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  #11  
Old 02-09-2011, 08:30 PM
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Originally Posted by hatehabsforever View Post
But it isn't just baseball. How about the NFL? We have both the Jets and the Giants. Granted their stadium is in New Jersey, but they are still called the New York Jets and the New York Giants. The Jets boast a Superbowl victory, in 1968 with the famous Namath guarantee. And the Giants have three, in 1986, 1990, and 2007. The Giants managed to disrupt the Patriots flirtation with perfection four years ago, inspiring both euphoria with their fans and venom from us Patriots fans. The Jets produced similar emotions this season. Not only is the Big Apple the top sports city because of their MLB sons, but their NFL guys as well.
Im glad you chose to break it down by the sport. You said it, but let me re-iterate it. You can't consider either NFL team to truly be "New York" teams when they play AND practice in facilities outside of their state. In 2009, the Jets relocated from their practice facility in Long Island to one in Floram Park, New Jersey. The Giants share the same facility. Both teams share the same facility, in East Rutherford, New Jersey, Meadowland Stadium. Both are New York teams in name only, because none of their actual involvement in NFL activities occurs there. Scratch the NFL off the list in terms of arguing in favor of New York as a "great sports town."

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Originally Posted by hatehabsforever View Post
First of all, to GD, the notion that Pittsburgh is the best sports city is, with all due respect, somewhat laughable when compared to a city such as New York. You clearly are looking at the question with Pennsylvania rose colored glasses. In looking at the four major leagues in North America (MLB, NHL, NBA, and NFL), it should be pointed out that Pittsburgh does not even have a NBA team.
Agreed. And as I said, New York doesn't truly possess an NFL franchise. New Jersey now possesses both the practicing and playing rights for both teams. So without a stake in all four major sports, how can they be considered the best? They can't.

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Originally Posted by General Disarray View Post
At the this moment, Pittsburgh is the clear choice. Definitely the best and most enjoyable city when it comes to sports..
I would love to be a homer along with you and say Pittsburgh, but I can't. We may be the most enjoyable city in terms of sports, but we're hardly the best. We don't possess an NBA franchise, which puts us at a disadantage. We have aa baseball team whose owner pockets the revenus sharing money rather then using it to even attempt to become competitive. That's two of the big four sports right there that severely cripples Pittsburgh. while the Steelers fans may travel better than any sports franchise today, the Penguins and Pirates do not. The Penguins sell out the gorgeous Consol Energy Center each and every one of the 41 home games, there's no denying that.

Looking at attendance in baseball for the other argued cities, the Pirates average attendance in 2010 was 27th in MLB at 19,918, or 51.8% of the park. The Red Sox almost doubled that with 37,610, which is 100% capacity. The Yankees average attendance was 46,491, but is misleading as it's only 88.9% capacity. The Mets averaged only 32,401, which is 77.1% capacity. As for the Tigers? 30,385 was the average attendance, which is only 75.7% capacity. The total figures can be found here.

Click for Spoiler:
Source: ESPN.com

2010Attendance Home Road Overall
RK TEAM GMS TOTAL AVG PCT GMS AVG PCT GMS AVG PCT
1 NY Yankees 81 3,765,807 46,491 88.9 81 34,939 78.2 162 40,715 83.9
2 Philadelphia 81 3,647,249 45,027 103.5 81 32,982 75.6 162 39,005 89.6
3 LA Dodgers 81 3,562,320 43,979 78.5 80 33,806 76.9 161 38,924 77.8
4 St. Louis 81 3,301,218 40,755 87.0 81 30,687 71.0 162 35,721 79.3
5 LA Angels 81 3,250,816 40,133 89.1 81 30,257 67.6 162 35,195 78.4
6 Minnesota 81 3,223,640 39,798 100.7 81 27,350 62.6 162 33,574 80.7
7 Chicago Cubs 81 3,062,973 37,814 92.0 81 32,272 73.6 162 35,043 82.5
8 Boston 81 3,046,443 37,610 100.9 81 32,285 70.1 162 34,948 83.9
9 San Francisco 81 3,037,443 37,499 90.3 81 32,035 69.8 162 34,767 79.5
10 Colorado 80 2,875,245 35,940 71.2 81 31,502 71.1 161 33,707 71.2
11 Milwaukee 81 2,776,531 34,278 80.8 80 30,647 70.3 161 32,474 75.5
12 NY Mets 79 2,559,738 32,401 77.1 81 29,318 68.2 160 30,841 72.6
13 Atlanta 81 2,510,119 30,989 61.9 81 31,203 73.2 162 31,096 67.1
14 Texas 81 2,505,171 30,928 63.0 81 26,566 61.0 162 28,747 62.0
15 Detroit 81 2,461,237 30,385 75.7 79 29,700 67.1 160 30,047 71.2
16 Houston 81 2,331,490 28,783 70.3 81 31,866 72.6 162 30,325 71.5
17 Chicago White Sox 81 2,194,378 27,091 66.7 80 26,311 61.0 161 26,703 63.8
18 San Diego 81 2,131,774 26,318 61.9 81 31,104 68.4 162 28,711 65.3
19 Seattle 81 2,085,488 25,746 53.9 81 27,809 62.1 162 26,778 57.9
20 Cincinnati 81 2,060,550 25,438 60.5 81 29,781 68.5 162 27,610 64.6
21 Arizona 81 2,056,941 25,394 51.8 81 31,838 71.5 162 28,616 61.2
22 Tampa Bay 81 1,843,445 22,758 52.0 81 27,187 60.7 162 24,972 56.4
23 Washington 81 1,828,066 22,568 53.9 81 29,665 67.7 162 26,117 60.9
24 Baltimore 80 1,733,018 21,662 45.0 81 27,687 62.6 161 24,693 53.4
25 Kansas City 80 1,615,324 20,191 52.9 81 27,338 62.5 161 23,787 58.1
26 Toronto 81 1,625,555 20,068 39.9 81 27,773 62.4 162 23,920 50.5
27 Pittsburgh 81 1,613,399 19,918 51.9 81 30,600 69.9 162 25,259 61.5
28 Florida 81 1,535,226 18,953 54.2 80 30,684 69.3 161 24,782 62.6
29 Oakland 81 1,418,391 17,511 40.1 81 29,719 66.5 162 23,615 53.4
30 Cleveland 80 1,394,812 17,435 40.2 81 29,205 68.5 161 23,357 54.3

Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Sexy View Post
All 4 teams with the exception of maybe the Lions have had very good success and a lot of it recently. The Lions have struggled as of late but the future is bright with young stars like Calvin Johnson, Ndamukong Suh, Matthew Stafford, and Jhavid Best.
But performance is one of the biggest factors you have to look at when gauging a sports city as being truly great. The Lions have alot of great young pieces, but it's speculatory at best to say that the future is bright. As for the past, the Lions have never played in a Super Bowl since the merger and the closest they've ever come to it has been ONE NFC Championship game, and that was 20 years ago in 1991. That was the only year they've ever won a playoff game since the merger took effect in 1970. It's hard to argue in favor of Detroit when your football team has been so inept.

Quote:
If a Detroit team is winning you can expect a sell out almost every night. If they are competitive then great attendance is a guarantee. Even if the team is struggling attendance is still there in a solid capacity and all it takes is a few wins for the fans to really get into it and take that attendance to a whole new level.
Lets take a closer look at this. As you noted, the Tigers have been winning, and yet as I showed, they're only 15th in the majors in terms of attendance with average 75% capacity. Despite winning four World Series, one more than Boston, the Sox average 100% capacity. Obviously, the fanbase in Boston is more faithful.

