The NBA has grown into one of the biggest operations in the entire world, drawing in millions of fans from around the globe. With almost every fan choosing a team to associate with, every NBA team has built a fanbase. Having loyal fans that will stick with the organization through good times and bad, is incredibly important to the well being of a team and their city.
We have seen in every sport bandwagon fans, who only love the hottest new team. However, it's the ones who root for their favorite team every single year, is the deciding factor between a fan, and a loyal fan. There is no doubt some variation between the number of loyal fans each NBA team has. Some pretty impressive advantages can come from having rowdy fans. The saying "home court advantage" really has some clout when looking at the effects great fans have on their teams. There just is something about having to walk into your opponents building that is packed with screaming fans, that makes winning away from home that much harder. Add in the fact that many home teams will heckle the opposing players in high pressure situations, and you have an added bonus.
In this article, we will be power ranking every NBA fanbase by how loyal they are to their respective team. Looking at multiple factors such as the attendance statistics, home record, and the overall support of the fans throughout the years, we will be power ranking every NBA fanbase by loyalty. So wherever your team is on this list, I bet you're one of the loyal ones! As anybody reading this article probably is.
Here is the power ranking of every NBA franchise based on loyalty. As always, if you don't agree with the way that we have this article ranked, feel free to let us know your opinions in the comments below.
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30 Denver Nuggets
The Nuggets tried hard this year to get a playoff birth, but sadly, it was to no avail. With a record of 33-49, the Nuggets were not at the bottom of the standings in the NBA. However, the Nuggets had the worst attendance of fans this year, which is odd considering their team was not that bad. Maybe Denver just isn't a basketball city, as the Nuggets have some great young talent that could draw bigger crowds anywhere else. Maybe with a few more fans at their home games, the Nuggets could have been able to make the playoffs.
29 Brooklyn Nets
In the beginning of the new look Nets created in 2012, Brooklyn fans were quick to rock the black and white team colors as the excitement of the new team was noticeable. Now, as one of the worst teams in the league, a lot of fans of the Nets were quick to hop off the bandwagon, as they began to realize the Brooklyn team will not be ready to compete for a couple years. Brooklyn has a lot of heart, but their attendance this year was dismal to say the least.
28 Milwaukee Bucks
With their playoff berth last year, the Bucks disappointing season this year was a blow to many fans across Milwaukee. The Bucks were supposed to be a much improved team this year, with young players such as Giannis Antetokounmpo and Jabari Parker developing quickly. However, the Bucks season this year was not what anybody was expecting. The increase in losses scared away fans, as the Bucks excitement that was seen a year ago was quickly gone after the team's struggles.
27 Minnesota Timberwolves
With some of the best young talent in the NBA, the Wolves have a lot of potential to be the best team in the league in a few years. The Wolves have never been a very dominant team, so we haven't seen any crazy turns outs for playoff games recently. The Wolves are the only team in the NBA with a better road record than their home record, which just shows the small impact Wolves' fans have on their team. However, on the verge of success, we are expected to see new waves of Timberwolves fans, some loyal and some not.
26 New Orleans Pelicans
New Orleans couldn't catch a break this year injury wise, and the fans didn't enjoy rooting for backups very much. With a disappointing season and low attendance rates, things didn't look to good for the Pelicans and their fanbase this year. Anthony Davis will be looking to rile up some more fans this season, as he looks to secure a playoff berth for the city of New Orleans. They should be able to bounce back next year, should they stay healthy.
25 Phoenix Suns
The Suns were on track to win a solid amount of games this year, but with the season ending injury to Eric Bledsoe, the hopes that fans had about this year was all but lost. With one of the worst home records in the entire NBA, the Suns season consisted of a lot of young player development, with not much love from the fans. The fans who did show up, probably bought season tickets before the season went down the tubes.
24 Memphis Grizzlies
Maybe it's just the style of play the Grizzlies have that makes being a fan of them such a hard thing to do. The Grizz didn't have much fan-fare this year, as most of their stars became injured during the season. The Grizzlies had trouble drawing in many attendees, as the ones who were loyal throughout the season saw them get swept quickly by the Spurs in the playoffs. The Grizzlies seem to be stuck as a good team that can't break the glass ceiling, which has to be frustrating for Memphis fans.
23 Orlando Magic
The Magic didn't do much to impress this year, and their playoff drought has isolated the few loyal fans they have. Young talent is apparent in Orlando, but the fanbase is still pretty small. Being overshadowed by the Heat for the most popular team in Florida, the Magic have one of the least loyal fanbases in the league, which is ironic considering they would have been on the opposite end of this list five years ago.
