveland Cavaliers fan in terms of fame. He also owns part of the team, like Will Smith and the 76ers and Jay-Z and the Nets.
Usher's devotion to his beloved Cavs goes to a bet he placed with George Lopez, in which he bet his Cavaliers would go father than Lopez's Lakers, in the 2010 playoffs.
If Lopez's Lakers made it farther, the singer would have to put a Lakers jersey on his Wax museum figure. If the Cavs went farther, Lopez would have had to do a monologue in the Moondog (that's the mascot for the Cavs) costume.
Unfortunately, the Lakers went further.
Detroit Pistons: Eminem
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The Real Slim Shady was born and raised in Detroit. He made a movie about a young rapper in Detroit. It's common knowledge that he is a Detroit sports fan.
Whether it's the Tigers, Lions, Red Wings or Pistons, you can almost be certain Eminem will be at a game.
Eminem also was at the 2005 NBA Finals, if that doesn't sway you enough.
Indiana Pacers: Jared Fogle
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The face of the Subway Diet is also the celebrity face of the Indiana Pacers. Fogle, who is an Indiana native, was once a Pacers season ticket holder.
Though it is unknown if he still goes to games, the adage goes like this: Once a Pacer, always a Pacer.
Milwaukee Bucks: Kurtwood Smith (As Red Forman)
There are no real Milwaukee Bucks celebrity fans, so I went for the next best thing, a character from a TV show.
Red Forman is the father in That 70's Show. He's a Wisconsin sports fan, from the Bucks, to the Packers, to the Brewers, although the only episode involving sports in the show was an episode where Forman took the kids to a Packers game and Eric (Topher Grace) fought a Packer fan because he was wearing a Bears jersey, for whatever reason, we will never know.
And that's the only celebrity Bucks fan.
Atlanta Hawks: Lil' Jon
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The Atlanta Hawks are one of the most popular teams in the NBA among musicians, especially rappers. Guys like Jermaine Dupri, Bow Wow, T.I and Young Jeezy are among the fans.
However, it is Lil' Jon who takes the top celebrity fan honor. If anyone ever saw the music video, Welcome to Atlanta (Coast to Coast Remix), you would see in the Atlanta portion of the video Lil' Jon and a bunch of Atlanta celebrities and dancers dancing in front of a nightclub in various Atlanta sports jerseys, including Hawks jerseys.
Plus, with the loss of Lil' Jon's favorite hockey team to Winnipeg, you can bet that he's going to focus more on the Hawks.
Charlotte Bobcats: Nelly
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Yet another case of a (former) celebrity co-owner. Nelly was part-owner of the Charlotte Bobcats, before Michael Jordan bought the team from him and BET founder Bob Johnson.
Nelly may not be a co-owner anymore, but that shouldn't affect his relationship with the team.
Miami Heat: Jimmy Buffett
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Jimmy Buffett is known for Margaritaville and Cheeseburger in Paradise, both the songs and the business ventures. What else is known about him is that he is a Heat fan. He sings the national anthem for the team on occasion.
Buffett famously was ejected from a Miami Heat game back in the 1990s when, believing his team was getting the shaft from the referees, repeatedly hurled insults at the officials. Coach Pat Riley called for his removal.
Orlando Magic: Tamia
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Yet another case of a wife of a player. Tamia, a vocalist, met and married Grant Hill while he was in Orlando, and became a de-facto Magic fan.
While she and her husband moved out to Phoenix, it still makes sense to call her a fan because Orlando really doesn't have anyone else.
Washington Wizards: Wale
Wale is an up-and-coming rapper from the DC area. He is popular with the locals, and just recently gained some national attention with the release of his new mix tape.
Wale is also a huge fan of the Wizards, to the point where he served as the entertainment for them at Wizards Fan Fest (I know because I was there).
Dallas Mavericks: Jessica Simpson
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Maybe it's the fact that she often went to games with her then-boyfriend Tony Romo, maybe its the fact that she once dressed up like a Mavs cheerleader.
You can basically say that the singer is definitely the biggest celebrity Mavericks fan, aside from Mark Cuban, who is the full owner of the team.
Houston Rockets: The Back Dorm Boys
The trio of YouTube celebrities from China is known for their fanship of the Rockets, in particular, Yao Ming.
In almost all their videos, they wore their Rockets jerseys while lip-synching to Backstreet Boys and other pop songs.
Memphis Grizzlies: The Tuohy Family
As documented in the book, The Blind Side, Sean Tuohy was a former college basketball and NBA player who eventually, through several fast-food chains, made a successful living. He is also an announcer for the Grizzlies.
It was also mentioned in the book that Michael Oher and his adopted siblings could have gone to games whenever they wanted.
