Being a sports fan can be rewarding. Unless you happen to live in one of these cities.
There is something magical about living in a successful sports city. When the city your team okay in has a winning tradition, food tastes better…music sounds clearer…even the beers are colder! However, the opposite is absolutely true.
There are several reasons why a particular place can be considered a miserable sports city. Be it crappy team performance, an uneducated, disinterested fan base, more attractive entertainment options, many things can drive a sports city to sheer misery.
Here are currently the 7 worst sports cities.
7. Washington, D.C.
Major Sports Teams: Capitals, Nationals, Wizards, Washington NFL franchise
The nation’s capital is one of the worst sport cities in America mainly because the city has six championships but the last title was won 25 years ago by its NFL team that continues to use a racial epithet as its mascot. Their owner, Daniel Snyder, is one of the least respected in the NFL. The NBA’s Wizards won one NBA Championship back in 1978 when they were known as the Bullets. Now they’re just known as the place Michael Jordan’s career went to die. The Nationals have never been to the World Series, let alone won it. The NHL’s Capitals have not won the Stanley Cup and made their only appearance back in 1998.
Major Sports Teams: Timberwolves, Twins, Vikings, Wild
Great fans! Minneapolis is one of those cities that deserve another championship from one of it’s major professional franchises. The city has only three championships, with the last title coming over 25 years ago by the Twins. The Minnesota Vikings have lost in every Super Bowl they’ve appeared in (4). The Timberwolves don’t seem close. And, most people have to do a Google search to remember that the “Wild” exist in the NHL. Mediocrity, close calls and bad weather are a perfect combination for sports misery.
Major Sports Teams: Cardinals, Coyotes, Diamondbacks, Suns
Phoenix sports teams always seem to lack an identity. Likely because they rarely have a true homegrown superstar. I love Larry Fitzgerald — he’s a top 10 receiver of all-time — but he’s not moving the national meter as a star. Other than Charles Barkley, Randy Johnson and Blaine Gabbert (gotcha!), the main attractions are just missing, traditionally. Also, there is a lack of championship history to garner franchise loyalty. The Diamondbacks won the city’s only title, a World Series in 2001.
4. San Diego
Major Sports Teams: Padres
Beautiful city with attractive beaches…but when it comes to sports? Ewwww. Just one championship in your history and you just lost your NFL team to L.A.? Chances are you’re gonna make this list. San Diego is one of the worst sports cities, as its only earned one championship…and it came 53 years ago! It is now the longest professional championship drought among all the cities on this list. The Padres remain as the lone pro franchise in San Diego. The Chargers won the AFL Championsip once, way back in 1963. The San Diego Padres have never won the World Series and have appeared twice back in 1984 and in 1998. Sheesh! If you’re a sports fan in San Diego, it may be best for you to adopt a team from another city at this point.
Major Sports Teams: Bengals, Reds
Cincinnati fans generally seem to be a hopeless bunch. The Bengals have continued to employ a head coach that hasn’t won a single playoff game during his 15-year tenure. And the Reds are pretty horrible right now. The combination of bad teams, bad weather and a dearth of alternative entertainment options earn Cincy a hearty spot on this list. On top of that, they share a state with Cleveland, who currently boasts the Cavs and Indians — both considered successful right now. Keep your head up Cincinnati…you’ll always have that amazing chili!!!
Major Sports Teams: Braves, Falcons, Hawks | Titles: 1
If I could sum Atlanta sports in one reference, it’s the fact that Dominique Wilkins has a statue outside Phillips arena. Win a few dunk contests and they erect a statue in your honor in the A! I lived in Atlanta for 10 years, so I know first-hand just how putrid a sports city it can be. Just an awful combination of team mediocrity, fan aloofness and a myriad of alternate entertainment options. One of the biggest disappointments during my interactions with Atlanta sports fans was their outright acceptance of “almost” winning championships. The Braves, Falcons & Hawks are traditionally the epitome of bland. Save for the time MC Hammer frequented the Falcons’ sidelines! But, hey, when you’ve got Magic City, World Of Coke and Atlantic Station…who needs some lousy trophy case anyway?
Major Sports Teams: Bills, Sabres
And the city with the dubious distinction of being the worst sports city in America…Buffalo, NY! Buffalo is the home to two professional franchises, the Bills and Sabres. There is nary a Super Bowl or Stanley Cup title between the two. The Bills won a pair of NFL championships back in 1964 and 1965, but I doubt if they can even locate those old, wooden trophies now. On top of that, they took an L four straight Super Bowls from 1991-93. The Buffalo Sabres have never won the Stanley Cup, making appearances the finals twice (1975 and 1999). Buffalo sports fans continue to hold out hope for a championship team to arrive soon. Until then, they can enjoy the snow. I wonder how many Buffalo sports fans would give up wings for life in exchange of a Super Bowl or Stanley Cup.