22 Atlanta Hawks
The Hawks are one of the best teams in the league, so it is odd to think their attendance rates are near the bottom of the spectrum. This makes it that much worse that even with a talented team, the Hawks just don't have many fans that love the team. With an aging team that was destroyed by the Cavs in the playoffs this year, loyal fans of the team may have to wait a pretty long time before the Hawks win a championship.
21 Cleveland Cavaliers
Even though the Cavaliers are one of the best teams in the league, the team does not have one of the best fanbases backing them. When LeBron left Cleveland, the fans were obviously hurt, showing their hate for LeBron immensely, even burning his jersey. After his departure, their arena was empty for years. Now with LeBron's return, fans immediately welcomed him back with open arms. Cavs fans even booed their own team during Tyronn Lue's coaching debut. Do they not realize how lucky they are to have one of the best teams in the league?
20 Sacramento Kings
Even with some good talent, the Kings have struggled making it to the playoffs, making many loyal fans begin to worry. Their home games didn't feel very exciting, as it seemed it was quiet enough that you could hear the Kings turmoil on the court between players! Well let's not go too far, but Kings fans deserve a winning basketball team, and time will only tell when they will get one. Fans were even worried for a while about their team being moved to Seattle before NBA owners voted to keep the Kings in Sacramento.
19 Miami Heat
Many considered Heat fans band-wagoners during the LeBron era in Miami, but even after his departure, the Heat fanbase is stronger than it ever has been. The Heat organization is very high in attendance rates, as they fill the American Airlines Arena to capacity every home game. Going to Game 7 twice in their playoff run this year, Heat fans made themselves present whether home or away as they cheered on their beloved team
18 Detroit Pistons
With a pretty good team to root for, it is surprising the Pistons attendance rates are pretty low. Detroit is not a very large market, but the fact that their fanfare is lower than teams much worse than them is a cause for concern. Detroit loves their sports teams, but this year they just couldn't get all the way behind their team. The team is a long way removed from the iconic teams and fans of the past 30 years.
17 Washington Wizards
The Wizards are another team who haven't seen much playoff life in their existence, but still, the Wizards have some pretty loyal fans. With great young players such as John Wall and Bradley Beal, the Wizards are looking to be a dominant team in the league soon. With the small possibility of Kevin Durant joining the team in the summer, loyal fans may just get the team they have always hoped for. Let's see how many more Wizards jerseys you'd see around the capital region.
16 Charlotte Hornets
With Charlotte being a basketball destination once again, the Hornets have done a good job of bringing in old and new fans of the organization together. Charlotte's playoff series versus the Heat showed that Hornets fans can really impact a basketball game in a positive way for their team. Only time will tell if this increase in fandom is due to the team coming home, or an actual vested interest of Charlotte residents.
15 Houston Rockets
The Rockets definitely have some loyal fans who have been watching even since the great Hakeem wore the jersey. The Rockets are not a very consistent team, but there are many people all over Houston who are loyal to the Rockets. With a rebuilding period possibly coming soon for the Rockets, this is when we will see who the loyal fans really are, and who just likes wearing a fake James Harden beard.
14 Indiana Pacers
The Pacers had a great season this year. With Paul George leading the charge, the Pacers pushed the Raptors to the brink in their seven game series. Home games for the Pacers made it hard for the opponent players to get into a rhythm, because the crowd was just so involved. Much like the Warriors, the "yellow out" that seems to happen every home game must make it very hard to concentrate on the rim.
13 Utah Jazz
When looking at the crowd attendance for this year, it was surprising to see the Jazz so high on the list. Fighting for a playoff spot until the very last game of the season, Jazz fans stuck with their team the entire season providing support for the organization. On a side note, Jazz fans were lucky enough to have Kobe Bryant play his last game against them as well. The Jazz have not had much success in recent years, so it was commendable for their fans to stick with them.
12 Los Angeles Lakers
Even with the Lakers awful season with a 17-65 record, fans of the Lakers showed their support at every game the Lakers played. Being such a large market, the Lakers have many fans all over the world, some new, and some are still fans of the team since their dominate days in the 80s.
The reason the Lakers aren't higher on this list, is because a multitude of their fans are people who do not know much about the team, except that they're the Lakers and they're supposed to love them. With the Lakers young talent and the organization ready to sign some big names in the offseason, the Lakers fan base will only grow from here.
