What makes a city a great sports city? For many, sports are all they have, next to the bar across the street from the stadium and/or area and the new Wal-Mart, but there’s more to it than that. It’s not just about winning championships. It’s about the passion of the fans as well as tradition and the overall culture of the city and how they embrace a team. Top 5 lists the Greatest Sports Cities that meet these criteria.
Another great city with a long-standing tradition in sports. And contrary to popular belief, it didn’t all begin with Michael Jordan and the Bulls. Chicago is as passionate as places such as Boston and New York, but not nearly as obnoxious. You have to remember, this is the same town that not only has the Bulls, Bears, Blackhawks and White Sox, and it is also the same city with the Cubs. The Cubs for over 100 years did not win a World Series. But Cubs fans are diehards, patient and never gave up hope. Year after year they turn out to the great Wrigley Field in droves to see if this will finally be their year. They finally won a World Series again in 2016.
Only in Dallas could you have a team called “America’s Team,” the Cowboys. The old Cowboys Stadium used to have a big hole in the roof so “God could see the Cowboys play.” Let’s overlook the fact that they haven’t won anything since the first Bill Clinton administration, but they are a national sports institution. Dallas seems to win at everything, and loves sports as much as their cowboy hats. Dallas even has a Stanley Cup-winning hockey team in the Stars. Owner Mark Cuban may be one of the best owners in the NBA (or worst and most annoying depending on who you talk to). He did something no one else could by turning the Mavericks into a winner and a champion. Even the Rangers, in spite of losing two World Series are a force to be reckoned with at times.
Top 5 makes a lot of fun of Boston, but this is another city with some of the most loyal and annoying fans in the country that has a tradition of turning out winners and contenders every year. The teams are legendary and have been around since this country was founded. Boston is one of America’s most historic towns and is the only city in the past decade that has won a championship in all four major sports – NFL, NHL NBA and Major League Baseball. Its heated rivalry with New York in everything from baseball to just who walks better down the street is one of the greatest in the nation.
2.) New York
Now here is a city where winning isn’t just a tradition – it’s required! If you don’t win in this city, you’ll find yourself playing in someplace like New Jersey or Canada. The city that never sleeps seems to never lose. Just look at the Yankees and their 27 World Series championships. There’s the Giants with their most recent Super Bowl wins. Fans in New York are loyal, if not just flat out crazy even to their teams, whose mottos are “wait until next year,” like the Jets, Knicks, Mets and Rangers. Madison Square Garden is a national sports landmark. New York is such a dominant sports city that it imposed its will on New Jersey where the Jets and Giants still call themselves “New York.”
1.) Los Angeles
Say what you will about L.A., but name another town where you get A-List celebrities to attend games and leave early each night. It’s a town where any rookie or free agent can come and be an instant celebrity. Oh, and there are some pretty good teams too. Playing all in one building – Staples Center, you have the Lakers, Kings, and WNBA’s Sparks all with championship banners. There are so many banners and flags flying in the place that it doesn’t need air conditioning. And you just wait! The Clippers will have one of their own soon. Down the street is the legendary Coliseum, home of two Olympics, the USC Trojans football team, which is almost like having a professional team. Just north of Downtown L.A. you have the friendly confines of Dodgers Stadium and the Dodger, and UCLA at the Rose Bowl. Both UCLA and USC dominate the national college sports scene with more national championships than any two local schools in the nation. And south of Downtown L.A. at the Stub Hub Center, you have three-time Major League Soccer champion L.A. Galaxy. Ok. And of course, The Los Angeles Rams won the 2022 NFL Super Bowl.
The City by the Bay is not only a great sports town; it’s also one of the most beautiful in the world. With the landmark Golden Gate Bridge as well as some of the greatest restaurants and culture, it is also home to the 49’ers and Giants. The fans are passionate, but not nearly as obnoxious as those in other cities, especially those a few hundred miles south in L.A. San Francisco is one of the few sports cities that can put those snobby, cosmetic surgery addicted clones from L.A. in their place.
Two things Philly fans don’t play around with – sports and cheese steak sandwiches. This is a town where the fans are so obnoxious that they once booed Santa Claus during an Eagles game and booed when probable Hall of Fame quarterback Donovan McNabb was drafted by the Eagles. These nuts cheered wildly when Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Michael Irvin couldn’t move after being injured during a game with the Eagles. Their current Eagles QB served time in prison for torturing dogs and they love him. And that’s just their football fans. Go to any game in Philadelphia and you leave your life is in your own hands.
Green Bay only has one team in the Packers and they are publicly owned. How passionate are the locals about their team? Have you ever tried getting a ticket to a Packers game? Good luck with that one.