No mention is made as to whether Leigh Anne followed her husband and his work.
New Orleans Hornets: Lil' Wayne
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Lil' Wayne is a N'awlins rapper, and as a N'awlins rapper, he is a fan of their sports teams. While more devoted to the Saints, even referencing them in his lyrics, he is also a Hornets fan.
Wayne has been to several Hornets games, sitting both court side and in a luxury box. He also has had concerts at the New Orleans Arena.
Controversy has arisen though, as people have claimed that Wayne is a bandwagoner, having also rooted for the Miami Heat and Dallas Mavericks during the NBA finals.
San Antonio Spurs: Eva Longoria
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Eva Longoria was married to Tony Parker, one of the Spurs star players, until this year, when she divorced Tony Parker.
Nonetheless, the Desperate Housewives star is likely to stay a Spurs fan. after all, she is a native of Corpus Christi, which is close.
Denver Nuggets: Trey Parker and Matt Stone
One thing you can always count on is that South Park's creators are the biggest celebrity fans of all Colorado-area sports teams.
Although more emphasis is on the Broncos, the duo inserted a couple references to a South Park episode, when one of the characters mentioned, after getting a surgical procedure to make him taller and "blacker," that he wanted to play for the Denver Nuggets.
Minnesota Timberwolves: Craig Kilborn
Craig Kilborn is a former TV personality. He worked on SportsCenter, was the original host of The Daily Show, and also was the former host of the Late Late Show.
Kilborn's fandom of the Timberwolves was made evident when in 2003, he was given a chance to practice with the team.
He returned the favor by having them on his show.
Oklahoma City Thunder: Sam Bradford
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Oklahoma City basketball is still kind of new, to the point where they have very few celebrity fans.
However, one of the few they do have is Sam Bradford, the Heisman winner from Oklahoma and starting quarterback for the Rams.
Bradford has occasionally been spotted at Thunder games during the offseason, and he and Thunder Big Man, are among Fortune Magazine's 50 fortunate people.
Portland Trail Blazers: Elizabeth Banks
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Elizabeth Banks is an actress. She's been in such films as Invincible, and Seabiscuit.
Although a Philly girl, she is a Blazers fan, thanks in part to her husband, producer Max Handelman.
Utah Jazz: David Archuleta
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Like Jared Fogle and the Pacers, and Sam Bradford and the Thunder, David Archuleta, former American Idol contestant and Salt Lake City resident, is a fan of the Jazz.
Although not much has been reported on the singer as of late, he did sing the national anthem for them as part of his Idol homecoming, and has been to several games.
Golden State Warriors: Dusty Baker
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The Cincinnati Reds manager, best known for his tenure in the Bay Area, is a fan of the Warriors, and has confirmed it in interviews.
He said in a 2007 interview that he was disappointed to not see a crucial Warriors victory over the Dallas Mavericks, when the two met in the playoffs.
Los Angeles Clippers: Frankie Muniz
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Everybody's favorite 1990's kid from Malcolm in the Middle is the biggest Los Angeles Clippers fan.
Even when he grew up in New Jersey, he said that he "just was a Clippers fan" and "hates the Lakers."
Muniz had the chance to play on the Celebrity All-Star team back in February in Los Angeles, when the Clippers played host.
In short, he is a very big Clippers fan.
Los Angeles Lakers: Jack Nicholson
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The easy way out of this is to say that almost every celebrity in Los Angeles loves the Lakers, or I could have gone with Khloe Kardashian, but then her hubby was traded to Dallas.
Fortunately, there is one fan who rises above the rest, and his name is Jack Nicholson.
Nicholson, known for such films as The Shining, One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, and the Batman films, has been a Laker fan for more than 40 years, going back to the days of Jerry West.
His Laker longevity is among the longest for celebrity fans, and his film contract demands, which include filming around the Lakers home schedule, are quite famous.
In short, Nicholson is the greatest of the celebrity fans.
Phoenix Suns: Alice Cooper
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Alice Cooper, famous as a singer for songs like School's Out, is an Arizona sports fan. He loves the Diamondbacks, the Coyotes and the Suns.
What's interesting to know is that he has been a fan of the Suns since the team's inception, having been in high school when the team started play.
According to him, his three favorite players were Paul Westphal, Tom Chambers and Kevin Johnson.
Sacramento Kings: Tom Virtue (as Steve Stevens)
The last team on the list doesn't have a real celebrity fan, however, like the Bucks, they do have a fictitious fan in Tom Virtue's character of Steve Stevens in the old Disney TV series, Even Stevens.
Even Stevens only makes mention of the Kings once, in which Steve says that he was at a Kings game, decked in face paint and waving his foam finger around.
Definitely tells you the Kings should move to Anaheim.