If you’ve ever been within earshot of a conversation about basketball, you would know that along with debates about who’s the best athlete, the best team and who will win the championship, you’ll hear bantering about who is a bandwagon fan.
I’m here to be that impartial friend that gives you a nudge to let you know when you are riding on some team’s bandwagon.
You ARE NOT on the bandwagon if:
1. You were with a team last season but you pick a different this season [you must choose that new team before the season starts].
Teams change, players leave/come in, coaches get fired- it’s just the nature of the game. You have every right to jump ship while it’s still at the dock (aka before the season starts). There is NO rule that says you have to stay with one team for the rest of your life, especially if ample changes were made.
2. Your favorite player gets traded/switches teams; i.e. Lebron James.
I get it. You’ve loved him ever since he was in high school and you loved him while he was in Cleveland. Although you were ride-or-die, head-to-toe Cleveland from 2003-2010, now you’re ride-or-die, head-to-toe Miami…and you know what? It’s ok.
3. Team franchise moves into your backyard; i.e. OKC, Brooklyn Nets.
Sports brings dissimilar people together all the time. I know people who have watched a mere game and a half of the Knicks but because they were born and raised in NYC, they’ll tell you they’re a Knicks fan. A huge part of sports is being proud of your hometown and the team that’s representing your hometown. I guarantee you, not even half of the current OKC fans were Supersonic fans…and its ok.
4. You pick one team but you also root for another team because of a personal connection with a player/coach.
If Tommy loves the Knicks but his girlfriend’s dad is the coach of the Celtics, it’s ok for Tommy to go with both teams. There are some instances where you really don’t have a choice but to cheer for a team, even if you don’t really believe in their abilities. Doesn’t make you a bandwagon fan. Let Tommy live.
5. You aren’t DIE-HARD for any team, you haven’t picked a team to win, and you don’t have any attachment to any team, you just enjoy watching the sport. (This applies especially if you work in the industry and have to have a level of impartiality)
We all know what a die-hard fan is, we’ve seen them plenty of times. There are clothed in their team’s garb from head to toe, face paint, team screensaver, team sticker on the cell phone case, team paraphernalia in the car/office- and most importantly, not afraid to fight or go to jail for their team. It would be blasphemous for a die hard fan to cheer on another team. Fair weather fan? Perfectly fine to pick a different team every game.
You ARE on the bandwagon if:
1. You picked a team at the beginning of the season but after they’ve lost a game or two, you start noticing how good a different team looks.
You saw the rosters before the season started. If you pick a team at the beginning of the season thinking they’re going to kill yet they can’t seem to get it together, you’re stuck with them. Count this season out. It’s ok to start looking at a team for next year, though [silently].
2. Your team isn’t where you thought they would be after they barely secured the 8th seed in the playoffs.
You can’t possibly think it’s ok to jump ship right before the playoffs…LOL.
3. Your team’s franchise moves into your backyard but you don’t switch teams until after they win a few games.
I’ve seen this happen a couple of times this season. It starts with the, ‘oh, I just like their gear’, then it escalates to, ‘my friend hooked me up with these tickets,’ then here comes, ‘I’m catching another game because the arena is so dope,’ until finally it’s, ‘Broooooookln’. You were blue and orange all summer and into the preseason and now it’s all black everything? Stop it.
4. Your favorite player moves to a team but you don’t switch to their team immediately OR all of a sudden your favorite player changes mid-season.
If you decide to ride it out with OKC knowing that your favorite player is James Harden, you’re stuck with OKC. Don’t wait until he drops two consecutive 40-point games and then say you’re leaving with James. On top of that, pick a side. It’s not ok to switch teams mid-season because you just noticed how nice Blake Griffin is on the Clippers. Stop it!!
5. You are rooting for three, four, five teams with absolutely no personal connections or ties with any of the teams…and you seem to be die-hard for every one of those teams.
Again, no one should be die-hard for one team and root for another. It’s just straight felonious to be die-hard for more than one team. These are the worst kinds of fans because they pick a million teams and cheer the hardest for whoever makes it at the end. This gives them the chance to say, “soandso was my favorite team anyway. At least they made it.” N-O. Find a seat some where, every point you make is now deemed fraudulent and erroneous.
Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comment section below? Feel like I unjustly labelled you a bandwagon fan? Chances are…you are just in denial. You can still let me know in the comments, too, though.