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Old 04-25-2020, 12:57 PM
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Cities with more than one sports team (in the same sport): What drives the fandom of each?


Cities like Los Angeles which has two NBA teams: Clippers and Lakers, or how New York City has the Jets/Giants in football, the Nets/Knicks in basketball, and the Mets/Yankees in baseball:

Since they're all situated squarely in the same geographic region, what tends to drive the fandom of each? Is it largely split along underdog/topdog lines (bandwagoner Los Angelers are likely to go for the Lakers while underdog-rooters gravitate towards the Clippers?) Is it that one team is perceived as blue-collar while the other is perceived as the rich man's team?
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Old 04-25-2020, 01:07 PM
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It is often whichever team is doing the best at the time. There may be an advantage to a team that's been there longer or won more often over the years. I've mainly seen this in New York, I didn't notice any socio-economic divisions, it was mainly situational. Each team has it's die-hard fans but they're all die-hard fans if either team gets to a championship.
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Old 04-25-2020, 01:11 PM
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In Chicago baseball, it's North side vs South side between the Cubs and White Sox.

In NY baseball the Mets inherited a lot of the fanbase of the Dodgers and Giants when they left town. The Mets fanbase is centered in Queens, Brooklyn, and Long Island, whereas the Yankees fans are in Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Westchester County, NJ, and CT. I believe the Giants/Jets fans are similarly distributed.

In both cases, geography is the main determinant.

LA football, there aren't enough fans to matter, yet.

No idea about LA basketball or SF/Oakland baseball and formerly football. But I suspect it's mostly geography as well.
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Old 04-25-2020, 02:22 PM
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In Los Angeles, I suspect that, historically, there were more Lakers fans than Clippers fans, in part because the Lakers were very good, while the Clippers were terrible for a long time, and also in part because the Clippers only moved to the city in '84.
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Old 04-25-2020, 02:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Telemark View Post
In Chicago baseball, it's North side vs South side between the Cubs and White Sox.
Traditionally very true. In addition, the Cubs' fan base seems to skew somewhat more white-collar, as well as to the 20-somethings who go to Wrigley to drink and party, while the White Sox fan base is somewhat more working-class (likely reflective of who lives on the South Side and the southern suburbs).
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Old 04-25-2020, 02:55 PM
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I have a buddy from the Bronx who is a life-long Mets fan. According to him, Yankees fans skew conservative/Republican/older.
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Old 04-25-2020, 04:15 PM
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I'm not a sports person, so this is a very broad, outside observation based on growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area:

With football, gangsters and other thugs liked the Raiders. Everyone else was into the 49ers. The fact that the Raiders left town for a good spell made no dent on their fan base in the Bay Area.

Almost everyone I knew who was into baseball liked the Giants. Seldom did I meet someone who was an A's fan. I have no idea what drove that.
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Old 04-25-2020, 06:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Telemark View Post
In NY baseball the Mets inherited a lot of the fanbase of the Dodgers and Giants when they left town. The Mets fanbase is centered in Queens, Brooklyn, and Long Island, whereas the Yankees fans are in Manhattan, the Bronx, Staten Island, Westchester County, NJ, and CT. I believe the Giants/Jets fans are similarly distributed.
My family, from the Bronx, were traditionally NY Giants fans. When the Mets came along, my father and three of my brothers became Mets fans because they were National League.

I wasn't a baseball fan growing up, so I didn't learn to love the National League or hate the Yankees. I became a Yankee fan when I was living in Colorado during their streak of pennants and championships in the 1970s as a way to connect back to my roots. I guess I was a bandwagon jumper at the time, but I've stayed with them 45 years even during stretches when the bandwagon lost it's wheels.

My brothers profess to hate the Yankees, but I'll root for the Mets as long as they aren't playing the Yankees.

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I have a buddy from the Bronx who is a life-long Mets fan. According to him, Yankees fans skew conservative/Republican/older.
Well, a Mets fan would say that, wouldn't he? The Yankees have plenty of poor/working class fans. The Yankees might have a greater number of older fans who became fans before the Mets even existed. (The last game I went to, the guy behind me told me the first game he went to he saw Gehrig play.)

The Yankees have a far larger fan base in general. The Mets are only one of two teams (the other being the As) that don't have a single ZIP code in which they are the favorite team (based on Facebook likes).

Last edited by Colibri; 04-25-2020 at 06:09 PM.
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Old 04-25-2020, 06:30 PM
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I have a buddy from the Bronx who is a life-long Mets fan. According to him, Yankees fans skew conservative/Republican/older.
Actually, Facebook did such a survey. Yankees fans did average more conservative, but not by very much. Puzzlingly though, Mets fans are older on average by a couple of years (28 for Yankees, 30 for Mets).
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Old 04-25-2020, 08:37 PM
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WhGianten I was growing up in Philly we still had the A's. They had won three pennants in a row in '29, '30, '31 and they were far the dominant team. In 1948, I think they even had a chance. The Phillies always competed with the Pirates for the cellar. Then came the 1950 season when they won the pennant (and were swept by the Yankees) and suddenly everyone was a Phillies fan. Five years or so later, the A's moved to KC. Who could have imagined that in 1949? I had an uncle though who was a diehard Phillies fan all his life and a framed copy of the 1950 pennant on the wall of his dining room.