As for the Lions, they were 29th of 32 teams in the NFL while averaging 87.3% capacity, 56,285 fans per game. If we were to speculatively look at the Giants and Jets, they come in at 95.8%(79,019) and 95.3%(78,593) average attendance, respectively. Even the great Steeler fans only averaged 97.1%(63,083) attendance on average. As for the Patriots? They're one of the few fanbases in the NFL with 100% average attendance for their home games.(68,756) Once again, the Boston fanbase shows more loyalty than the other three. The figures can be viewed here.

Click for Spoiler:
Source: ESPN.com
2010 Attendance Home Road Overall
RK TEAM GMS TOTAL AVG PCT GMS TOTAL AVG PCT GMS TOTAL AVG PCT
1 Dallas 8 696,377 87,047 108.8 8 581,596 72,699 100.9 16 1,277,973 79,873 105.1
2 Washington 8 665,380 83,172 90.7 8 528,376 66,047 94.7 16 1,193,756 74,609 92.4
3 NY Giants 8 632,156 79,019 95.8 8 558,939 69,867 96.7 16 1,191,095 74,443 96.2
4 NY Jets 8 628,768 78,596 95.3 8 534,607 66,825 95.9 16 1,163,375 72,710 95.6
5 Denver 8 599,264 74,908 98.4 7 446,243 63,749 92.6 15 1,045,507 69,700 95.8
6 Carolina 8 580,965 72,620 98.4 8 503,943 62,992 89.5 16 1,084,908 67,806 94.1
7 Baltimore 8 569,817 71,227 100.3 8 553,619 69,202 96.9 16 1,123,436 70,214 98.6
8 Houston 8 568,643 71,080 100.0 8 539,982 67,497 93.1 16 1,108,625 69,289 96.5
9 Green Bay 8 566,362 70,795 97.1 8 556,306 69,538 97.3 16 1,122,668 70,166 97.2
10 New Orleans 8 560,304 70,038 96.0 8 552,827 69,103 98.6 16 1,113,131 69,570 97.3
11 San Francisco 7 488,124 69,732 99.3 8 528,370 66,046 94.1 15 1,016,494 67,766 96.5
12 Philadelphia 8 553,152 69,144 102.3 8 572,774 71,596 97.6 16 1,125,926 70,370 99.9
13 Tennessee 8 553,144 69,143 100.0 8 562,121 70,265 95.8 16 1,115,265 69,704 97.8
14 New England 8 550,048 68,756 100.0 8 538,705 67,338 95.1 16 1,088,753 68,047 97.5
15 Atlanta 8 542,800 67,850 95.2 8 513,390 64,173 93.3 16 1,056,190 66,011 94.3
16 Miami 8 541,959 67,744 90.1 8 535,090 66,886 95.4 16 1,077,049 67,315 92.7
17 Kansas City 8 541,380 67,672 88.2 8 528,400 66,050 96.1 16 1,069,780 66,861 91.9
18 Seattle 8 535,942 66,992 100.0 8 473,541 59,192 88.0 16 1,009,483 63,092 94.0
19 Indianapolis 8 535,802 66,975 106.3 8 557,979 69,747 97.1 16 1,093,781 68,361 101.4
20 Cleveland 8 528,933 66,116 90.3 8 488,974 61,121 88.0 16 1,017,907 63,619 89.2
21 San Diego 8 524,241 65,530 91.9 8 504,474 63,059 92.1 16 1,028,715 64,294 92.0
22 Buffalo 7 442,366 63,195 86.5 8 541,538 67,692 93.9 15 983,904 65,593 90.4
23 Pittsburgh 8 504,669 63,083 97.1 8 545,046 68,130 96.3 16 1,049,715 65,607 96.7
24 Jacksonville 8 504,262 63,032 93.8 8 557,341 69,667 95.0 16 1,061,603 66,350 94.4
25 Arizona 8 502,197 62,774 99.0 8 520,533 65,066 93.0 16 1,022,730 63,920 95.9
26 Chicago 8 497,561 62,195 101.1 7 474,556 67,793 95.1 15 972,117 64,807 98.1
27 Cincinnati 8 482,917 60,364 92.1 8 550,935 68,866 96.9 16 1,033,852 64,615 94.6
28 Minnesota 8 470,009 58,751 94.1 8 559,788 69,973 96.1 16 1,029,797 64,362 95.2
29 Detroit 8 450,286 56,285 87.3 8 526,932 65,866 91.6 16 977,218 61,076 89.6
30 St. Louis 8 423,383 52,922 81.0 8 487,812 60,976 89.9 16 911,195 56,949 85.5
31 Tampa Bay 8 394,513 49,314 75.1 8 542,501 67,812 93.6 16 937,014 58,563 84.8
32 Oakland 8 371,448 46,431 73.7 8 539,934 67,491 96.6 16 911,382 56,961 85.7

Facts are facts. The Giants and the Jets don't play in New York at all, which disqualifies them from truly being "New York" sports franchises. They're New Jersey franchises. Pittsburgh is basically a two sport town both in attendance and competition level, unless we're counting number of bobblehead dolls night tickets sold for the Pirates. The Lions are historically one of the worst franchises in NFL history, and the Tigers only draw middle of the pack attendance figures despite putting up winning numbers. The Boston franchises both win and turn out fans, amongst all four sports. There's no argument against them.
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Old 02-09-2011, 08:54 PM
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Originally Posted by LSN80 View Post
But performance is one of the biggest factors you have to look at when gauging a sports city as being truly great. The Lions have alot of great young pieces, but it's speculatory at best to say that the future is bright. As for the past, the Lions have never played in a Super Bowl since the merger and the closest they've ever come to it has been ONE NFC Championship game, and that was 20 years ago in 1991. That was the only year they've ever won a playoff game since the merger took effect in 1970. It's hard to argue in favor of Detroit when your football team has been so inept.
No one said winning wasn't important but to say it is the end all be all of what makes a great sports city is asinine.
Quote:
Lets take a closer look at this. As you noted, the Tigers have been winning, and yet as I showed, they're only 15th in the majors in terms of attendance with average 75% capacity. Despite winning four World Series, one more than Boston, the Sox average 100% capacity. Obviously, the fanbase in Boston is more faithful.
Did you also show that the state of Michigan is going through a huge recession. The entire country is struggling economically but Michigan has been hit particularly hard. Under the circumstances the attendance of Detroit teams has been very good.

Quote:
As for the Lions, they were 29th of 32 teams in the NFL while averaging 87.3% capacity, 56,285 fans per game. If we were to speculatively look at the Giants and Jets, they come in at 95.8%(79,019) and 95.3%(78,593) average attendance, respectively. Even the great Steeler fans only averaged 97.1%(63,083) attendance on average. As for the Patriots? They're one of the few fanbases in the NFL with 100% average attendance for their home games.(68,756) Once again, the Boston fanbase shows more loyalty than the other three. The figures can be viewed here.
Once again you fail completely to mention the financial struggles that the state of Michigan is going through and the Lions are the one team in Detorit that has had prolonged struggles winning. When you are struggling economically going to see a losing team with their star quarterback injured isn't really on the top of the to do list. Once again, under the circumstances the Lions attendance was good. Families livelihood > seeing any sport team play.

Quote:
Facts are facts. The Giants and the Jets don't play in New York at all, which disqualifies them from truly being "New York" sports franchises. They're New Jersey franchises.
You've kind of painted yourself in a corner with this one. Last time I checked the Patriots represented the region of New England. They aren't the Boston Patriots. The state of Massachusetts is part of the New England region but this is greatest sports city, not greatest sports region. If the Giants and Jets don't count as New York then the Patriots sure as fuck don't count as Boston.

