2010-2011 NBA Season: Power Ranking the Fan Bases for All 30 NBA Teams

Ryan VirginCorrespondent IOctober 25, 2010

2010-2011 NBA Season: Power Ranking the Fan Bases for All 30 NBA Teams

0 of 31

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    Let's be honest, every NBA franchise thinks that they have the best fans in the world. Now, we all know that we are, at the very least, slightly biased towards our hometown NBA teams, so when push comes to shove, you have to look at the facts.

    Which teams get the most people at their games night in and night out? Sure, the true test of a good fan base is how passionate they are, but that is very difficult to measure.

    So what I have done with this list is power rank all 30 NBA teams by their fan base with passion, attendance and sheer size, all as factors.

    So, thank you for reading and please enjoy!

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report


Memphis Grizzlies

1 of 31

    NEW ORLEANS - MARCH 03:  O.J. Mayo #32 and Marc Gasol #33 hold back Rudy Gay #22 of the Memphis Grizzlies after drawing a technical foul for arguing with a referee during the game against the New Orleans Hornets at the New Orleans Arena on March 3, 2010 i
    Chris Graythen/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    Considering how difficult it is to pick and choose the worst NBA franchises in terms of fan support, I couldn't help but visualize the Memphis Grizzlies as one of the worst, if not the worst, in terms of fan support.

    I mean, you have three very good players on your roster. They are young, they are exciting and they play every single night. So, why is it so hard to go see a game or two?

    I mean, the Grizzlies franchise was doomed from the start. The move from Vancouver to Memphis was probably not the brightest move, and it assured that the team would struggle financially over its lifetime.

    It's difficult to say that one particular team receives the least amount of fan support, but in this case, can you really blame me?

    Last Years home attendance: 13,254 (3rd worst in the NBA), 74.4 percent of their capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Minnesota Timberwolves

2 of 31

    LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 04:  Luke Ridnour of the Minnesota Timberwolves in action during the NBA Europe Live match between the Los Angeles Lakers and the Minnesota Timberwolves at the O2 arena on October 4, 2010 in London, England.  (Photo by Clive Rose
    Clive Rose/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    Believe it or not, the Minnesota Timberwolves have a decent roster.

    Or... Well, at least they have a roster with players you can root for: Martell Webster, Kevin Love, Wesley Johnson, Darko, Flynn.

    I mean, the Timberwolves aren't completely out of talent, but they seem to be out of love from the fans.

    Sure, the Timberwolves really are at a disadvantage in terms of potential fans. They play in a market dominated by the Vikings and the Twins. But, that doesn't negate the fact that the Timberwolves organization continually finishes in the bottom five for ticket sales at home and on the road.

    Something needs to give.

    The best way to remedy poor ticket sales is winning, and unless the Wolves start winning tomorrow, I don't see them making any great strides anytime soon.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 15,101 (5th worst in the NBA), 78 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Toronto Raptors

3 of 31

    DALLAS - FEBRUARY 13:  DeMar DeRozan #10 of the Toronto Raptors goes up for a dunk during the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest on All-Star Saturday Night, part of 2010 NBA All-Star Weekend at American Airlines Center on February 13, 2010 in Dallas, Texas. NOTE TO
    Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Raptors barely managed to sneak their way into the top half of the attendance standings last year, and that was with Chris Bosh on the roster.

    So, where will they be at without him? Probably nowhere near there.

    On one hand, the Raptors are ready to begin the rebuilding process, but the other hand doesn't offer that kind of hope.

    The Raptors are going to be really bad next season and really bad teams usually have a hard time bringing in the fans.

    2010 Attendance: 17,897 (14th best in the league), 90.4 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Cleveland Cavaliers

4 of 31

    CLEVELAND - JULY 8:  Fans in Cleveland gather before the start of the LeBron James Television Special July 8, 2010 in Cleveland, Ohio. The two-time Most Valuable Player has the choice of remaining with the Cleveland Cavaliers or signing with a new team. (
    J.D. Pooley/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    Sorry Cleveland fans, your run as one of the NBA's most exciting teams is likely going to come to an end. 

    Oh, sorry, you expected to still sell out the Q with Mo Williams as your star? You were mistaken.

    Keep your chin up, Cleveland. Everyone will be rooting for you next season (That is, if they aren't rooting for the Miami Heat) because you have officially moved into the role of the underdog that got screwed by the hometown hero.

    Anyways, the Nation will probably root for you when the Cav's aren't playing their favorite team. But even with that, don't expect a lot of sellouts next season, because you probably won't be able to muster up very many wins to satisfy the masses.