My wife grew up in Brooklyn and everyone she knew was a Dodger's fan. I imagine that in those days, Manhattanites were Giants fans. In Philly, the two teams played in the same ballpark so there was no geographic separation. Same thing in St. Louis where the Browns and Cardinals played in the same stadium.
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Old 04-25-2020, 09:03 PM
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In NY baseball the Mets inherited a lot of the fanbase of the Dodgers and Giants when they left town.
Thatís not necessarily a coincidence. The Mets colors are a combination of Dodger blue and Giant orange.
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Old 04-25-2020, 09:03 PM
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Originally Posted by Velocity View Post
Cities like Los Angeles which has two NBA teams: Clippers and Lakers, or how New York City has the Jets/Giants in football, the Nets/Knicks in basketball, and the Mets/Yankees in baseball:

Since they're all situated squarely in the same geographic region, what tends to drive the fandom of each? Is it largely split along underdog/topdog lines (bandwagoner Los Angelers are likely to go for the Lakers while underdog-rooters gravitate towards the Clippers?) Is it that one team is perceived as blue-collar while the other is perceived as the rich man's team?
There are legitimate Yankees and Mets fans.
I grew up in queens so I was a Mets fan but I didn't dislike the Yankees. They're still hometown heroes.

Not all Yankees fans are bandwagon fans but almost all bandwagon fans are yankees fans.
This is partly due to the bandwagon effect but a lot of people who come to NYC for work end up being Yankees fans. Very few of them end up becoming Mets fans. If you walk around law firms, consulting firms and investment banks, you see a lot of Yankees fans. Far fewer Mets fans.
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Old 04-25-2020, 11:10 PM
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I live about halfway between NYC and Albany and just about everybody here is a Yankee fan. Blue-collar, white-collar, older, younger, male, female, it doesn't matter. If anything I'd say Yankee fandom is even more pronounced among blue-collar workers, but that's scarcely scientific.

There are some Mets fans, but not very many (and most of them are either about 60 or approaching 45--you figure it out ).

Yes, geography may play a role as we are closer to the Bronx and tend to be a destination for families who already live north of the city--but as Colibri points out, it's not all that geographical given that Long Island also has a preponderance of Yankee fans.

Last edited by Ulf the Unwashed; 04-25-2020 at 11:11 PM.
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Old 04-26-2020, 08:10 AM
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There are interesting lines to be drawn outside of single cities, too. When I was growing up in Dayton, Ohio, it seemed like there were just as many Cleveland Browns fans as there were Cincinnati Bengals fans.

And in Appalachian Ohio, the Browns were king. Of course, the Bengals were formed in the late '60s, so there the Browns had a couple of decades to solidify loyalties. Now that both clubs are generally miserable, I wonder if the Browns are still that popular throughout the southern part of the state.
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Old 04-26-2020, 08:15 AM
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I would like to hear from some of our English members, particularly about Manchester (2 teams) and London (at least 5 teams I know of). I understand that partisanship is almost passed down to younger generations and that it is almost unknown for someone to change allegiance simply because your favoured team is not doing well.
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Old 04-26-2020, 08:23 AM
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I would like to hear from some of our English members, particularly about Manchester (2 teams) and London (at least 5 teams I know of). I understand that partisanship is almost passed down to younger generations and that it is almost unknown for someone to change allegiance simply because your favoured team is not doing well.
And also from AFL (Australian Football League) fans - I think 9 of the 18 teams are from the Melbourne area - sharing two home parks. Which Melbourne team do you support, and why?
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Old 04-26-2020, 11:00 AM
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I don't know how the Clippers are doing now, fandom-wise, but when I was last in LA (a good thirteen years ago) the impression I got (I attended a Sturday night Clippers game because they were the only pro sports team playing in town during my visit) were that there were few, if any, Clippers fans at all. Donald Sterling (the Clippers' owner at the time) figured out that there was more media money in being even a little-cared-about second Los Angeles team than there was in being the only team in San Diego, and that's why he moved the team. But 99% (if not more) of Los Angeles-area basketball fans root for the Lakers. The Clippers really don't have a natural, distinct fan base like the Yankees/Mets or Cubs/White Sox divide.
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Old 04-26-2020, 11:21 AM
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My understanding is that the Clippers became much more popular in the last few years that they have done well in the playoffs, and the Lakers haven't been that good.
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