Quote:
The Lions are historically one of the worst franchises in NFL history, and the Tigers only draw middle of the pack attendance figures despite putting up winning numbers.
The attendance figures in these horrible economic times for the State are more then adequate. The loyalty is there only a blind man can't see that.
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There's no argument against them.
There are multiple arguments against them and for the real greatest sports city: Detroit.
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Old 02-09-2011, 09:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Sexy View Post
No one said winning wasn't important but to say it is the end all be all of what makes a great sports city is asinine.
Good thing I never made that statement then, right? I noted that winning, fanbase, consistency, and the best rivalries in sports were what made for a great sports city. The biggest rivals for your Pistons are the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Lakers, at least in recent times. Cleveland's on its way to its 26th straight loss, and the Lakers rivalry with the Celtics will never be trumped by theirs with the Pistons, even if it made for great basketball in the 90's. The Red Wings belong in the conversation of grestest rivalries with the Blackhawks in terms of hockey, no doubt. But any rivalry the Tigers have doesn't trump the Red Sox and the Yankees, and the Lions have had no major rivalries recently, unless we're talking about for the first pick in the NFL draft.

Quote:
Did you also show that the state of Michigan is going through a huge recession. The entire country is struggling economically but Michigan has been hit particularly hard. Under the circumstances the attendance of Detroit teams has been very good.


Once again you fail completely to mention the financial struggles that the state of Michigan is going through and the Lions are the one team in Detorit that has had prolonged struggles winning. When you are struggling economically going to see a losing team with their star quarterback injured isn't really on the top of the to do list. Once again, under the circumstances the Lions attendance was good. Families livelihood > seeing any sport team play.
I won't argue that it's not very good. I also understand that Massachusettes average income home is 6th amongst states, while Michigan's is 34th. One of the things i have easy access to is the current economic figures for all 50 states. Youre welcome for that one, because Im not going to deny you have a valid point. Some of the luxuries that are afforded to those in Boston and its surrounding areas may not be available for those in Michigan. I live in a state that's not far off from yours(Pennsylvania), but managed to sell out the miserable barn that was the Mellon Arena night in and out even during the Penguins leanest times. People find ways to get to games when they're passionate about their teams. There's absolutely no way for me, a novice, to quantify a direct correlation between attendance in your state for its sports and the economy. I leave that part up to economists to determine, not myself.

One can argue recession all they want, but the facts are clear that over a 100,000 more people a game go to see the Patriots play then they do the Lions. Over 7,000 people a game go and see the Red Sox play even though Comerica > Fenway Park in terms of available seats.

Quote:
You've kind of painted yourself in a corner with this one. Last time I checked the Patriots represented the region of New England. They aren't the Boston Patriots. The state of Massachusetts is part of the New England region but this is greatest sports city, not greatest sports region. If the Giants and Jets don't count as New York then the Patriots sure as fuck don't count as Boston.
And the last time I checked, the Patriots play in Foxborough, which is a suburb of Boston. A suberb refers to a "residential area of a city." Ill take my chances with a "residential area of a city" over an entirely seperate state. Nice try though.

Quote:
The attendance figures in these horrible economic times for the State are more then adequate. The loyalty is there only a blind man can't see that.
More then adequate? Sure. Ive never argued against that. Great? Hardly. Even the most affluent of states are still going through hard economic times, our entire country is. Im not arguing that Detroit isn't a great sports city either. It's just not in the same class as Boston. Simple as that.
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Old 02-09-2011, 11:21 PM
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Originally Posted by LSN80 View Post
Good thing I never made that statement then, right? I noted that winning, fanbase, consistency, and the best rivalries in sports were what made for a great sports city. The biggest rivals for your Pistons are the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Lakers, at least in recent times. Cleveland's on its way to its 26th straight loss, and the Lakers rivalry with the Celtics will never be trumped by theirs with the Pistons, even if it made for great basketball in the 90's. The Red Wings belong in the conversation of grestest rivalries with the Blackhawks in terms of hockey, no doubt. But any rivalry the Tigers have doesn't trump the Red Sox and the Yankees, and the Lions have had no major rivalries recently, unless we're talking about for the first pick in the NFL draft.
I never said you made that statement it was hatehabs who really seemed to be following that logic I was just reiterating the point. When it comes to rivalries that plays only a small part in talking about the best sports city. You also didn't do much research because almost all of your rivalries are wrong. The Pistons main rivals over the years have been the Pacers and the Bulls, with the Celtics in there as well during the 80's. The Piston/Bull games in the late 80's early 90's were tremendous. The Pacer/Piston rivalry throughout most of the last decade until recently was also one of the most competitive in the NBA. The Celtic/Laker rivalry had been nonexistent in the 90's and most of the 2000's until the C's made the trades to get the big 3 together. The Tigers have very good in division rivalries with the White Sox and Twins. It isn't Yankee/Red Sox but still good rivalries. The Lions also have their in division rivals. In fact the Lions/Bears/Packers have played more games against each other then any other trio in the NFL.

Quote:
One can argue recession all they want, but the facts are clear that over a 100,000 more people a game go to see the Patriots play then they do the Lions. Over 7,000 people a game go and see the Red Sox play even though Comerica > Fenway Park in terms of available seats.
I'm sure that 100,000 should be 10,000. Anyways you already stated above that you agree the recession and economics plays a big role so your facts are obviously not clear. Numbers are almost irrelevant in this case because it isn't a level playing field and like you said none of us are economists so we can't come to a conclusion on how big or small the disparity would be to make it a level playing field.

Quote:
And the last time I checked, the Patriots play in Foxborough, which is a suburb of Boston. A suberb refers to a "residential area of a city." Ill take my chances with a "residential area of a city" over an entirely seperate state. Nice try though.
According to google maps, Foxborough is 40 minutes from Boston. The Meadowlands Stadium is 25 minutes from New York City. The Giants and Jets play closer to New York City then Pats do to Boston and at least the Giants and Jets have "New York" in their name so it obviously represents that city. Nice try though. I personally don't believe the Giants, Jets, and Patriots should be excluded from their respective cities but if the Giants and Jets are excluded then the Pats should be as well.

Quote:
More then adequate? Sure. Ive never argued against that. Great? Hardly. Even the most affluent of states are still going through hard economic times, our entire country is. Im not arguing that Detroit isn't a great sports city either. It's just not in the same class as Boston. Simple as that.
Not many states if any are going through harder times then Michigan. And the attendance numbers considering that are great. You're right about one thing though, Detroit isn't in the same class as Boston. And it's because they are ahead of them.
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Old 02-10-2011, 02:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Sexy View Post
I never said you made that statement it was hatehabs who really seemed to be following that logic I was just reiterating the point. When it comes to rivalries that plays only a small part in talking about the best sports city.
I agree with your logic that winning isn't the only thing that makes a sports city great. It's a factor that can't be dismissed, but it isn't the end all, be all. This is where rivalries comes in. I believe established rivalries plays a tremendous role in determining whether or not said city is a great sports town. I enjoy going to Pirate games, but it's hard for me to "get up" for games even against their division foes, because the Pirates are hardly equals to any of them. A rivalry is based on two teams that are close to equal in ability attempting to surpass one another. No city has established this more than Boston. I get more excited for a Steelers/Patriots game then I do a Steelers/Browns game, because there's great competitiveness in the former and not so much in the latter.