    2010 Attendance: 20,562 (second best in the league), 100 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Charlotte Bobcats

5 of 31

    CHARLOTTE, NC - APRIL 26: Charlotte Bobcats principal owner Michael Jordan watches in disappointment as time runs down against the Orlando Magic at Time Warner Cable Arena on April 26, 2010 in Charlotte, North Carolina.  The Magic defeated the Bobcats 99-
    Brian A. Westerholt/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Bobcats fans will probably go to the games more so during the beginning of the season because they don't realize that this year's team is not last year's team.

    As it currently stands, the Bobcats aren't making the playoffs. They aren't making another magical run and they aren't going to surprise anyone next season.

    Right now, they are still going off of the fumes from last year, and once people realize that they aren't what they once were, I see them slowly rolling to a stop.

    Sorry, Jordan, your only success in the 2010-2011 season will have to be your presence on NBA 2k11.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 15,824 (22nd in the league), 82.9 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Washington Wizards

6 of 31

    NEW YORK - JUNE 24:  John Wall of Kentucky is drafted with the first pick by the Washington Wizards at Madison Square Garden on June 24, 2010 in New York City.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this ph
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Wizards were among the worst teams in the NBA last season in terms of attendance, and I don't blame 'em.

    Aside from the gun-toting Wizard (Gilbert Arenas), the Wizards really didn't have a ton going on. The pre-John Wall era was full of questions, not only about Gilbert's future, but of the rest of the team in general.

    I will concede that if everything goes right for the Wizards, they will eventually be a very good team. Those things that would have to go perfectly would be the development of Javale Mcgee into an All-Star center, getting Gilbert Arenas out of town for another good player or draft picks, the development of John Wall into a superstar player and finding either a very good small forward or developing one of their young power forwards into a third pillar-type player.

    Overall, the Wizards will probably need to conjure up some magic if they want to be competitive next season and probably even the season after that. But if everything goes right, there's nothing to say that the Wizards couldn't pull it off.

    Still, next season looks grim with respect to fan support.

    It's unlikely that they will be able to sell out many games, thus making them a lower level team in terms of fan support.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 16,204 (21st in the league), 80.4 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

New Orleans Hornets

7 of 31

    NEW ORLEANS - OCTOBER 13:  Head coach Monty Williams and Peja Stojakovic #16 of the New Orleans Hornets in action during the game against the Miami Heat at the New Orleans Arena on October 13, 2010 in New Orleans, Louisiana.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly
    Chris Graythen/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    Chris Paul or no Chris Paul, the Hornets aren't going to be a good team next season. Although it does help to have the best point guard in the league on your roster, it isn't going to make you a nationwide fan favorite in the next year.

    The Hornets have fallen from glory and I don't think an entirely healthy season from Chris Paul alone will be able to stop their descent.

    Looks like the Hornets will be playing in many empty venues in the 2010-2011 campaign.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 15,131 (23rd in the league), 88.5 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

New Jersey Nets

8 of 31

    NEW YORK - MAY 19:  New Jersey Nets Owner Mikhail Prokhorov and Communication Director Ellen Pinchuk addess the media during a press conference at the Four Seasons Hotel on May 19, 2010 in New York City.  (Photo by Mike Stobe/Getty Images)
    Mike Stobe/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The New Jersey Nets really, really sucked last season. Their attendance numbers really stunk and that is probably being kind.

    But with new ownership and an overall new feel to the organization, I can't help but think that the Nets will end up being something much better than they were last season.

    They've added new players to the roster and that, realistically, could add 10 wins to the 12 win total of last season, and the fans like wins.

    If there is anything surrounding the Net's organization, it is hope.

    Whether that be a false hope or a realistic and true hope, more fans will show up and support their hometown team because of it.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 13,103 (30th in the league), 69.1 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Sacramento Kings

9 of 31

    SACRAMENTO, CA - DECEMBER 23:  Tyreke Evans #13 of the Sacramento in action against the Cleveland Cavaliers during an NBA game at ARCO Arena on December 23, 2009 in Sacramento, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by dow
    Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Kings have a terrible arena, a poor team, and a market that is currently being strangled by the likes of the Lakers, the Warriors and the Clippers.

    So, is there room for the Kings in a crowded NBA market? Yeah, there could end up being room. But, it would take success on the Kings part to start that movement.

