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smzimbabwe

Why root for the home team?

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I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that "home" is more a concept than a physical thing. I mean, take the Rams. I went to some of their games when I was little, then they were moved to St. Louis for the majority of my life. But, I never forgot going to those games and enjoying them. So for 21 years, I still followed the Rams, even though they had no physical impact whatsoever. The house moved, but not the home, so to speak. 

 

So, it's like what everyone else said. You get attached to some local team and thus you can follow them and talk about them with your friends and family. They say places like Fenway and Wrigley are homes away from home. I'm sure they are. 

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I stick with the Jazz because 1) too strong a bond through locale, family tradition and such, but also 2) I really admire and respect how the franchise has been run. In the grand scheme of things, their lack of championships puts them lower on the league totem pole, and I get that. I get it would be easier to root for a team with a more storied history and better success rate. But the Jazz have been a top class organization for years, and even beyond all my bonds to them as a born and raised Utahan, that culture they’ve built speaks volumes to me as a fan. The Millers have been very, very good owners and you can trust them, which is I’m sure more than can be said for other owners.

 

Not having a ring sucks, losing stars to bigger markets sucks, and usually being an afterthought league-wide sucks, but there’s a whole lot of good to being a Jazz fan that keeps me going anyways.

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On 10/12/2017 at 12:23 PM, FinsUp1214 said:

I stick with the Jazz because 1) too strong a bond through locale, family tradition and such, but also 2) I really admire and respect how the franchise has been run. In the grand scheme of things, their lack of championships puts them lower on the league totem pole, and I get that. I get it would be easier to root for a team with a more storied history and better success rate. But the Jazz have been a top class organization for years, and even beyond all my bonds to them as a born and raised Utahan, that culture they’ve built speaks volumes to me as a fan. The Millers have been very, very good owners and you can trust them, which is I’m sure more than can be said for other owners.

 

Not having a ring sucks, losing stars to bigger markets sucks, and usually being an afterthought league-wide sucks, but there’s a whole lot of good to being a Jazz fan that keeps me going anyways.

Same with me. Born and raised in Utah. They are the only team I really have a strong like for. I follow Real Salt Lake even though I'm not a big soccer fan too.

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On 10/3/2017 at 5:41 AM, Graham_Clayton said:

When I started following the VFL/AFL in the late 1970's, the league consisted of 11 teams in Melbourne and one team not in Melbourne - the Geelong Cats. I decided to follow them, being the only team not from Melbourne. Since then two teams from my home town of Sydney have entered the league (Sydney Swans and GWS Giants), but I still continue to follow the Cats.

 

This is bizarre to me. I admittedly know nothing about the AFL other than "some of the team names" and "the cool two-hand pointy thing the referee does when they score," but I had been under the impression that it had been a more nationwide competition for much longer - more of the "American" model of sports franchises (no more than 2-3 major teams in the same league to a city). Now that you bring that up, it makes sense that the AFL evolved more under what I would consider a "British/European" model (multiple "neighborhood" teams to a city). 

 

But 11 in Melbourne alone + Geelong (which is what, an hour from Melbourne?) surprises me. I figured the large cities in Victoria, NSW, and the general Southeast (Brisbane, Sydney, Wollongong, Adelaide, etc.) would've always had teams.

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Because if they don't win it's a shame.

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On 2017-09-28 at 11:38 PM, smzimbabwe said:

So what draws you to your "home" team even though they may not operate the way you like and if you moved, would your favorite teams change as well?

I root for the Leafs, Raptors, TFC, and Blue Jays because Toronto’s pretty much the centre of southern Ontario. I became a Ti-Cats fan because I thought it was cool that there was a pro team in southern Ontario that Wasn’t Toronto(tm). 

 

I’ve seen it expressed that it’s illogical to root for a team just because they’re the “local” option. That at the end of the day they’re just a business that happens to operate in your home town because it’s profitable. They have no real loyalty to the community beyond what they can sell to it. 

 

All of that is true. And it doesn’t matter one bit to me.

All sports fandom is illogical. If you think you’re a more “enlightened” sports fan because you’ve ditched illogical homerism to root for someone else? Well you’re kidding yourself. 

 

Like a team because of the nickname and/or uniform? So what? It’s just marketing meant to draw you in. 

 

Like a team because of a star player? The team will likely be there long after that player leaves or retires.

Not to mention rooting for a millionaire who doesn’t care about you is not better than rooting for a corporation that doesn’t care about you. 

 

Like a team because your parents liked them? So what? My dad loves Steely Dan.

 

Rooting for a hometown team is illogical, but so is every other reason to root for a pro sports team. 

So all things being equal? I’ll take the local option. At least there’s a communal aspect to it, as illogical as it may be. 

 

As for who I’d root for if my “hometown” teams relocated?

NHL: Jets

MLB: White Sox 

NBA: Jazz

CFL: Roughriders 

MLS: Red Bull because why not?

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5 hours ago, Ice_Cap said:

Like a team because your parents liked them? So what? My dad loves Steely Dan.

 

You say that like it's a bad thing.

 

"Bodhisattva, won't you take me by the hand..."

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21 hours ago, Ice_Cap said:

I’ve seen it expressed that it’s illogical to root for a team just because they’re the “local” option. That at the end of the day they’re just a business that happens to operate in your home town because it’s profitable. They have no real loyalty to the community beyond what they can sell to it. 

 

I’ve seen that as well, but I don’t think that’s a very good argument.  

 

You root for a hometown team not because the players or owners are local (which hasn’t been the case since the 1880s), but because the fans are.

 

A sports team can bind together a community as people from all parts of society come together to share a common experience.  That experience can be heightened if the people who contribute to it have a local connection, but it’s never been necessary. 