Quote:
The Celtic/Laker rivalry had been nonexistent in the 90's and most of the 2000's until the C's made the trades to get the big 3 together.
Discount it all you like, but the rivalry between the Celtics and the Lakers is the longest one and certainly between the two most storied franchises in NBA history. It may have died down a bit when Magic and Bird retired in the early 90's, but no two teams in the NBA have played more postseason games against each other(74), which is incredibly impressive seeing how they're in different conferences. No two teams have met in more NBA Finals. The rivalry over which team is the most prestigious is undeniable as well, with the Celtics owning 17 NBA championships to the Lakers 16. Prestige is also a factor in what makes a great sports town, and there's no more prestigious team in NBA history then that of the Boston Celtics.

Quote:
The Tigers have very good in division rivalries with the White Sox and Twins. It isn't Yankee/Red Sox but still good rivalries.
And that's what matters, because Yankees/Red Sox have set the standard for rivalries not only in baseball, but amongst all sports in the United States. Tigers/White Sox and Tigers/Twins are good rivalries, but you won't hear words like epic or grand mentioned in those rivalries like you do with Boston/New York. Again, another sport in which Boston is involved in the greatest rivalry in the history of its sport.


Quote:
In fact the Lions/Bears/Packers have played more games against each other then any other trio in the NFL.
The problem is, you're equating playing one another frequently to being a good rivalry. Its competitiveness that makes a rivalry great. Over the past decade, the Lions are 3-17 against the Packers. All time, Detroit is 65-91 against Green Bay. They havent fared much better against the Bears, going 5-15 in the last decade, and the Lions are 64-93 against the Bears all time. Have they played each other alot? Absolutely. Good rivals in the truest sense of the word? Hardly.

Quote:
I'm sure that 100,000 should be 10,000.
Yeah, that was a typo on my end. Ignore that.

Quote:
Anyways you already stated above that you agree the recession and economics plays a big role so your facts are obviously not clear.Numbers are almost irrelevant in this case because it isn't a level playing field and like you said none of us are economists so we can't come to a conclusion on how big or small the disparity would be to make it a level playing field.
My facts are clear, maybe I just need to reiterate them. The entire country is in a recession, not just the state of Michigan. I also stated that passionate fans find a way to get out and see their favorite teams, sometimes at the expense of their families, unfortunately. Like I said, Pennsylvania(and specifically Western Pa, where I live) falls into the same economic bracket as Michigan does. Yet we sold out the putrid Mellon Arena all 41 games last year, and have been doing so for many years, even before the Penguins started competing for Cups. And you're right, it is impossible to know the disparity between cities, and we're not economists, as both of us have noted. So the only thing we CAN look at is the numbers here, and Boston sells out its football, basketball, hockey and baseball games all year round. Their attendance is no less then 98% capacity, on average, for all four sports teams over the entire 2010 respective seasons. That does tell the story of a passionate fan base, no matter how you want to spin it. Here's the NBA numbers, which includes the Celtics(98%), and Bruins(99%).

Click for Spoiler:
Source: ESPN.com
2009-10 Attendance Home Road Overall
RK TEAM GMS TOTAL AVG PCT GMS AVG PCT GMS AVG PCT
1 Blackhawks 40 854,267 21,356 108.3 40 17,163 94.4 80 19,260 101.7
2 Canadiens 41 872,193 21,273 100.0 41 17,302 94.7 82 19,287 97.6
3 Red Wings 40 781,847 19,546 97.4 40 17,919 98.4 80 18,732 97.9
4 Flyers 41 800,966 19,535 100.2 40 16,830 92.3 81 18,200 96.4
5 Flames 41 790,849 19,289 100.0 41 16,851 92.2 82 18,070 96.2
6 Maple Leafs 41 789,681 19,260 102.5 41 17,113 92.5 82 18,186 97.5
7 Blues 40 755,322 18,883 98.6 40 16,690 91.4 80 17,786 95.1
8 Canucks 41 771,210 18,810 102.1 41 17,132 93.1 82 17,971 97.6
9 Sabres 41 759,695 18,529 99.1 41 17,064 92.3 82 17,796 95.7
10 Wild 41 755,055 18,415 101.9 41 17,037 92.5 82 17,726 97.2
11 Capitals 41 749,357 18,277 100.0 41 17,070 91.9 82 17,673 95.9
12 Senators 41 749,061 18,269 98.8 41 16,726 90.3 82 17,498 94.5
13 NY Rangers 41 741,128 18,076 99.3 41 17,733 96.2 82 17,904 97.8
14 Sharks 41 719,904 17,558 100.4 41 16,814 91.7 82 17,186 95.9
15 Bruins 40 695,543 17,388 99.0 41 17,646 94.7 81 17,519 96.7
16 Kings 41 709,853 17,313 93.6 41 16,440 90.3 82 16,877 92.0
17 Stars 41 705,817 17,215 92.9 41 16,797 91.9 82 17,006 92.4
18 Penguins 41 700,211 17,078 100.7 41 18,205 98.5 82 17,641 99.6
19 Oilers 41 690,399 16,839 100.0 41 16,802 91.0 82 16,820 95.3
20 Devils 41 636,975 15,535 88.1 41 17,454 94.9 82 16,495 91.6
21 Lightning 41 635,388 15,497 78.4 41 16,700 90.5 82 16,099 84.3
22 Blue Jackets 41 632,086 15,416 85.0 41 17,057 92.8 82 16,237 88.9
23 Hurricanes 41 624,873 15,240 81.4 41 16,391 88.7 82 15,816 85.0
24 Ducks 41 621,903 15,168 88.3 41 16,873 92.1 82 16,020 90.3
25 Panthers 40 605,863 15,146 78.7 40 16,495 89.2 80 15,820 83.9
26 Predators 41 614,143 14,979 87.5 41 16,903 92.2 82 15,941 89.9
27 Avalanche 41 571,849 13,947 77.5 41 17,519 95.2 82 15,733 86.4
28 Thrashers 41 557,897 13,607 73.4 41 17,208 92.5 82 15,407 82.9
29 NY Islanders 41 522,168 12,735 78.1 41 17,070 92.2 82 14,903 85.6
30 Coyotes 41 491,558 11,989 68.5 41 16,986 92.6 82 14,487 80.8