    There is talent on the Kings roster, but it will not be enough to propel them into the playoffs next season. Chances are that they will be playing in a few quiet stadiums next season and in all likelihood, they will have a hard time selling tickets throughout the season.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 13,254 (29th in the league), 76.5 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Philadelphia 76ers

10 of 31

    NEW YORK - JUNE 24:  Evan Turner of Ohio State stands with NBA Commisioner David Stern after being drafted by the Philadelphia 76ers second overall at Madison Square Garden on June 24, 2010 in New York City.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The 76ers are a difficult team to read. Are they on the rise, or are they on the decline? Do they have the pieces to be a playoff team, or will they be another team to fall flat on their face? Will their young talent end up becoming busts, or will they fulfill their potential?

    Let me just say one thing about the 76ers for next season. If they get Carmelo Anthony, they will be better off.

    Obviously.

    But, a superstar on the roster would also do loads for their fan base.

    Next season still looks grim.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 14,224 (26th in the league), 70 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Detroit Pistons

11 of 31

    NEW YORK - JUNE 24:  Gregory Monroe stands with NBA Commisioner David Stern after being drafted seventh by  the Detoit Pistons at Madison Square Garden on June 24, 2010 in New York, New York City.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    Detroit has a big stadium, a lot of history and a crappy team. So, what I see happening is that the team is able to sell tickets and get at least some people to show up night in and night out, but they will never be able to completely fill out a gym, and it is unlikely that they will see flocks of people, money in hand (begging to buy tickets), show up and add to their fanbase.

    Obviously, most teams with poor records end up having crappy attendance. Their history as an NBA franchise saves them from being amongst the worst, but I wouldn't expect a ton more than a top eight finish.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 18,751 (eighth in the league), 84.9 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Los Angeles Clippers

12 of 31

    LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 24:  (L-R) Cash Warren, Jessica Alba and Kid Rock are seen at a basketball game between the Detroit Pistons and the Los Angeles Clippers at Staples Center on February 24, 2010 in Los Angeles, California. The Clippers defeated th
    Jeff Gross/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Clippers are in a crowded market with a decent roster and not a lot of room for improvement on the ticket sales front.

    I see improvement on the roster and in the standings, but I doubt the Clippers will be able to find a ton more people to put in their seats.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 16,343 (20th in the league), 85.7 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Milwaukee Bucks

13 of 31

    ATLANTA - MAY 2:  Center Andrew Bogut #6 of the Milwaukee Bucks sits on the bench with an injury during Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals between the Milwaukee Bucks and the Atlanta Hawks during the 2010 NBA Playoffs at Philips Arena on M
    Mike Zarrilli/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Milwaukee Bucks are benefiting from an unexpectedly spectacular 2009-2010 campaign in which they realized that the point guard position would be locked up for years to come.

    Not only do they have a new sense of future security, they have utilized an entirely new fanbase with Brandon Jennings exploding onto the NBA picture with 52 points as a rookie.

    Not only do I know Brandon Jennings's name because of that, but I am sure they are in the minds of many casual NBA fans now as well.

    Really, if I am the Bucks ownership, I am thrilled with the direction and growing support for this young NBA franchise.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 15,108 (24th in the league), 80.7 percent of capacity

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Indiana Pacers

14 of 31

    NEW YORK - JUNE 24:  Paul George stands with NBA Commisioner David Stern after being drafted tenth by The Indiana Pacers at Madison Square Garden on June 24, 2010 in New York City.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading
    Al Bello/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    Believe it or not, the Indiana Pacers were much, much better than their record suggested last season. Danny Granger struggled with injuries and that really set the team back from the get-go.

    This season should be entirely different.

    If Granger is able to stay healthy, a realistic goal for the Pacers would be a playoff appearance. Not only do the Pacers get Granger back healthy, they add a very capable point guard to their roster.

    Collison will be a big part of what they do next season, and he will give fans a reason to come and pay their hard earned cash on a couple of midlevel tickets.

    The Pacers are in a position to surprise a lot of people next season, and that could end up translating into selling a few more tickets.

    2009-2010 NBA season: 14,202 (27th in the league), 78.2 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Phoenix Suns

15 of 31

    PHOENIX - OCTOBER 22:  Matt Janning #22 of the Phoenix Suns puts up a shot against the Denver Nuggets during the preseason NBA game at US Airways Center on October 22, 2010 in Phoenix, Arizona. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by
    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Phoenix Suns are another team that, come December or January, will really have no other major sports franchise to compete with.

    The Suns will not make another cinderella run to the Western Conference finals next season, but they should at least be able to make a decent run at the playoffs come February.

