The Top 10 Worst Fanbases In Sports Right Now

Ian ZymarakisSenior Analyst IMay 16, 2008

Since the article came out on Bleacher Report on how Utah fans are disgusting, I thought about doing two articles, one on the worst fans and one for the best fans in all of sports.

To make the list of worst fans, I took into account attendance, bandwagon fans, and mannerisms at the games, among other things.

Here is my list of the top-10 worst fans in all of sports.

Starting with No. 10:

10. Detroit Fans

Blame it on the poor economy in Detroit or blame it on the performance on a couple of teams within the city. But the fans of Detroit make it onto this list.

The Detroit Red Wings are about to clinch a spot in the Stanley Cup Finals and they can't sell out Joe Louis arena even this late into the playoffs. Seats are empty all over the arena, so bad that seats around the glass are empty. The worst part is that many fans have tickets to the game, they just choose not to go, which says it all right there.

The Lions have been horrible for years, but they have also been boo'ed by their own fans for years as well. The boos have become more of an attribute to being a Lions fan, more than cheering.

And who could forget the fight that took place that one fateful night when the Pacers fought the entire Pistons crowd? Many fans are loyal in Detroit, but many are just downright awful.

9. Seattle Fans

It's no surprise the Sonics will be moving away from Seattle; the fans can cry all they want about how they love the Sonics but they don't have much of a case: The Sonics ranked 28th in average attendance this past season.

Bad team or not, if your team is up for being moved to another state, you need to get out there and support them; it didn't do them any good to not show up to the games but then hold protests to keep the Sonics in Seattle.

The Seahawks sell out every game, but then again they are a very good football team. Of course people are going to show up. The Mariners are 18th in avergage attendance this season, filling their ballpark just over 54.5 percent each game. That isn't good at all. Even though they have started off slow, they have a good roster there in Seattle; it's just nobody wants to go to the games to see them.

Instead of sitting around waiting for the Mariners to start playing some solid baseball, why not go to the games now and support them everyday to pump their spirits up a bit?

8. Charlotte Bobcats Fans

You would think a city that lost an NBA team before (the Hornets) would try to change its ways and come out to support the new team that was brought in.

Well, whoever thought that was dead wrong.

The Bobcats ranked 24th in average attendance this past season. Since being given an NBA team again in Charlotte, the Bobcats have been in the bottom ten of NBA attendance since their inception. This looks more like a city that has taken for granted the second chance it received from the NBA and isn't cherishing it.

Sure the team isn't that great, but with a new arena and a new team with a nice young roster, you must get out and support the team; show the NBA you deserved to be given a second chance with an NBA franchise.

7. New Orleans Hornets Fans

Ok, so maybe this isn't fair to put them here because of how down the whole area is after what took place with Hurricane Katrina, but when your team is challenging for an NBA title and can still only manage 26th in average home attendance, then there is a serious problem. Especially when the Saints sell out every home game across the street at the Super Dome.

Maybe New Orleans isn't a basketball city. That's fine, but when the NBA hands you a team because of poor attendance in the previous city, you owe it to the league to show up to the games, not wait till the playoffs to jump on the bandwagon and wear your yellow t-shirts that they hand out to make it look like you have been there all season.

6. Indianapolis Colts and Indiana Pacers Fans

One team just won a Super Bowl and is always one of the best teams in the NFL, the other has some basketball history and plays in one of the nicest arenas in the NBA. What does that equal? Poor attendance for both teams.

The Pacers and Colts were dead last this past season in the NBA and NFL in average attendance. Sure, the Colts play/played in a smaller stadium last year, but even if you go by average capacity each game they were only 25th in the NFL with an average 95.1 percent capacity.

A new change of scenery for the Colts will definitely help attendance next season as they will be moving into a brand new stadium. The Pacers could be in trouble fan-wise, especially if they continue to miss the playoffs in the weak Eastern Conference.

5. Arizona Fans

Some of the best sports venues in the country are in Arizona, as well as a couple very good teams in the Suns and the Diamondbacks. The Suns have no problem selling out as they are the jewel of Arizona sports.

The D-backs, however, even with a World Series title and the current best record in MLB, get no respect from Arizona fans, sitting at 17th in average attendance, filling Chase Field each game to 56.7 percent capacity.