Click for Spoiler:
Source: ESPN.com
2010 Attendance Home Road Overall
RK TEAM GMS TOTAL AVG PCT GMS AVG PCT GMS AVG PCT
1 Bulls 41 849,760 20,725 99.1 41 17,735 92.2 82 19,230 95.8
2 Cavaliers 41 843,042 20,562 100.0 41 19,200 100.2 82 19,881 100.1
3 Trail Blazers 41 840,411 20,497 102.6 41 16,546 87.2 82 18,521 95.1
4 Mavericks 41 819,770 19,994 104.1 41 17,129 90.2 82 18,561 97.2
5 NY Knicks 41 799,550 19,501 98.7 41 17,315 90.0 82 18,408 94.4
6 Jazz 41 794,512 19,378 97.3 41 17,095 89.9 82 18,237 93.7
7 Lakers 41 778,877 18,997 99.7 41 19,265 101.2 82 19,131 100.4
8 Pistons 41 768,826 18,751 84.9 41 17,104 89.4 82 17,928 87.0
9 Celtics 41 744,961 18,169 97.6 41 18,154 93.9 82 18,161 95.7
10 Spurs 41 741,676 18,089 97.4 41 17,707 93.2 82 17,898 95.3
11 Warriors 41 739,120 18,027 92.0 41 16,443 86.7 82 17,235 89.4
12 Thunder 41 738,149 18,003 98.9 41 16,876 88.3 82 17,440 93.5
13 Nuggets 41 737,812 17,995 93.9 41 17,446 91.9 82 17,720 92.9
14 Raptors 41 733,784 17,897 90.4 41 16,466 85.9 82 17,181 88.2
15 Heat 41 726,935 17,730 90.5 41 18,040 93.8 82 17,885 92.1
16 Suns 41 723,582 17,648 95.8 41 17,376 91.4 82 17,512 93.5
17 Magic 41 715,901 17,461 100.0 41 17,838 92.2 82 17,649 95.9
18 Hawks 41 678,375 16,545 88.3 41 17,097 88.5 82 16,821 88.4
19 Rockets 41 677,658 16,528 91.6 41 16,616 87.3 82 16,572 89.4
20 Clippers 41 670,063 16,343 85.7 41 16,225 85.3 82 16,284 85.5
21 Wizards 41 664,398 16,204 80.3 41 16,487 86.1 82 16,346 83.1
22 Bobcats 41 648,790 15,824 82.9 41 16,256 84.7 82 16,040 83.8
23 Hornets 41 620,366 15,130 88.5 41 17,168 89.8 82 16,149 89.2
24 Bucks 41 619,453 15,108 80.7 41 16,823 87.2 82 15,965 84.0
25 Timberwolves 41 619,170 15,101 78.0 41 16,112 84.8 82 15,607 81.4
26 76ers 41 583,219 14,224 70.0 41 16,889 88.0 82 15,556 78.7
27 Pacers 41 582,295 14,202 78.2 41 16,955 87.9 82 15,578 83.2
28 Grizzlies 41 552,914 13,485 74.4 41 16,691 87.6 82 15,088 81.2
29 Kings 41 543,416 13,254 76.5 41 16,973 88.9 82 15,113 83.0
30 Nets 41 537,230 13,103 69.1 41 16,446 85.4 82 14,774 77.3


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According to google maps, Foxborough is 40 minutes from Boston. The Meadowlands Stadium is 25 minutes from New York City. The Giants and Jets play closer to New York City then Pats do to Boston and at least the Giants and Jets have "New York" in their name so it obviously represents that city. Nice try though. I personally don't believe the Giants, Jets, and Patriots should be excluded from their respective cities but if the Giants and Jets are excluded then the Pats should be as well.
Already discussed. Ill give you an example though. I lived, at one time, in a city that was 3 miles from Ohio. It was a suberb of a larger city, which I lived 20 miles from. Yet my location was considered to be a part of the city I lived in, not the location I was closer to. This is a zoning and proximity issue now, and we're splitting hairs. Ill concede the point, and agree to include the Giants and Jets in the discussion, even on a technicality of a name.


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You're right about one thing though, Detroit isn't in the same class as Boston. And it's because they are ahead of them.
Only if you exclude championship pedigree, lineage, intense rivalries, and fanbase, among the, if not, the biggest factors in determining a great sports town. Boston is clearly head and shoulders above Detroit in all 4, which can and has been proved by myself throughout this and my other posts.
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Old 02-10-2011, 05:22 PM
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Originally Posted by LSN80 View Post
I agree with your logic that winning isn't the only thing that makes a sports city great. It's a factor that can't be dismissed, but it isn't the end all, be all. This is where rivalries comes in. I believe established rivalries plays a tremendous role in determining whether or not said city is a great sports town. I enjoy going to Pirate games, but it's hard for me to "get up" for games even against their division foes, because the Pirates are hardly equals to any of them. A rivalry is based on two teams that are close to equal in ability attempting to surpass one another. No city has established this more than Boston. I get more excited for a Steelers/Patriots game then I do a Steelers/Browns game, because there's great competitiveness in the former and not so much in the latter.
Again, rivalries are nice but you seem to be putting way too much importance on them.

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Discount it all you like, but the rivalry between the Celtics and the Lakers is the longest one and certainly between the two most storied franchises in NBA history. It may have died down a bit when Magic and Bird retired in the early 90's, but no two teams in the NBA have played more postseason games against each other(74), which is incredibly impressive seeing how they're in different conferences. No two teams have met in more NBA Finals. The rivalry over which team is the most prestigious is undeniable as well, with the Celtics owning 17 NBA championships to the Lakers 16. Prestige is also a factor in what makes a great sports town, and there's no more prestigious team in NBA history then that of the Boston Celtics.
The Lakers and Celtics are only a real rivalry when it's convenient for the media. Once Magic and Bird retired there was nearly a 20 year period where the two teams would just meet a couple times a year and the games would mean jack shit. Back in the 60's it was a real rivalry. Back in the 80's it was real rivalry, and currently because both teams are good again and the media can milk the history it's all of the sudden a real rivalry again.

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And that's what matters, because Yankees/Red Sox have set the standard for rivalries not only in baseball, but amongst all sports in the United States. Tigers/White Sox and Tigers/Twins are good rivalries, but you won't hear words like epic or grand mentioned in those rivalries like you do with Boston/New York. Again, another sport in which Boston is involved in the greatest rivalry in the history of its sport.
No one is denying the Yankees/Red Sox being the bigger of the rivalries in baseball. But if you go to hockey then Red Wings/Black Hawks shits all over any rivalries the Bruins have. You can't win off of one sports rivalry.
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The problem is, you're equating playing one another frequently to being a good rivalry. Its competitiveness that makes a rivalry great. Over the past decade, the Lions are 3-17 against the Packers. All time, Detroit is 65-91 against Green Bay. They havent fared much better against the Bears, going 5-15 in the last decade, and the Lions are 64-93 against the Bears all time. Have they played each other alot? Absolutely. Good rivals in the truest sense of the word? Hardly.
Just because a team is on the losing end a lot does not mean it isn't a good rivalry. Yes the Lions have struggled led mightily over the last decade but they have been very competitive at other times and in division games were always hard fought. Just this last year the Lions split with the Vikings and Packers and if not for bs rule would have split with the Bears. Those rivalries are all alive and well.

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My facts are clear, maybe I just need to reiterate them. The entire country is in a recession, not just the state of Michigan. I also stated that passionate fans find a way to get out and see their favorite teams, sometimes at the expense of their families, unfortunately. Like I said, Pennsylvania(and specifically Western Pa, where I live) falls into the same economic bracket as Michigan does. Yet we sold out the putrid Mellon Arena all 41 games last year, and have been doing so for many years, even before the Penguins started competing for Cups. And you're right, it is impossible to know the disparity between cities, and we're not economists, as both of us have noted. So the only thing we CAN look at is the numbers here, and Boston sells out its football, basketball, hockey and baseball games all year round. Their attendance is no less then 98% capacity, on average, for all four sports teams over the entire 2010 respective seasons. That does tell the story of a passionate fan base, no matter how you want to spin it. Here's the NBA numbers, which includes the Celtics(98%), and Bruins(99%).
You can reshow those numbers all you want it still means jack shit. Yes the whole country is going through a recession but if you think Michigan doesn't have it worse then the majority of the states out there then you're 100% wrong. From 2000-2009 Michigan's job losses were at 18% compared to the total US average of 0.7%. That is a huge disparity. Your numbers cannot possibly account for that and are therefore mostly irrelevant.

Your "passionate fan" line is also complete bullshit. I know plenty of passionate fans in the state of Michigan who can't afford to go to games. They still watch the games and still support the teams. Going to see a sporting event at the expense of your family doesn't make you a passionate fan it makes you an idiot.