    As long as Steve Nash is still on the team, the Suns should benefit financially from the added Canadian support. 

    People will still buy tickets as long as the Suns are relevant, and since they aren't killing themselves with the market they are in, their fanbase should continue to grow with another season under their belts.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 17,648 (16th in the league), 95.8 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Atlanta Hawks

16 of 31

    ATLANTA - OCTOBER 21:  Joe Johnson #2 of the Atlanta Hawks walks over to hug LeBron James #6 of the Miami Heat after the Hawks 98-89 win at Philips Arena on October 21, 2010 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
    Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Hawks play in a big market, they have a pretty good team, they have a max salary player on the books and there really isn't a lot of competition right now in the Atlanta area. Sure, the Falcons are doing fairly decent, but once they are done, there really isn't another franchise to compete with.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 16,545 (18th in the league), 88.3 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Denver Nuggets

17 of 31

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Denver Nuggets have been very good as of recent, and that has brought them a decent amount of fan support.

    I'm sure we will see a decline if Carmelo Anthony decides to leave town.

    So for now, I have to leave them in the same spot they were last season (13th in terms of average attendance) until something pans out in Denver.

    Right now there is just too much instability.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 17,995 (13th in the league), 93.9 percent of Capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

New York Knicks

18 of 31

    CHICAGO - FEBRUARY 16: Danilo Gallinari #8 of the New York Knicks looks to pass as Kirk Hinrich #12 of the Chicago Bulls defends at the United Center on February 16, 2010 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bulls defeated the Knicks 118-85. NOTE TO USER: User expre
    Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The New York Knicks are in a HUGE basketball market. Not only are they one of the most recognizable teams in the world, but they are certainly a team with an enormous amount of name recognition and history.

    All three of those things most certainly translate into higher attendance numbers and a larger fanbase.

    But still, the Knicks really weren't a good team last season. They struggled in a weak Eastern Conference, and they really didn't have the type of players that you could grasp onto. (When was the last time they did?)

    I see the Knicks being a team that most people will at least keep one eye on throughout the regular season. But, I don't see them selling out every single game unless they are able to do something magical. (Carmelo Anthony, anyone?)

    Otherwise, they will probably sneak into the playoffs with the seventh or eighth seed and will probably end up being a non-factor in the ultimate picture.

    All things that don't end up helping the Knicks and their ticket sales.

    Even with that, the Knicks are still one of the biggest names in basketball and have enough history that they will be able to maintain one of the biggest fanbases in the world.

    Even if they are going to be mediocre next year.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Miami Heat

19 of 31

    MIAMI - OCTOBER 12:  Forward LeBron James #6 and Dwyane Wade #3 of the Miami Heat prior to playing CSKA Moscow on October 12, 2010 in Miami, Florida.  Miami heat won 96-85 over CSKA Moscow.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by do
    Marc Serota/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    I can't really say a ton about the Miami Heat's fanbase because we really don't know who is who.

    To be completely honest, I'm sure that the attendance will be off the charts in the 2010-2011 campaign, but I have to bump them down a tad because of all the sunny weather fans that have hopped on the bandwagon.

    All in all, it may seem weird to keep the Heat out of the top 10, but I have a hard time thinking otherwise when the most popular team is only popular once they start winning.

    Sorry, Heat fans, but you'll have to withstand the long haul to be considered as some of the best fans in the game.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 17,730 (15th in the league), 90.5 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Golden State Warriors

20 of 31

    MINNEAPOLIS, MN - APRIL 7: (L-R) Stephen Curry #30, Anthony Tolliver #44, Corey Maggette #50, Anthony Morrow #22, Chris Hunter #31 and Devean George #19 of the Golden State Warriors celebrate a win against the Minnesota Timberwolves following a basketball
    Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Golden State Warriors are a terrible team, but give the fans credit for showing up even though their team isn't meeting their standards.

    In fact, I would probably be ready to say that the Golden State Warriors have the best fan support for the number of wins they get year in and year out.

    Enough said.

    Pair that with the enormous market they are in and you have basketball gold (financially).

    Now, if only the Warriors could put a better team on the court...

    2009-2010 Attendance: 18,027 (11th in the league), 92 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Tenth: Dallas Mavericks

21 of 31

    DALLAS - APRIL 27:  Forward Dirk Nowitzki #41 of the Dallas Mavericks reacts during play against the San Antonio Spurs in Game Five of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2010 NBA Playoffs at American Airlines Center on April 27, 2010 in Dalla
    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Dallas Mavericks have had many years of success on the basketball court, and they have the fanbase to show for it.