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On 10/14/2017 at 2:12 PM, Ice_Cap said:

Like a team because your parents liked them? So what? My dad loves Steely Dan.

 

I cannot and will not stand for trash-talking Steely Dan.

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On 10/14/2017 at 3:12 PM, Ice_Cap said:

 

As for who I’d root for if my “hometown” teams relocated?

NHL: Jets

MLB: White Sox 

NBA: Jazz

CFL: Roughriders 

MLS: Red Bull because why not?

 

I would have to base my list on my childhood teams, when I based my favorites on the coolness uniforms and logos/or teams that were expansions and just getting started.

 

NHL- Florida Panthers

MLB- Florida Marlins 

NBA- Charlotte Hornets 

NFL- LA/Oakland Raiders

 

 

 

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I don't root for any hometown teams. I actually chose each of my favorite teams based on my favorite players were and just stuck with those teams. I may be the only Lions, Angels, Red Wings and Suns fan on the planet, but I'm cool with it.

 

Now, I'll go to a Phillies game and cheer them on, provided they're not playing the Angels. I'll go to a Flyers or Eagles game and hope they lose, honestly. I do consider myself a fan of the Orioles, who I grew up watching, but aren't really "hometown" for me. My dad just took us to Baltimore to watch a decent team play in a gorgeous stadium rather than watch the mid-90s Phillies play at the Vet.

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On 15/10/2017 at 4:23 AM, sc49erfan15 said:

 

This is bizarre to me. I admittedly know nothing about the AFL other than "some of the team names" and "the cool two-hand pointy thing the referee does when they score," but I had been under the impression that it had been a more nationwide competition for much longer - more of the "American" model of sports franchises (no more than 2-3 major teams in the same league to a city). Now that you bring that up, it makes sense that the AFL evolved more under what I would consider a "British/European" model (multiple "neighborhood" teams to a city). 

 

But 11 in Melbourne alone + Geelong (which is what, an hour from Melbourne?) surprises me. I figured the large cities in Victoria, NSW, and the general Southeast (Brisbane, Sydney, Wollongong, Adelaide, etc.) would've always had teams.

 

sc49erfan15,

National football competitions have only been around in Australia since the late 1970's, when the old NSL (National Soccer League) started, followed by the NRL and VFL in the early 1980's. Prior to that, all of the various leagues of all codes were based in each State, and with the capital city being the biggest city in each state, the teams were based in the various suburbs of those cities, eg the the Western Australian Football League has all of its teams in Perth, the South Australian National Football League has all of its teams based in Adelaide for example. 

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On 10/2/2017 at 6:42 PM, Gothamite said:

Ultimately, and I've said it before, sports fandom is an intensely personal thing. It's like falling in love, you can't force it if it's not there.  And sometimes you can't deny it even if you want to

 

But for myself, I can never cheer for a team if I don't have a personal connection to the city. That's my own personal hang up. I tried really hard to get into MLS a couple years back, before New York had a club. So I tried to adopt first the Union (because I liked their branding) and then the Timbers (because I went to Oregon and used to go up to games in Portland). But they both felt forced and artificial to me, so I never really got into it. And then, when we got a club of our own, I fell madly in love. You just can't force this. 

I've tried.  When the North Stars moved, I decided I was a Red Wings fan.  Why?  Why else? Uniforms.  After all, I needed to still have a hockey team and the North Stars were dead to me.  It didn't take.  In fact, their first finals appearance was against the Devils and I was kind of ambivalent about who'd win, as I enjoyed seeing Neal Broten get a ring.  When they finally did win, I was about as happy as I usually am when the team I kind of prefer wins a championship.  Meh.

 

Interesting. I've never actually been a fan of a team I wanted to dislike.  But sometimes I find myself surprised in neutral games.  For example, I cheer against the Indians because of Wahoo.  I want them to lose all the time.  Or, at least, I want to want them to lose all the time.  But I found myself pulling for them vs. the Yankees.  That I suspect the Yankees are going to be around for a long, long time and maybe Cleveland's drought outweighed my hate for the logo.  I'd remind myself "cheer against them" but ultimately, I just admitted that I was pulling for them.  

 

As for the topic at hand, I don't think there's a right or wrong.  I grew up in what has been, off-and-on, a four-team town.  Growing up cheering for the Twins, Vikings, T-Wolves (and North Stars) embedded these teams in me.  It's corny to say, but there's a sense of community, if you will.  The Twin Cities was buzzing in 1987 when the Twins made their first postseason appearance in my life.  When I moved away, I remained a fan.  Now, I've never lived anywhere else with pro teams (College in Madison, grad school in Iowa, jobs in Peoria IL and Connecticut).  Had I lived in, say, Philadelphia, would any of their teams have supplanted my teams?  Doubt it but given that I'd never lived in Minnesota with the Wild, maybe I'd have been a Flyers fan.  (of course Wisconsin replaced Minnesota in college, but I think being on campus is a huge part of that)

 

That said, if you want to have no team (as some here tout of themselves) or be, for some reason, a fan of a team from elsewhere, that's OK. There's no right or wrong.  I admit I'm put off by frontrunners; for example I have two friends that are Patriots fans (though one did like them as early as the mid-1990s).  I don't understand changing teams over time and how you get excited when your Lakers, Patriots, Cubs, and Blackhawks win championships...but I guess it's none of my business.

 

My friend who liked the Patriots in the mid-1990s is also a Cubs fan.  And has been since before I knew him...why?  Because he grew up babysitting his younger brothers and watched the Cubs on WGN.  All the day games brought him in.  I was always with the home team.  To each their own I guess.

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