The Phoenix Coyotes, even with a brand new facility that is incredible in Westgate, were 29th out of 30 NHL teams in average attendance, and that is with a young improved roster that challenged for a playoff spot most of the season. There is a problem when fans show up wanting to see Wayne Gretzky stand on the bench rather than the actual hockey game that's taking place.

The Cardinals have always been the joke of Arizona sports, but are now improving and, with a new stadium, brought fan support, but how long until the fans start leaving because the team isn't winning anything? My guess would be this season, especially since last season attendance fell toward the end of the season when the Cards were out of playoff contention.

Arizona fans are some of the biggest bandwagon fans in the country, I feel; many will talk about how they love the teams but then say they never attend the games—that's a problem.

4. Atlanta Braves and Atlanta Hawks Fans

The winner for biggest bandwagon jump of the season I think goes to the fans of the Atlanta Hawks, rarely selling out their arena if at all the entire season was a problem, but finally, when the team made the playoffs for the first time in nine years, the fans came.

What I found funny was how into the game the fans were; where were they at the beginning of the season when the Hawks weren't in the playoff race?

The Atlanta Braves have been successful for years, but maybe their fans got a little too greedy. When the team struggles to sell tickets for the NLDS, there may be a problem of greedy fans that only expect the best.

Now that the Braves are not guaranteed a playoff spot, will fans stop showing up? The question is up in the air, as the Braves average only a 59-percent capacity rate at home games thus far this season.

3. Philadelphia Fans

No doubt about it, Philly sports fans are very loyal to their teams; it's the way they act at the events that gets them on this list.

Cheering for opposing team player injuries, shouting obscenities at players and other negative items are just some of the attributes that Philly fans are known by. Its one thing to cheer for an opposing player who gets up after being injured, it's another to cheer when the player gets hurt.

One memory that comes to mind is when Michael Irvin hurt his neck at the old Eagles stadium, Philly fans stood up and cheered the injury. This might've been because it was the Cowboys the Eagles were playing, but either way its wrong.

For such great and loyal sports fans the respect of Philly fans goes down for many because of their behavior at games, not because of their loyalty to their teams.

2. New York Fans

Many fans in New York are seen as bandwagon fans; I find it hard to believe that you could honestly be a fan of both the Yankees and Mets or the Giants and Jets, but many New Yorkers pull this off.

Many New Yorkers are accused of being bandwagon fans, and those could be rightful statements, especially when a Mets fan may jump from the their team to the Yankees when the playoffs come around and their team may not be in it anymore, but another New York team is.

Not many places can say they house so many sports teams, but New York does; it's a shame because there are many great fans in New York, they just get accused of cheering for the wrong reasons.

If the Yankees weren't good, would fans still show up to their games? New York fans much like Atlanta Braves fans expect too much from their teams when in reality their teams aren't the best at any of the sports.

The Knicks haven't won in decades, yet there is such a demand to win now. Now with the Giants winning the Super Bowl, how many Jets fans do you think were cheering for the Giants because it was New York? I am sure quite a few were.

Don't get me wrong, many New York Fans are great, but they can't cross over from team to team because to me, as a New Yorker, I dislike the Mets and the Jets and I could never cheer for either of those teams should the Yankees or the Giants not be in the playoffs when the other two teams are.

1. Los Angeles Fans

I guess the term "come early and stay late" doesn't apply to L.A. fans, as many come late and leave early. In one of the most famous video footage in sports history, Kirk Gibson hobbling around the bases after hiting that pinch-hit homer in the 1988 World Series, the fact it is still talked about how you could see cars leaving the ballpark rather than the homer is very embarrassing.

L.A. fans can be very loyal, but how loyal can you be when many of your fans are Hollywood-ites just looking for a photo op. or there for a night out on the town?

When one team averages a larger home attendance than another team in the same sport that plays in the same arena, there could be a sense of being a bandwagon.

For a city that desperately wants a football team back, fans in LA are going to have to show more loyalty to their teams than just showing up whenever and leaving early to make sure they beat the parking lot traffic.

Sports are great, but it's a shame when fans become bandwagon fans or don't appreciate the sport in general, because at any time the team and the sport could be pulled from your city and shipped somewhere else, just like that.

Just ask the fans of the Seattle Sonics, or even the Montreal Expos.


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