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Only if you exclude championship pedigree, lineage, intense rivalries, and fanbase, among the, if not, the biggest factors in determining a great sports town. Boston is clearly head and shoulders above Detroit in all 4, which can and has been proved by myself throughout this and my other posts.
Championship pedigree? The Lions organization has won more Championships then the Patriots 4-3. If you say the 30-50's and times before that don't count then that means the Tigers are right there with the Red Sox. The Red Wings shit on the Bruins no matter what time period you go to. The Celtics were the original dominant NBA franchise so they have a leg up on the Pistons overall but recent history (about 20 years) the Pistons have them beat. With rivalries you completely discount most Detroit rivalries when Yankees/Red Sox is really the only huge, consistent rivalry Boston has. Fanbase like discussed earlier is impossible to gauge fairly. Detroit has plenty of lineage/history in all sports and easily beats Boston when it comes to the US's most popular sport of football. The Lions have been in Detroit since 1934. The Patriots have only existed since 1960.

So in actuality Boston isn't really ahead of Detroit in anything. Detroit is the best sports city in America.
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Old 02-10-2011, 06:21 PM
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I had my choices down to three, but seeing as how one of them (Boston) was taken, and the other (Los Angeles) is lacking a NFL team, my choice here is easy. It's the 3rd most populus city in the US. It's Chi-Town, baby.

Chicago has 5 teams, 1 in each of the major sports except for baseball (where there's two). Each team (yes, even the Cubs) has had at least mild success.

Let's start with the most successful team of these five teams, that being the NBA's team of the 90's, the Bulls. The Bulls then featured what is widely regarded as the best basketball player ever with Michael Jordan, and during that time won 6 titles, which were two 3 peats. Other then the Lakers and Celtics, nobody has more championships ever (and no one has had more titles in the past 20 years then the Bulls). Not only have they had success on the court, but they're constantly in the top 5 in overall attendance (and have filled up at least 97% of their home stadium in the past 5 seasons). Plus, the Bulls/Pistons and Bulls/Knicks were competitive and fierce rivalries in the late 80s and 90's.

The Bears have also shared their fair share of success, being home to one of the best teams ever with the 85 Super Bowl Champions and another NFC champion in 2006 (where they fell to the Colts in SB XLI). Along with their Super Bowl win, they have 8 championships pre merger and were home to iconic figures such as Dick Butkis, Mike Ditka, and Walter Payton. They are one of two teams remaining from the NFL's founding (along with the Cardinals). They have the most Hall of Famers, and have the most wins both in the regular season and total. The Bears breed success. Even though their stadium is quite small in capacity, they've done a good job of filling it up. Plus, they're apart of the most famous rivalry with the Green Bay Packers, with them having the advantage by a few games.

The Blackhawks are one of the NHL's charter original 6 franchises, and although they haven't achieved nearly as much success as the other two teams, they have 4 Stanley Cups (along with being the reigning champions). While they aren't nearly as successful as teams such as the Red Wings or Bruins, they've had their fair share of division championships and playoff berths. Speaking of the Red Wings, that is one of the main rivalries that the NHL built upon.

The White Sox have been the more successful of the two baseball franchises, having won the World Series 3 times (with the most recent being in 2005) and 4 other World Series appearances. They, like the Blackhawks and Bears, were one of the 8 AL Charter franchises, and share a fierce rivalry with their friends from the North, the Cubbies.

The Cubs, while named the 'lovable losers', has had success before (although it has been a while since this occurred). They have had 10 pennants (along with 2 World Series wins) since the MLB formed, and have had other mild success (including a few divisional titles). Wrigley Field is one of the most famous arenas in all 4 sports, and the Cubs are the oldest active North American team still remaining in their original city. They have two great rivalries, with them being against the Cardinals and White Sox. The Cubs fans are clearly loyal for sticking with their team for all these years, despite having some bad stretches.

While there are some good choices here, Chicago is the best mix of success, fan loyalty, and rivalries among best sports cities, which is why they are my choice for the question.
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Old 02-10-2011, 08:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Big Sexy View Post
Again, rivalries are nice but you seem to be putting way too much importance on them.
No, Im emphasizing them as what they are. One of the big parts of what makes a city a great sports town is the rivalries they generate. And no one city has more important rivalries then the city of Boston, past or present.

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The Lakers and Celtics are only a real rivalry when it's convenient for the media. Once Magic and Bird retired there was nearly a 20 year period where the two teams would just meet a couple times a year and the games would mean jack shit. Back in the 60's it was a real rivalry. Back in the 80's it was real rivalry, and currently because both teams are good again and the media can milk the history it's all of the sudden a real rivalry again.

It's a real rivalry because its the longest in NBA history. Like any rivalry, it goes through its ups and downs, but there's no denying that Wilt Chamberlain vs Bill Russell gave way to Larry Bird vs Magic Johnson which gave way to Kobe Bryant vs the Celtics big 3. The Pistons don't have that history with any team, and as such, don't have that rivalry.
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No one is denying the Yankees/Red Sox being the bigger of the rivalries in baseball. But if you go to hockey then Red Wings/Black Hawks shits all over any rivalries the Bruins have. You can't win off of one sports rivalry.
No, it wins off of 4 teams that have strong rivalries. The Lakers/Celtics, no matter how you discount it, is the original and most storied rivalry in NBA history, hands down. Yankees/Red Sox is the greatest rivlalry in the history of professional sports likely, let alone MLB. Ive already conceded the Hawks/Red Wings rivalry, but the Bruins/Canadiens have one heck of a rivalry as well. The Patriots are currently involved in more rivalries(Jets, Colts, Steelers, to name 3) then any other team. Boston wins based on having the greatest rivalries in the NBA and MLB history respectively, and top 5 rivalries in the NHL and the NFL.

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Just because a team is on the losing end a lot does not mean it isn't a good rivalry. Yes the Lions have struggled led mightily over the last decade but they have been very competitive at other times and in division games were always hard fought. Just this last year the Lions split with the Vikings and Packers and if not for bs rule would have split with the Bears. Those rivalries are all alive and well.
Actually it does, if you look at rivalry by the truest sense of the word. Outside of the state of Michigan(and who theyre playing) noone gives a darn about a Lions/Packers or Lions/Bears game. Pats/Steelers, Pats/Colts and Pats/Jets blow those away on a national scale, with ease. Why? because those are true rivalries, where competition is in play.


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You can reshow those numbers all you want it still means jack shit. Yes the whole country is going through a recession but if you think Michigan doesn't have it worse then the majority of the states out there then you're 100% wrong. From 2000-2009 Michigan's job losses were at 18% compared to the total US average of 0.7%. That is a huge disparity. Your numbers cannot possibly account for that and are therefore mostly irrelevant.
I didn't re-show the numbers, I added the NBA and NHL ones if you bothered to read it, having shown the NFL and MLB ones previously. And the Massachusettes unemployment rate right now is the highest that it's been in fifteen years, at 9%, and has risen every year since 2002. Is it less then Michigan rate? Sure. Is it higher then the national average? Significantly. Yet they continue to fill their stadiums, which makes those numbers entirely relevant. Attendance hasn't dropped off as unemployment has to it's highest rate in fifteen years in the state.

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Your "passionate fan" line is also complete bullshit. I know plenty of passionate fans in the state of Michigan who can't afford to go to games. They still watch the games and still support the teams. Going to see a sporting event at the expense of your family doesn't make you a passionate fan it makes you an idiot.
The passionate fan line is entirely relevant when you look at it within the context of which I said it. I simply showed that Boston, in all four major sports, fill their stadiums to capacity. How does that not reflect on the passion of the Boston sports fan? It does. I did say "unfortunately" when I added that some people go to sporting events at the expense of their family, so your argument about sporting event> providing for family is just reiterating mine.

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If you say the 30-50's and times before that don't count then that means the Tigers are right there with the Red Sox
But they do count, in terms of baseball, and it's 7-4 in favor of the Red Sox.

