Sports: The Rules
I discuss this topic often, much to my dismay. There are rules to being a sports fan. Rules that are often broken. This is more for the hardcore sports fans than the casual watcher.
Rule #1: Don’t Jump Ship
At some point or another, your home team sucks. You never abandon ship and decide some “other” team is now your favorite. You can criticize, even mock, but you still watch all of their games and still support them. In rare occasions, it’s even okay to stop watching their games all together if it’s too hard to stomach, but you never decide they are not your favorite team anymore.
Rule #2: Don’t Pick The Best
We all know somebody like this. They weren’t the biggest sports fan growing up, but somewhere along the lines they decided they wanted in on the conversation. At the time, their home team wasn’t very good, so they picked the perennial championship contender and picked them as their “favorite.” That’s the easy way out when it comes to sports. It’s easy to cheer for the best team and best players and gloat when they win. I don’t consider these fans to be too hardcore, because they couldn’t care less if this random team loses. They are simply looking for an excuse to brag when they win. It also sucks for them, because there is no real satisfaction in winning when a team like this wins because you don’t have any true passion invested in them.
Rule #3: Never Cheer For Rivals
If the regular season has ended and your team hasn’t made the playoffs (or has been eliminated) you NEVER cheer for your team’s rivals. A perfect example of this is Toronto fans cheering for Montreal, or Boston fans cheering for New York. If anything, you root for whoever they are playing against in hopes they will lose.
Rule #4: Players Don’t Dictate Favorite Team
Your favorite player just got traded or signed somewhere else in the off season. Wherever they landed is NOT your new favorite team. Until that player retires, he is now the enemy and so is his new destination. Many players provide years of great play, but once the front of their jersey has another city across it, the love is over until they retire.
Rule #5: Support Your Players
Not every player is Kobe Bryant, Sidney Crosby or Roy Halladay. Support the players you do have and hope they will perform. This is the hardest rule to follow of all of them, and I have broken it many times. Remember – not every guy is going to be great, but they are part of your TEAM. Nobody can win a championship on their own, and somewhere along the lines one of these players will do something important.
Of course, there are exceptions to every rule. In no particular order, I will list some below.
Your original home town team is always your favorite team even if you move. Thus, if you now live elsewhere, you obviously do not support the local team. They can be on your radar, but you never switch sides. In this instance, it is okay to boo the home team.
There wasn’t a local team when you started watching a particular sport so you have chosen a team from elsewhere. Usually you follow family lineage and root for who your parents/whoever rooted for. If this information is unavailable, you have been given one of the two only free passes to pick any team you want.