The fan boycott is an interesting case, especially in the NBA.
1) Big markets are immune to a boycott from fans because they sell a ton of corporate packages.
2) Small market teams, the Bucks in particular, and the Pacers I think as well, have always wanted to put out competitive teams because if they felt like if they didn't people wouldn't come. The result was that both teams looked like "treadmill teams". Pacers were able to break through that for about 1.75 seasons, and now look a treadmill team again (although it's possible that it could change). Milwaukee despite, trying to be in playoff contention has fallen off the map that last couple of years. What's interesting, is that a group of "hardcore" Bucks fans, successfully raised $5000 USD to put the following billboard up in Milwaukee...
In this instance, the hardcore fans were advocating that the team be worse in order to be better in the long term.
I am a legit fan, heck I think I'm approaching my 5 year anniversary of posting on this site, but I would have been 100% happy if the Lowry to the Knicks trade had gone through. If Lowry had walked this offseason, I would have been pissed that the trade didn't go through. Since we resigned Lowry and are a lock for the playoffs this year I'm happy with the team as is (although, I'm still not sure how we break through to the conference finals or the NBA finals, but I'll leave that to Ujiri).
"hardcore" fans are a tiny fraction of the total market, so from a business perspective it makes a lot more sense to cater to the casual fan than the hardcore one.
Getting upset about how other people cheer for/consume a sport we like is a waste of energy. The league wouldn't exist without them.
Also, most of the annoying things they say, they say on purpose to those they know who are big fans of a different team. For instance, when Lebron went to Miami, my sister--whose never watched an entire basketball game in her life-- said to me, "Dude, your Raptors are in trouble. I'm cheering for the Miami Flames, because they got Lenard James, and he's like the best basketball player in the world, right?" Since she's my sister, it was more funny than annoying.
"They're going to have to rename the whole conference after us: Toronto Raptors 2014-2015 Northern Conference Champions" ~ ezzbee
"We only have one rule on this team. What is that rule? E.L.E. That's right's, E.L.E, and what does E.L.E. stand for? EVERYBODY LOVE EVERYBODY. Right there up on the wall, because this isn't just a basketball team, this is a lifestyle. ~ Jackie Moon
What are you expecting to accomplish by boycotting a bad team though? I know it's hard to believe given the results some times but pretty much all of these teams are already trying everything possible to be successful.
Every now and again you'll get the egregious cases like Sarver of the Suns selling off draft pick after draft pick during the 2000's to save coin (while he had a really good team at the time and was presumably making a lot of money) or a clown like Sterling who undermined his own team for decades with his behaviour, but for the most part all these guys are already trying their best to win.
It's not like being good is as simple as snapping your fingers and deciding that you're going to do it now. There always has to be losers; wins and success are finite in sports. You could have 30 teams doing everything they possibly can to win an NBA title and there's still going to be a bunch of them that finish with terrible records. Boycotting these teams would just takes away another resource from them while they need all the help they can get fighting an uphill battle.
I'm fine with Bandwagoners as long as they don't claim they've been fans for a long time. Like before they were alot of heat bandwagoners that denied they started watching when the Big Three came
Nevermind what haters say,
ignore them ítil they fade away. - T.I
Casual fans of a sport are more interested in watching a local team win than lose. So what.
Also, for the number of times boycotting is proposed as a course of action vs. the number of times it actually becomes a course of action must be about 7 billion to one. You generally lose fans if a crappy team is mismanaged for too long, but that's the only way. Do enough of that in the current era, and you're more likely to lose your team than to "force" ownership to do anything constructive. What's the precedent for that?
I had no problem with the bandwagon jumpers last year. Especially for the casual basketball fan, you can't expect them to sit through the shit of the last few years and get excited about it.
I do have a problem with grown ass men claiming to be Heat fans (last year) like they always followed the team or something and don't even live in the states, never mind Miami. The people that just wanna cheer for the winning team are effin lame yo.
Personally I've always had an affinity for the underdog, so last year helps make up for a lot of bad years when I was trying to get excited about Roko Ukic or something.
Eh follow my TWITTER!
That's part of what made last season so great - Raps played a lot of well above average team basketball. Fun to watch.
I don't think boycotting is done intentionally as protest against a team for the most part. It's just that a team that is a bottom feeder is not much fun. You have no prospects for achieving anything, so every game basically amounts to an exhibition, except with bad players.
Sometimes there's some fun in cheering for the team of the future, but there's also better entertainment options out there.
The idea of boycotting is also ignoring the global brand. I live in Halifax and have cheered for the Raps since the beginning (but I'll watch any good game). Other than the year I lived in Toronto, I do not attend games. I rarely buy apparel anymore except maybe baby clothes or the odd shirt/hat (once you hit 30, it's harder to wear that stuff without being at a game). So MLSE gets no direct money from me. But I watch/record every game I can. I watch post game interviews online. I post (several thousand times) on RR. I use the Raps for NBA2K.
Everything a Raps fan should do, but since I can't go to live games, then my impact is irrelevant financially to them. So the idea of boycott simply isn't feasible for anyone outside of the GTA, which makes me question the effectiveness of it for even those in the GTA. If you have been on RR for a while, you know that we have users from all over Canada and some overseas (shout out to the Lithuanians on here!). We are the hardcore Raps fans and many of us don't register on the MLSE financially screen, so how much impact do you expect by boycotting?
I think if you want to make a difference you have to let the team know through media. Social media, news talk, online forums, however you can get the message out is the only way to get your opinion out there. Then you need to hope that you have an owner who cares because if the owner doesn't care none of it matters.
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