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The Red Wings shit on the Bruins no matter what time period you go to.
The Red Wings win this at 11-5. There's no denying that the Wings are the most dominant NHL franchise in history outside of Montreal.

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The Celtics were the original dominant NBA franchise so they have a leg up on the Pistons overall but recent history (about 20 years) the Pistons have them beat.
It's not even close here, as the Celtics own the Pistons 17-3. The Celtics still are the dominant franchise, just like Montreal is in hockey.

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With rivalries you completely discount most Detroit rivalries when Yankees/Red Sox is really the only huge, consistent rivalry Boston has.
And you're completely discounting the fact that the Celtics/Lakers is the original and longest rivalry in the history of the NBA. No other rivalry comes close in terms of length and importance to the sport. They've met more times in the playoffs then any other two teams, which is remarkable considering they play in seperate conferences.
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Detroit has plenty of lineage/history in all sports and easily beats Boston when it comes to the US's most popular sport of football.
Not since the NFL merger they haven't. The Lions have never appeared in a Super Bowl and won only playoff game since the NFL merger in 1960. The Patriots have more Lombardi trophies than the Lions have playoff victories, 3-1. Since the merger, the Lions are the ONLY franchise in the NFC who have yet to win an NFC Championship game. So it's 3-1 Boston in terms of major sports franchises.

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So in actuality Boston isn't really ahead of Detroit in anything. Detroit is the best sports city in America.
Not even close. Im loathe to give Boston credit for anything, but one thing I can say for sure. They're the best sports town in the United States, easily surpassing Detroit.
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Old 02-10-2011, 10:50 PM
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I have to say, I am really enjoying the back and forth between LSN80 and Big Sexy in this debate. Boston and Detroit are two great choices, especially Boston, which is particularly dear to my heart as a lifelong Bruins, Celtics, and Patriots fan (and a casual Red Sox fan as well). I am reading some terrific points from the two of you. There is only one fundamental flaw with both of your arguments, and that is the conspicuous absence of the correct selection in your discussion, that being New York City.

What parameters have you guys been discussing? One point has been consistency, and that is very important. The New York Yankees are the epitome of consistency. I won't bother to re-state the stats and facts, everyone is aware of them. Everyone, worldwide, on a level that few, if any other MLB teams can boast. The Mets may not have the same degree of consistency, but with the way they sound money and delve into free agency every year, they always enter the season with high expectations amongst their loyal and passionate fan base.

Rivalries are a significant aspect of the whole notion of assessing the top sports city. And the Yankees are part of one of the biggest rivalries in pro sports, along with the Red Sox. But as the Evil Empire, the Yankees have rivals across the board, to a greater extent than any other team in professional baseball. The Yankees incite a greater response from the MLB fans than anyone else. On one side of the coin, the rabid Yankees fans are numerous, but from an equally intense perspective, there are the Yankee haters. Love them or hate them, the Yankees elicit a tremendous response, and producing this response contributes to the sense of New York being a premiere sports city. The eyes of the world are always on New York, either to cheer their team on, or to pray for their demise.

The Knicks have not enjoyed much success in recent times, but that 's not to say that they have not been involved in significant rivalries. I would suggest a strong rivalry existed between Chicago and New York through the Jordan years, as the very talented bulls prevented an also very talented Patrick Ewing and company from reaching the pinnacle of the league.

The Jets have the Steelers, the Patriots, and others. The Giants have the Redskins, Cowboys, and Eagles. There are plenty of longstanding and significant rivalries involving all of the New York franchises.

I have to disagree with the suggestion that the Giants and Jets are not truly New York teams because they play and train in New Jersey. Simple fact of the matter is, they are not the New Jersey Jets or Giants. They are truly New York franchises, and any suggestion otherwise is splitting hairs.

I also find fault with the notion that Detroit is somehow more affected by financial woes due to recession concerns. As a Canadian, I am not really in a position to break down the recession in terms of who has been hit the hardest. I don't doubt that some of the information provided is accurate, but the simple fact of the matter is, the recession has been a global phenomenon and has affected every city, every franchise, every fan. I am not buying the suggestion that Detroit fans are somehow more loyal or passionate because of the financial hardship of the recession. Fans in Detroit, Boston, New York, St. john's, etc., all have to contend with financial hardships due to the current economic climate. Sports fans need to utilize a certain degree of discretionary funds to be able to afford to attend sporting events. Detroit fans do so, but so do fans everywhere else. Except they do so in New York in far greater numbers.

In the end, it all comes down to a question of numbers. Pittsburgh houses three professional sports franchises, with the obvious absence of an NBA team. Detroit has four, with representatives from all of the big four leagues. Chicago has five, with the second MLB team. New York has seven. Loyalty be damned, that sounds great in a utopian world, but seven professional teams bring more fans, more profile, more rivalries, more money, more hoopla, than 3,4, or 5 teams.

I see it like this. The question was not restricted to the concept of all of the fans rallying around one team, per sport. It was asking about the city's a whole. More teams, more people, and by default, the end result is the top sports city. The fact that there are 2 MLB teams in New York, one in the NL and one in the AL, doubles the profile and prominence of the city, without even bringing any question of loyalty into the discussion. Same can be said of the Giants and Jets, with one in the AFC and one in the NFC. The possibility exists of an all New York World Series, or an all New York Superbowl. If that ever happened, the argument of New York being the top sports city would be even further enhanced. This simply cannot happen in the other cities being discussed.

Say you have 100 sports fans in any particular city regarding the NFL for example. We have 100 Lions fans in Detroit. We have 100 Patriots fans. We have 100 fans in New York, but 50 of them are Jets fans and 50 of them prefer the Giants. How does this leave New York in lower esteem than the other two? It is still the same number of fans, and the fact that their loyalty is divided between two teams has nothing to do with the question at hand, as we still see the same number of fans. Except for in reality, we would likely see 100 Jets fans and 100 Giants fans, with an end result of 100 Detroit fans, 100 Boston fans, but 200 New York fans. The city of New York is so immense, by default they have so many more fans, that it has to result in more prominence in the sporting world for this city. You cannot fault the city or the fans because of the enormity of the city in terms of geography or population. More people, more attention, and the end result is clear. The best sports city, in terms of fan base, inherent rivalries, consistency, stadiums, championship pedigree, or whatever other parameters you want to examine, has to be seen to be New York. My personal choice would be, in all honest, Boston. But the question was not who I wanted to see the best sports city to be, or who I liked the most. The question was which city was truly the sports Mecca of the world. And as much as the haters may try to suggest otherwise, if has to be the Big Apple.
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Old 02-11-2011, 01:33 AM
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Originally Posted by hatehabsforever View Post
I have to say, I am really enjoying the back and forth between LSN80 and Big Sexy in this debate. Boston and Detroit are two great choices, especially Boston, which is particularly dear to my heart as a lifelong Bruins, Celtics, and Patriots fan (and a casual Red Sox fan as well). I am reading some terrific points from the two of you. There is only one fundamental flaw with both of your arguments, and that is the conspicuous absence of the correct selection in your discussion, that being New York City.
So glad you decided to weigh in! Id love to show you how New York is NOT the best sports city.

