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When is it OK to change the team you root for?

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  1. 1. What is "right" according to the "rules" of sport Fandom under the circumsatnces described here?

    • Stick with the Amazing Mets?
      29
    • GO with the local flavor if you know that is where you are spending the rest of your life?
      44

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MODS- PLEASE change to Free for All, wrong forum

DangerMonkey's thread reminds me of a debate I have been having with a friend for several years. We went to college together in the early 90s and moved down to DC for grad school for the latter part of the decade. I'm from NY originallly and moved back to NY nearly 10 years ago, always rooted for NY teams even when living in DC. However, here is my friend's baseball fan odessy:

He was a teen in the 80s and grew up in NE PA, was growing up during the Doc and Darryl years for the Mets and rooted for them until the late 90s.

When it became clearer that DC was his long term plan, and as the Mets, were, well, the Mets, they became a faded memory for him, he dropped his fandom of the mets, and about 10 years ago, "became" an Orioles fan, buying a partial season ticket package.

However, in 2005 the Nats moved to town, and he immediately became a fan, and a part-season ticket holder, something I have given him merciless grief for ever since for his lack of sports loyalty, whereas he has defended his position by sayong that if you know that somewhere is going to be your "final" destination, you can legitimately change rooting interest.

Clearly, based on the teams he has rooted for he is not a front-runner, but is it deemed "OK" to change teams because you have moved and the local team is getting more coverage, or do you stick with what you grew up with?

(As an aside, he grew up as an Eagle fan and would consider it blasphemy to root for the 'Skins)

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I am a hometown guy. Period.

Dolphins est 1975 (5 years old was my first Dolphins game with my Dad).

Marlins est 1993

Heat est 1988

Panthers est 1993 (I believe)

Miami Hurricanes (went to school at FAU...they don't count sorry)

To the grave.

Now before we had MLB, NBA and NHL down here I was a

Yankee

Laker

Islander

I still root for the Yankees (except when they playthe Marlins), I became an instant Laker hater as soon as the Heat started playing and same for the Islanders.

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IMO you get one change per lifetime, and that usually takes place if you move. Your friend is stuck with Baltimore, sorry.

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If you were ever a Real Sports fan who lived and breathed for your team got ulcers when they lost and felt the emotional joy when they won, there is no such thing as changing teams, not even an option.

If you're a bandwagoner semi-fan, then do whatever you want.

I bleed the color of my teams and that can never change.

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You shouldn't do it, period.

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According to Bill Simmons:

"Once you choose a team, you're stuck with that team for the rest of your life ... unless one of the following conditions applies:

Your team moves to another city.

You grew up in a city that didn't field a team for a specific sport - so you picked a random team - and then either a.) your city landed a team, or b.) you moved to a city that fielded a team for that specific sport.

One of your immediate family members either plays professionally or takes a relevant management/coaching/front office position with a pro team.

You follow your favorite college star (and this has to be a once-in-a-generation favorite college star) to the pros and root for his team du jour. Only works if there isn't a pro team in your area.

The owner of your favorite team treated his fans so egregiously over the years that you couldn't take it anymore -- you would rather not follow them at all then support a franchise with this owner in charge."

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According to Bill Simmons: "Once you choose a team, you're stuck with that team for the rest of your life ... unless one of the following conditions applies:Your team moves to another city.You grew up in a city that didn't field a team for a specific sport - so you picked a random team - and then either a.) your city landed a team, or b.) you moved to a city that fielded a team for that specific sport.One of your immediate family members either plays professionally or takes a relevant management/coaching/front office position with a pro team.You follow your favorite college star (and this has to be a once-in-a-generation favorite college star) to the pros and root for his team du jour. Only works if there isn't a pro team in your area.The owner of your favorite team treated his fans so egregiously over the years that you couldn't take it anymore -- you would rather not follow them at all then support a franchise with this owner in charge."

This all seems reasonable

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Never. The terms for people who do this is "traitor" and "wives".

So, as a Seattle resident, I should be an OKC Thunder fan?Right.

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I could never jump ship on one of my teams, ever. I don't care how good or bad they are, as others have said, if you have a team, they are your team until the day you die. I just can't find it in myself to cheer for a team and then change my mind and still have the same kind of emotional attachment to it. In the NHL, I'm a Vancouver Canucks fan for life and in the NFL I've been a Dolphins fan since I was probably about 8 or 9 years old because I loved Dan Marino. However, due to my proximity to Seattle, I've always had a soft spot for the Seahawks too and have always cheered for them and followed them...except when they play the Dolphins. I've been to a few games in Seattle wearing Miami colors.