    Dallas has the star power, the history, the respectable recent success and, most of all, they are ready to win now.

    The Dallas Mavericks are in a gigantic NBA market in Texas, and even though the NBA isn't the biggest game in town (pro, college and high school football all come first), they still manage to sell out almost every single home game.

    So, there is no reason we shouldn't expect anything less from the 2010-2011 Mavericks.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 19,994 (fourth in the league), 104.1 percent of their total capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Ninth: Boston Celtics

22 of 31

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    History, Titles, Hall of Famers... and current success.

    The Boston Celtics organization is the perfect mixture of past success and current success. They may be on the decline, but they have young players that are willing to carry the torch.

    Young, exciting players really do bring in the ticket sales, and I'm sure the fans realize that Rajon Rondo is their guy when things take a turn for the worse in a couple years.

    Fans like to have some kind of stability, and right now, the Celtics may not have an abundance of that, but they have something they can look forward to along with something they can hold onto right now.

    Attendance should be the same if not better next season, and I wouldn't expect their fanbase to diminish in any way.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 18,169 (ninth in the league), 97.6 percent.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Eighth: Orlando Magic

23 of 31

    TAMPA, FL - OCTOBER 22:  A fan of the Orlando Magic reacts to the game being cancelled due to a slippery court against the Miami Heat at the St. Pete Times Forum on October 22, 2010 in Tampa, Florida.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees
    J. Meric/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    Dwight Howard certainly is something that fans of any team would pay to see, so it is obvious that the Magic aren't having any trouble putting people in the seats.

    The only problem they have had in the past was finding an arena big enough for the fans. That shouldn't be a problem now that New Amway Arena has been opened and can seat over a thousand more people than in the previous arena.

    Not only should the team be able to sell more tickets, but they should receive a considerable amount of attention because of their brand new venue. Of course, that opens up an entirely new outlet of fan support, and they should see more people trying to get a look inside Amway just because it is something new.

    I see the Magic making a huge jump from where they were in ticket sales last season, but I don't really see their fanbase expanding. In fact, I see it in danger of decreasing because of the Miami Heat's emergence as a title contender.

    Still, in a list ordered by passion from the fans, I still view the Orlando Magic fanbase as one of the best in the game.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 17,461 (17th in the league), 100 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Seventh: San Antonio

24 of 31

    SAN ANTONIO - MAY 07: The San Antonio Spurs Coyote in Game Three of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2010 NBA Playoffs at AT&T Center on May 7, 2010 in San Antonio, Texas. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloadi
    Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    San Antonio is in an owner's paradise right now.

    No competition, good talent, a history of winning and a bunch of likable guys on the roster.

    That, my friend, is ticket sales gold.

    Not only do they sell a lot of tickets, but every game is sold out and filled with people who actually care about the outcome of the game.

    They are loud and they care enough to make their opinion known on a Wednesday afternoon while playing a crappy Eastern Conference team.

    That is the true test of a fan, and I'm sure the players in San Antonio will tell you that they have passed that test time and time again.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 18,089 (10th in the league), 97.4 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Sixth: Chicago Bulls

25 of 31

    CHICAGO - APRIL 25: Derrick Rose #1 of the Chicago Bulls drives to the basket over Shaquille O'Neal #33 of the Cleveland Cavaliers in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2010 NBA Playoffs at the United Center on April 25, 2010 in
    Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    In the 2009-2010 campaign, the Chicago Bulls had the best attendance in the NBA, ranking first in average attendance throughout the entire regular season.

    Obviously, the biggest part of their ticket sale success has to be because of the product they have put on the court, but it is also because they play in the one of the bigger stadiums in the league. They currently sit third in the NBA for total number of seats available, second is the Wachovia Center (76ers) and first is the palace of Auburn Hills (Detroit Pistons).

    But, since neither the 76ers or the Pistons are really all that good, the Bulls are able to be successful enough to snag the best attendance in the NBA.

    With that aside, I would like to make it abundantly clear that the Chicago Bulls fanbase is easily the luckiest fanbase in the league.

    You know... lucky enough to witness Michael Jordan, the greatest player to ever play the game, play in their own back yard.

    That alone is enough to put them right up there with the rest of 'em.

    Not to mention that the current Bulls fans are fairly rowdy themselves.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 20,725 (first in the league), 99.1 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Fifth: Los Angeles Lakers

26 of 31

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Lakers are arguably the most recognizable name in basketball and with that comes a great amount of fan support.