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What parameters have you guys been discussing? One point has been consistency, and that is very important. The New York Yankees are the epitome of consistency. I won't bother to re-state the stats and facts, everyone is aware of them. Everyone, worldwide, on a level that few, if any other MLB teams can boast. The Mets may not have the same degree of consistency, but with the way they sound money and delve into free agency every year, they always enter the season with high expectations amongst their loyal and passionate fan base.
As consistent as the Yankees are in terms of winning, they've been just as consistent in terms of losing. While they've won the most World Series in MLB history(27), they've also lost the most. Their recent track record is quite mediocre in fact, as they've gone 9-10 in the last decade in playoff series, and 1-2 in the World Series. The Mets have gone 2-3 over the past decade in the playoffs, and 0-1 in the World Series. The Red Sox? 8-4 over the past decade in the playoffs, and 2-0 in the World Series. When it comes to consistency over the past decade, it's advantage Boston.

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Rivalries are a significant aspect of the whole notion of assessing the top sports city. And the Yankees are part of one of the biggest rivalries in pro sports, along with the Red Sox. But as the Evil Empire, the Yankees have rivals across the board, to a greater extent than any other team in professional baseball.
There's no contention that the Yankees and Red Sox share the greatest rivalry in all of baseball, and likely professional sports. But it takes two to tango, so to speak, and the series isn't as lopsided as one would think. Specifically, the rivalry has gotten more competitive in the past three years with the season series going 9-9 in 2008, 2009, and 2010, and the head-to-head playoff series' is only 11-8 Yankees, so it's quite even in terms of the rivalry itself.

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The Yankees incite a greater response from the MLB fans than anyone else. On one side of the coin, the rabid Yankees fans are numerous, but from an equally intense perspective, there are the Yankee haters. Love them or hate them, the Yankees elicit a tremendous response, and producing this response contributes to the sense of New York being a premiere sports city. The eyes of the world are always on New York, either to cheer their team on, or to pray for their demise.
The biggest reason the Yankees and Mets are universally hated is the fact that they throw rediculous amounts of money on over-priced free agents. It should be noted that it's the greed, not anything "premiere", that makes the New York teams hated. And a big part of being a "rabid fan" is loyalty, which is a quality New York baseball sports fan are completely devoid of. If they're winning, the fans show up. When they lose, the fans turn on them. Loyalty is not a strong suit of the New York sports fan, which is a huge argument againstNew York being the greatest sports town.

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The Knicks have not enjoyed much success in recent times, but that 's not to say that they have not been involved in significant rivalries. I would suggest a strong rivalry existed between Chicago and New York through the Jordan years, as the very talented bulls prevented an also very talented Patrick Ewing and company from reaching the pinnacle of the league.
Lets take a closer look at the so called "rivalry" between the Knicks and the Bulls, shall we? During the 7 times the Bulls and Knicks met in the playoffs throughout the late 80's-mid 90's, the Knicks went 1-6 against the Bulls, with their only win coming in the year when Jordan retired. During this span, the Knicks were 12-24 in the playoffs against the Bulls. As I've stated previously, a rivalry is defined by competitiveness among two evenly matched teams. This rivalry was easily trumped by Bulls/Pistons, Celtics/Lakers, Lakers/Bulls, and Lakers/Spurs. Overall, the Knicks have won only 2 NBA titles, the last being in 1973. The Celtics have won 17 overall, so it's a large advantage to Boston once again. While winning isn't the end-all, be-all, it's certainly a factor. Rivalries are as well, and any rivalry the Knicks have had simply doesn't compare to the Celtics/Lakers rivalry. In the NBA, both in terms of winning and rivalries, Boston easily comes out on top.

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Fans in Detroit, Boston, New York, St. john's, etc., all have to contend with financial hardships due to the current economic climate. Sports fans need to utilize a certain degree of discretionary funds to be able to afford to attend sporting events. Detroit fans do so, but so do fans everywhere else. Except they do so in New York in far greater numbers.In the end, it all comes down to a question of numbers. Pittsburgh houses three professional sports franchises, with the obvious absence of an NBA team. Detroit has four, with representatives from all of the big four leagues. Chicago has five, with the second MLB team. New York has seven. Loyalty be damned, that sounds great in a utopian world, but seven professional teams bring more fans, more profile, more rivalries, more money, more hoopla, than 3,4, or 5 teams.
Since you want to look at this simply as a matter of numbers, lets examine that as well, according to the statistics I provided from ESPN.com. No sports town utilizes "discretionary funds" toward supporting their sports teams among towns with teams in all 4 sports then Boston does. In the NHL, the Bruins fill their rink at 99%. The Islanders fill their rink at 78%, while the Rangers do at 99%. In the NBA, the Celtics fill their arena at 98%,
as do the Knicks. In the NFL, The Jets and Giants both fill their stadiums at 95%, while the Patriots do at 100%. Finally in baseball, the Yankees fill their stadium at 89%, while the Mets do at 77%. The Red Sox fill their stadium at 100%. Again, in terms of using funs to best support their team, Boston gets the nod. This also furthers my contention that New York fans only support their team when they're doing well, and even pale in comparison to the Boston teams with their winning franchises. Fickleness in loyalty does not equate to a good sports town. When it comes to fan support, Boston also gets the nod over New York.


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I see it like this. The question was not restricted to the concept of all of the fans rallying around one team, per sport. It was asking about the city's a whole. More teams, more people, and by default, the end result is the top sports city. The fact that there are 2 MLB teams in New York, one in the NL and one in the AL, doubles the profile and prominence of the city, without even bringing any question of loyalty into the discussion. Same can be said of the Giants and Jets, with one in the AFC and one in the NFC. The possibility exists of an all New York World Series, or an all New York Superbowl. If that ever happened, the argument of New York being the top sports city would be even further enhanced. This simply cannot happen in the other cities being discussed.
No, it doesn't restrict the idea to fans rallying around one team in any one sport. But quantity doesn't always equal quality, and the city of New York is the primeexample of this. Despite all the "prominence" and spending and hoopla, more fans show up for Boston sporting events. The rivalries amongst Boston sports teams trumps the rivalries amongst New York sports teams, as does the overall champkionship legacies. New York is a one trick pony when it comes to professional sports. While the Yankees have won 27 World Series, the Mets have only won 2. The Knicks have only won 2 NBA championships. The Rangers have won 1 Stanley Cup, the Islanders 4. The Jets have won 1 Super Bowl, the Giants 2. Quantity certainly doesn't equal quality, at least not in New York. The Celtics have won 17 NBA titles,the Bruins 5 Stanley Cups, The Red Sox 7 World Series, and the Patriots 3 Super Bowls. So with 7 sports teams, the New York teams have won 39 titles, while the Boston teams have won 32 titles with 4 teams. That's an average of 8 titles per sports team, while New York averages 5.6. So when looking at quality, Boston's 8 wins per team tops New Yorks 5.6 per team.

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You cannot fault the city or the fans because of the enormity of the city in terms of geography or population. More people, more attention, and the end result is clear. The best sports city, in terms of fan base, inherent rivalries, consistency, stadiums, championship pedigree, or whatever other parameters you want to examine, has to be seen to be New York. My personal choice would be, in all honest, Boston. But the question was not who I wanted to see the best sports city to be, or who I liked the most. The question was which city was truly the sports Mecca of the world. And as much as the haters may try to suggest otherwise, if has to be the Big Apple.
I don't fault the city or the fans because of its enormity, I fault them for their loyalty, or lack thereof. Loyalty plays a large part in determining a great sports town, and I've shown how New York sports fans are quite fickle. They're a one-trick pony in terms of rivalries, as the Red Sox are the only large, long term, New York rivalry. Championship pedigree is also largely a one-trick pony, as it's the Yankees and everyone else. It's quite apparent as we've examined the facts that in terms of a loyal fan base across sports, rivalries, championship pedigree, consistency, and overall top sporting town, the clear, logical choice is Beantown, Boston.
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