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Seeing as most people pick their teams in childhood, I don't think it's unreasonable to allow one change. How many people still like all the same bands they did when they were 8?

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I root for home team laundry. Hell, I went to the UW because I'd been a fan of the sports teams as long as I could remember. I will always root for Seattle teams, regardless of where in the world I am. If I move somewhere else, I may develop an affinity for the local teams, but I will never, ever consider myself a real fan of theirs. There can be only one.

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Simmons is pretty much on target, I think. So your friend is okay. He took the Orioles because DC didnt have a team but then switched to the hometown team when they got one. I think that's fine. And anyone who wants to root for the Nats is A-OK in my book. Why would anyone put themselves through that?

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Steelers - Penguins - Pirates are locks

Basketball started with Bulls because of Jordan then went to the Spurs because of Duncan / will be Miami or wherever Wade is whenever Duncan hangs them up

So no home team for a sport move around as you see fit / otherwise stick wit em even if they have 500 years without a winning record

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It really depends on how much of a fan you are of the sport and the team to begin with. For football it'll always be the NY Giants for me. Same with NY Yankees in baseball. In all the other sports since I'm not as much of a big fan it's totally up in the air and I usually end up being a fan of individual players rather than teams. For example I rooted for the Penguins when Mario Lemieux was with them now I can really care less about hockey. Lived in NE PA my entire life btw.

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Simmons is pretty much on target, I think. So your friend is okay. He took the Orioles because DC didnt have a team but then switched to the hometown team when they got one. I think that's fine. And anyone who wants to root for the Nats is A-OK in my book. Why would anyone put themselves through that?

Both teams are so terrible and hopeless he should get to root for both of them.

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I'm somewhat similar to your friend. Grew up in northern NJ as a Yankees fan; moved to the DC area in the 90s for college, and have been in DC/VA ever since. Around the start of the 2000s, I started losing interest in the Yanks and baseball, and the Nats moved into town shortly thereafter. I went to some games at RFK their first season, and started finding myself enjoying a meaningless regular season Nats win more than when the Yanks clinched a pennant. And, not to get too sappy, but my biggest remaining connection to the Yanks was my dad, and, once he passed away, I lost any family connection to the Yankees too. I don't know if there was a moment when I decided "I'm fully a Nats fan", but I couldn't have cared less when the Yankees won the World Series in 2009 (and, to any extent that I was hoping the Yankees would win, it was only because they were facing Philly).

Anyway, just a long way of saying that I think it is okay to change teams that you are rooting for, for any number of reasons. I'd only make fun of someone if they were bandwagoning onto a team.

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I'm somewhat similar to your friend. Grew up in northern NJ as a Yankees fan; moved to the DC area in the 90s for college, and have been in DC/VA ever since. Around the start of the 2000s, I started losing interest in the Yanks and baseball, and the Nats moved into town shortly thereafter. I went to some games at RFK their first season, and started finding myself enjoying a meaningless regular season Nats win more than when the Yanks clinched a pennant. And, not to get too sappy, but my biggest remaining connection to the Yanks was my dad, and, once he passed away, I lost any family connection to the Yankees too. I don't know if there was a moment when I decided "I'm fully a Nats fan", but I couldn't have cared less when the Yankees won the World Series in 2009 (and, to any extent that I was hoping the Yankees would win, it was only because they were facing Philly).

Anyway, just a long way of saying that I think it is okay to change teams that you are rooting for, for any number of reasons. I'd only make fun of someone if they were bandwagoning onto a team.

That's a really interesting point. I don't believe my friend's father is into sports at all so he doesn't have that going for him. My father on the other hand is obsessed.

What's interesting is that my father and I talk give or take an hour a week on the phone or in person, 75% of which relates to the Yanks/knicks/Giants. If that were not to be such a big part of my life anymore, I could see not being so married to the teams I grew up with.

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If you were ever a Real Sports fan who lived and breathed for your team got ulcers when they lost and felt the emotional joy when they won, there is no such thing as changing teams, not even an option.If you're a bandwagoner semi-fan, then do whatever you want.I bleed the color of my teams and that can never change.

End of thread. :goodposting:Sox, Pats, Bruins, period.

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I'm somewhat similar to your friend. Grew up in northern NJ as a Yankees fan; moved to the DC area in the 90s for college, and have been in DC/VA ever since. Around the start of the 2000s, I started losing interest in the Yanks and baseball, and the Nats moved into town shortly thereafter. I went to some games at RFK their first season, and started finding myself enjoying a meaningless regular season Nats win more than when the Yanks clinched a pennant. And, not to get too sappy, but my biggest remaining connection to the Yanks was my dad, and, once he passed away, I lost any family connection to the Yankees too. I don't know if there was a moment when I decided "I'm fully a Nats fan", but I couldn't have cared less when the Yankees won the World Series in 2009 (and, to any extent that I was hoping the Yankees would win, it was only because they were facing Philly).