    I have trouble with putting the Lakers way up at the top, because I feel that the majority of their fans only follow the team because they are the best.

    If you watch a game that is being played at the Staples Center, you will notice that the crowd is dead silent up until the third or fourth quarter. Every single game I have seen is like this, and it just rubs me the wrong way.

    The Lakers may be the biggest name in basketball right now in the United States, but you wouldn't get that impression from watching a game on TV (or in the stadium I can imagine).

    They may sell out every single game, but I doubt the noise levels come close to some of the other passionate fan bases.

    With that said, there is no disputing that the Lakers are the most popular name in the NBA today, and that is something that sends a lot of fans your way.

    Still, for this list, I have to consider passion to be worth more than selling out.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 18,997 (seventh in the league), 99.7 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

Fourth: Oklahoma City Thunder

27 of 31

    OKLAHOMA CITY - APRIL 30: Kobe Bryant #24 of the Los Angeles Lakers shoots the ball against Thabo Sefolosha #2 of the Oklahoma City Thunder during Game Six of the Western Conference Quarterfinals of the 2010 NBA Playoffs on April 30, 2010 at the Ford Cent
    Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The Oklahoma City Thunder are very much in a good position to expand their current fanbase over the years. Not only is it currently thriving, but to think that they have only been there for two-three years, we should only expect that their roots will continue to dig into the Oklahoma City fanbase.

    They are in a great position to slowly expand what they already have over the next 10 years.

    They do have a lot of fans, but the fans they have are passionate about every aspect of the team, and that is really what matters.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 18,003 (12th in the league), 98.9 percent of capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

1st (tie): Houston Rockets

28 of 31

    LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 12:  Aaron Brooks #0 of the Houston Rockets looks on against the Los Angeles Lakers in Game Five of the Western Conference Semifinals during the 2009 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center on May 12, 2009 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO
    Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    In terms of having the largest overall fanbase in the world, it is fairly easy to say that Yao Mi... I mean, the Houston Rockets come out on top.

    I mean, when you play in a large basketball market on a regular basis, in the biggest sports market in the world, and on top of that you have the most populous country in the world following your every move...

    In terms of fan support, can you really ask for any more?

    And that is why I have them in a three-way tie for first place. Their attendance may not be the best, but it is decent and considering that their best player and franchise cornerstone was out for the entire season, you can't really expect sellout numbers across the board.

    I mean, it's not like the Rockets are able to give each fan a chance to see a game. Because a third or so live halfway around the world (just an estimate).

    2009-2010 Attendance: 16,528 (19th in the league), 91.6 percent of maximum capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

1st (tie): Portland Trail Blazers

29 of 31

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    Before the Trail Blazers' early decade stumbles, this proud organization had a rambunctious fan base. 
    They recorded 814 consecutive sellouts, the most in professional sports history (of any kind). This streak lasted through three decades (1977-1995), but sadly ended just as soon as the Jail Blazer era began.

    Throughout the Jail Blazer era, the fans were rowdy, but that faded just as quickly as the players were getting arrested. This era, led by Zach Randolph, Darius Miles and Rasheed Wallace ended when the Trail Blazers drafted Brandon Roy and LaMarcus Aldridge in the 2006 NBA Draft. Since then, they have accumulated 103 consecutive sellouts and counting.

    Not only do the Blazers sell out every night, they have a passionate and knowledgeable fan base. They cheer without being prompted and make the Rose Garden one of the most difficult places to play in the NBA.

    Interesting Factoids about the Arena: 
    Built by Microsoft co-owner and Trail Blazers owner Paul Allen.

    Opened in 1995, the facility cost $262 million total and seats 20,630 people.

    The facility features a full apartment, including a full bathroom in the rafters of the arena itself.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 20,497 (third in the league), 102.6 percent of max capacity.

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

1st (tie): Utah Jazz

30 of 31

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report

    The daunting atmosphere of the Energy Solutions Arena starts with the intimidating placement of the fans. Standing at center court, it feels that if someone were to fall from their seat in the upper decks, they would land within feet of the Utah Jazz players.

    That's exactly what makes this arena one of the most difficult places to play for the road team.

    The Utah Jazz fans are really a thorn in the side of the road team, and that is exactly what you want out of your sixth man.

    2009-2010 Attendance: 19,378 (sixth in the league), 97.3 percent of max. capacity. 

    More News, Notes, and Commentary at Rip City Report