The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

17 December 2005

Does your team blow?

ESPN and the research firm Markitecture polled fans of the 92 major-league teams in baseball, football and basketball — hockey was given a pass because they didn't have a season last year and all the data would presumably be stale — and then ranked 91 of them (the NBA Charlotte Bobcats get an incomplete because they're so new) from best to worst according to the following criteria:

Bang for the Buck: Revenues directly from fans divided by wins in the past three years

Fan Relations: Ease of access to players, coaches & management

Ownership: Honesty; loyalty to players and city

Affordability: Price of tickets, parking and concessions

Stadium Experience: Friendliness of environment; quality of game-day promotions

Players: Effort on the field; likability off it

Coach/Manager: Strong on-field leadership

Championships: Titles already won or expected — soon

Based on these criteria, the San Antonio Spurs, who finished no worse than sixth in any category and at the top in two, are the nation's premier major-league sports franchise. Another NBA club, the Detroit Pistons, placed second; the top-rated NFL team was the Pittsburgh Steelers (third) and the top-rated MLB team was the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (fifth).

Whither the Hornets? Keeping in mind survey lead time, which means that nothing that has happened in Oklahoma City is a factor, the Bugs are regarded this way:

  • Bang for the Buck: 49th (15th in NBA)
  • Fan Relations: 46th (14th in NBA)
  • Ownership: 76th (25th in NBA)
  • Affordability: 3rd (1st in NBA)
  • Stadium Experience: 47th (11th in NBA)
  • Players: 65th (23rd in NBA)
  • Coach/Manager: 51st (18th in NBA)
  • Championships: 88th (28th in NBA)
  • Overall: 55th (17th in NBA)

One could argue that last year's 18-64 record doesn't augur well for playoff potential, I suppose. Then again, Hornets TV guy Bob Licht says with a straight face that this year's Bees are on track to finish 42-40, which surely would be good enough for a playoff berth, inasmuch as eight out of 15 teams in each division will qualify.

Oh, and the absolute bottom of the sports barrel? The New Orleans Saints, who finished nowhere above 60th in any category and came in dead last in ownership. Tom Benson, call your PR man.

Posted at 5:18 PM to Net Proceeds

To answer the title question - Yes.

Posted by: Lynn S at 8:54 PM on 17 December 2005


Talk about kicking a guy when he's down...

Posted by: Eric at 9:50 PM on 18 December 2005

you insensative bastards, leave the saints alone for a couple years

Posted by: johnw at 6:49 PM on 20 December 2005

Inasmuch as I didn't vote in this survey, I accept no responsibility for its results. And anyway, I have no desire to see the Saints shipped permanently to San Antonio or Los Angeles or wherever.

Posted by: CGHill at 6:54 PM on 20 December 2005