Anyway, just a long way of saying that I think it is okay to change teams that you are rooting for, for any number of reasons. I'd only make fun of someone if they were bandwagoning onto a team.

That's a really interesting point. I don't believe my friend's father is into sports at all so he doesn't have that going for him. My father on the other hand is obsessed.

What's interesting is that my father and I talk give or take an hour a week on the phone or in person, 75% of which relates to the Yanks/knicks/Giants. If that were not to be such a big part of my life anymore, I could see not being so married to the teams I grew up with.

I've been meaning to read Will Leitch's book "Are We Winning," about the relationship between Will, his father, and the St. Louis Cardinals, which I understand gets into some of that type of stuff. Anyway, it's probably not a coincidence that I stopped following the Yankees not long after I lost the only person who I still talked about them with (if he were still around, maybe I'd still be a Yankees fan, I don't know).

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If you were ever a Real Sports fan who lived and breathed for your team got ulcers when they lost and felt the emotional joy when they won, there is no such thing as changing teams, not even an option.If you're a bandwagoner semi-fan, then do whatever you want.I bleed the color of my teams and that can never change.

:lmao:

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If you were ever a Real Sports fan who lived and breathed for your team got ulcers when they lost and felt the emotional joy when they won, there is no such thing as changing teams, not even an option.

While I agree... What happens if your team gets sold and moves to another city? Not that that would ever happen to my team. :lmao: I think that is the only valid reason to switch allegiance.Maybe, if you were a casual fan of the sport and moved somewhere where you got hooked on the sport, then I'd allow you to be a fan of the new home-town team.

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Never. The terms for people who do this is "traitor" and "wives".

So, as a Seattle resident, I should be an OKC Thunder fan?Right.
Can I get a ruling on this, FT?

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If you grew up rooting for the team your father did and it wasn't the hometown team and wanted to switch to your current hometown team or the one where you grew up, or someone you know is on a team, I'd be fine with that.

If your kid became an NFL player do you have to become a fan of that team? I don't have kids so I can't really say. Right now it's hard to imagine becoming a die hard Cowboys fan if that happened, but my friends with kids say, that if your kid makes it to the pros, no question you become a fan of their team. Maybe I'd root for Giants and their team, as long as their career lasted, then it's all Giants.

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According to Bill Simmons: "Once you choose a team, you're stuck with that team for the rest of your life ... unless one of the following conditions applies:Your team moves to another city.You grew up in a city that didn't field a team for a specific sport - so you picked a random team - and then either a.) your city landed a team, or b.) you moved to a city that fielded a team for that specific sport.One of your immediate family members either plays professionally or takes a relevant management/coaching/front office position with a pro team.You follow your favorite college star (and this has to be a once-in-a-generation favorite college star) to the pros and root for his team du jour. Only works if there isn't a pro team in your area.The owner of your favorite team treated his fans so egregiously over the years that you couldn't take it anymore -- you would rather not follow them at all then support a franchise with this owner in charge."

This all seems reasonable
This.

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Change whenever the heck you like.

I am really only a fan of two teams, by my definition of a fan (follow them year in and year out, know more than the average person about them). And I couldn't change my loyalties. But if others do, why not? They shouldn't enjoy a sport in any way they want?

No one likes a front runner. But that's a pretty small group of people we are talking about here. And one of the few groups of people I would probably like less than front runners are people that think they get to make up "rules" for when people can or cannot root for teams. You gotta be kidding me. Bill Simmons can suck it.

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Never. The terms for people who do this is "traitor" and "wives".

So, as a Seattle resident, I should be an OKC Thunder fan?Right.
Can I get a ruling on this, FT?
Sure. You're wrong. :eek::gaveldrop:

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YOU NEVER change teams, ever !! Unless of course you're just a casual fan, then knock yourself out.

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Bears, Bulls, and White Sox til I die. I could care less about hockey, boring sport. Never got on the Blackhawks bandwagon. And I don't see how anyone can like the Cubs unless they just like hanging out at Bar Wrigley and catching a game between drinks.

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Root for whoever you want to, whenever you want to. If someone wants to play tough guy and make fun of you for it, just play along. They don't have much in their life, so let them have their fun.