11 Portland Trail Blazers
Since Portland is a smaller market area, it is impressive how many fans the Blazers have rooting for them. Damian Lillard has drawn in many new fans, and the rich history of Trail Blazer basketball has secured many loyal fans who have been invested in the team for years. The Blazers really do have some loyal fans, as evident by their arena being sold out nearly every game this year. It might help that the Blazers only have the Portland Timbers to compete with in terms of pro sports teams in the area.
10 Los Angeles Clippers
Considering the Lakers and the Clippers play in the same building, the fact that the Clippers had better attendance rate really shows the loyalty of their fans. Being the better team in Los Angeles, the Clippers have some very great fans who are ready to argue against any Lakers fans who think that the Clippers don't own the Los Angeles area. Keep in mind that many of these fans were fans of the Clippers when it wasn't cool to be a Clippers fan.
9 New York Knicks
New York loves their sports team, which is even evident with their basketball team even though they are struggling right now. New York is the biggest market in the country, meaning it is bursting at the seams with fans of the Knicks. Whether it is just the beautiful Madison Square Garden drawing in fans year after year, or it is just the love for the Knicks, playing a game away game against the Knicks is always incredibly challenging for traveling teams.
8 Philadelphia 76ers
Maybe I'm just being bias, but Philadelphia fans are some of the best fans in the world. Even with their team being the laughingstock of the league, many Sixers fans are excited for the future. Philadelphia fans have a history of being incredibly loyal no matter the sport, and with things looking bright for the City of Brotherly Love, the long waited await for a winning team is soon coming for fans of the Sixers.
7 Dallas Mavericks
Dallas has always had some of the best fans in the NBA. With their team not being a contender for the championship at this point, their fans still have a great love for their team, ranking third in all of the NBA in attendance this year. Texas loves their sports in general and the Mavs are no exception.
Never having a problem with loyal fans, Mark Cuban doesn't have to do much to keep Maverick fans cheering for this exciting team.
6 San Antonio Spurs
Spurs fans have really been spoiled considering their team has been successful for literally two decades. Filling up the AT&T Center every night for the Spurs, the team have never had problems with getting enough support from their fans. With the Spurs original bit three aging and the retirements coming soon, the loyalty of Spurs fans everywhere will be tested as they will most likely drop in the standings sooner or later.
5 Boston Celtics
It's no surprise Boston would be high on the list, considering the city's love for sports. The Celtics may have the most storied history in all of the NBA, so we expect them to have some pretty big fans. Celtics fans are some of the most loyal in the league, as they have bled green for decades no matter what team was assembled to represent them. The Celtics organization is one of the most prized possessions in Boston... for some very good reasons to say the least.
4 Toronto Raptors
Being a Raptors fan has a different feel to it than any other team in the league. Not only are they representing the city of Toronto, but they are also representing the country of Canada. This sense of pride for one's country adds a whole new aspect to being a loyal fan. The Raptors have long been more accessible to the people of Toronto than the Maple Leafs. With Leafs tickets being so expensive, a young loyal crowd has flocked to see their Raptors at the ACC.
The Raptors fanbase is growing incredibly fast, as all of Canada seems to be behind their lone NBA franchise.
3 Oklahoma City Thunder
The Thunder are one of the most exciting teams in the NBA. The tandem of Durant and Westbrook has generated a lot of buzz in OKC as the team's loyal fanbase grows and grows. Sadly being eliminated by the Warriors in an amazing seven game series, the Thunder will not be moving on to the NBA Finals despite the hopes of their fans. Thunder fans will be back and better than ever next season, as they look to bring the first championship to Oklahoma City. #ThunderUP
2 Chicago Bulls
Chicago Bulls fans have been apart of some incredible teams and heart-stopping moments. Ranging from Michael Jordan to a young and explosive Derrick Rose, Bulls fans have stuck it out through the thick and thin. Coming in at number one for attendance this past year, there is no question that Chicago values it's basketball team immensely. Bulls fans will root for their team, winning or not without a doubt.
1 Golden State Warriors
The Warriors had the greatest NBA season of all-time this year, and their fans were a big help in the efforts. Going an outstanding 39-2 at home, the Warriors fans are a big problem for opposing teams. The Warriors will need the support they get from their fans, as they look defeat LeBron James and the Cavaliers to win back-to-back NBA Championships. Golden State has a rabid fanbase that has earned them the number one spot on this list.
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