I'm honestly only a real "fan" of one team - the Stillers. But to be quite honest, it's awfully easy to continue. I live in DC, but I'm sure as heck not going to switch to the Skins, LOL.

I used to be a Laker fan, but that's pretty much just because they had the best/most interesting teams to watch when I was growing up (and there wasn't really a local team). I'm guessing a lot of "fans" start out that way. But now, I just don't watch a lot of basketball (though I still like the sport - just don't make time for it), and I root more for players I like than teams at this point.

I can think of a lot of reasons I might want to switch though. If a team doesn't seem to represent something you like anymore, I don't see any problem with dropping off of the bandwagon. It's a lot easier when you stay in your home town I guess, but when you've moved a lot, what the heck IS the "home team"? Where you were born? Where you grew up? Where you were when you first started watching the sport? Where you are now? Where you were the longest? It just not as cut and dried as many seem to think.

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Sooo... what if I pick a team in the Lingerie Football League because the QB is a hottie, and then she signs a big new contract and with all that money gets fat and starts to look like Rex Ryan? What then? Can I change teams THEN???

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once your to old to get a happy meal you cant change your team, other wise your a bandwagon/fake fan, how ever you want to call it.

and if you in a town with more than one team you only get to pick one. for me its the white sox, and both White Sox and Cub fans dont respect the fans that say they like both teams. its also childish for sox fans who root against the cub and visa verse unless they are playing each other.

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Never. The terms for people who do this is "traitor" and "wives".

So, as a Seattle resident, I should be an OKC Thunder fan?Right.
The day Memphis took the Grizzlies is the day I stopped watching the NBA. Screw 'em. David Stern can go to hell.

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Loyalty to professional sports teams, in most cases seems something between quaint and ridiculous. If you're a Niner fan, what are you a fan of? Candlestick Park? (blech) The owners? (blech) Mike Singletary? (blech) Alex Smith? (blech)

The way coaches and players turn over these days, basically, you're rooting for laundry. Certainly the team doesn't have any loyalty to you; they'll move to Santa Clara or to LA as soon as they get a good enough opportunity.

If the sports team has some distinguishing characteristic that makes it worth rooting for, that's a different thing. The way the Green Bay Packers are connected to the local community makes them a franchise worth rooting for (even if you're not in Green Bay). College sports are connected to an institution which has its own integrity (or not). But most pro sports franchises are nothing more than billionaire owners paying millionaire coaches and athletes. Why should a working stiff care what laundry they wear?

Of course, sport team loyalty isn't really about the sport, it's about the community. People root for a team because the people in their community root for a team. The noise in this thread about how "real" fans don't change teams is tribalism; when you show up in Oakland in silver and black, you've joined the Raiders tribe, and if you later decide that Al Davis is a swindling incompetent boob who you don't want to support, you've rejected the Raiders tribe.

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You're rooting for the team that represents your city. Dont you cheer for the US teams in the Olympics?

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Grew up in St. Louis, family had season tickets to the Cardinals. However, when I was 9 I picked a different team to root for--the Saints--because I felt sorry for them when I saw all of the fans wearing paper bags with "Aints" scrawled on them. I thought that was pretty lame, but still supported them and the Cardinals. When the Cards left, I said screw 'em--but when St. Louis got the Rams, I showed support for my local team as well, and am always thankful for them bringing us the best years of our football lives from 99-03.

So, fan of the Saints for 30 years, fan of the Rams for half that. Which has made living in Washington state hell over the last two weeks. =p

Anyway, root for whomever the hell you like. I don't like people who only become fans during a winning season (like last year's new crop of Saints fans), or people who claim they're fans but cry and complain about their team and root for them to lose (like way too many Seahawks fans on the radio around Week 16). But I don't see why people have to only like one team. I think the only way I'd stop rooting for a team is because of ownership (see: Bill Bidwell), but even that worked out for St. Louis in the end.

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The only non-local team I'm a fan of is the 49ers. I started out as a Giants fan because my dad and brother were fans, but became mesmerized by Montana to Rice and became a Niner fan when I was still young. Not sure when exactly, but I know I wasn't rooting for the Giants by the time they played in SB XXV which means I was a Niner fan by the time I was 7 years old. So I don't fight it when people call me a frontrunner (an easy counter is that the Giants were pretty good when I abandoned them) but to me, since I've stuck with them ever since, it's okay.

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Spinoff: For those that didn't goto college, do you root for one team in all sports? Example, UNC basketball is #1 for me, but for football I am a WVU fan. I still cheer for UNC football, but h2h, it's WVU.

What if you went to a small school that offers only a basketball team? Does that make it okay to find a different college team for football?

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