Like it or not, here in the United States, football is king. Sure, baseball, basketball and hockey have their fair share of fans but when it comes to the sports landscape, both college football and the NFL rules. Sadly when it comes to team fan bars, football is the driving force while the other sports tend to take a backseat.
That’s not to say there are not pockets of enthusiasm for baseball, basketball and hockey that help prop up team bars elsewhere.
Very rarely will you find team bars that are exclusively a baseball, basketball or hockey bar. Soccer in the United States is a different animal in that those pubs and taverns that welcome international soccer fans do exist. The problem is that there are not that many soccer bars based on the fact that soccer is not terribly popular in the United States.
Does this mean baseball, basketball, hockey and soccer fans are out of luck when it comes to finding a team bar? Not at all.
The easiest way is to search on Team Bar Finder for your favorite team. If your search returns no results, there are still ways to find a bar showing your team. Simply search for the team bar of the football equivalent for your team’s city. An example would be if you are a fan of the Boston Red Sox, simply search for the New England Patriots Bars in your area.
The New England Patriots are a popular team and many people have moved away from New England to other parts of the country ensuring there are Patriots bars in every major metropolitan area. The likelihood of a Patriots bar showing the Red Sox, Celtics or Bruins game with other Boston fans inside is greater than any sports bar in that town. We would suggest contacting the bar ahead of time to see if they will be showing the game you are interested in to ensure you do not make an unnecessary trip.
Fans seeking a team bar for a team that does not reside in an NFL city may be a bit more difficult to find. NBA cities like San Antonio, Orlando, Oklahoma City, Sacramento, Salt Lake City and Portland do not have NFL franchises that share the same home area code. Finding a San Antonio Spurs bar in San Diego or an Oklahoma City Thunder bar in Charlotte could prove problematic.
The fact is the smaller the professional sports team’s market combined with the size of the out of town market decreases the chances of there being a dedicated team bar for that team. Larger cities like New York City, Chicago and Los Angeles will typically have team bars for smaller market teams but there are no guarantees.
After football, hockey bars tend to be the more prevalent team bars. Hockey fans are passionate and rarely lose that enthusiasm if they move out of their home market where they first became a fan of the Chicago Blackhawks, Pittsburgh Penguins or Philadelphia Flyers.
Another factor as to why college football and NFL team bars are more prevalent is because of the scarcity of games. College football and NFL games are played on Saturday and Sunday respectively. This gives fans an entire week to plan and prepare for their team’s watch party at a team bar. The NFL has only 16 regular season games which translates to only a handful of games Displaced Fans can watch their team in a team bar with other like-minded fans. College football has even fewer games and the passion and loyalty college alumni exhibit is second to none.
On the flip side, the NBA and NHL plays 82 games in the regular season. Major League Baseball plays 162 games. Many of the NBA, NHL and MLB games are played on weeknights. Weeknight viewing parties are hard to organize and sustain. Even the most die-hard fans will suffer from “fan fatigue” trying to watch every game at the designated team bar.
The major exceptions include post-season games. The added value of potentially winning a championship along with the fact that everyone loves a winner, that is when team bars of non-football teams will be packed even on a Wednesday night. This was never more evident than the 2016 World Series between the Chicago Cubs and the Cleveland Indians.
Web traffic to TeamBarFinder.com immediately following the completion of Game 6 of the 2016 World Series spiked to the highest levels since Team Bar Finder’s creation. Fans were desperately looking for Chicago Cubs Bars and Cleveland Indians Bars in their area and knew Game 7 was the deciding game for all the marbles.
Numerous Cubs Bars and Indians Bars reached out to us and thanked us for including their location in our database. The increased fans and subsequent money they made demonstrated that being a team bar was not only fun but lucrative too. Chicago Cubs fans were celebrating their win with victory toasts and shots while the Cleveland Indians fans were drowning their sorrows after a heartbreaking loss. No matter if the team bars were hosting the winning or losing team’s fans, they all saw increased business that night.
No matter if you are a fan of college or pro football or are a die-hard fan of other sports, more than likely you will be able to find a team bar for your team. It make take making a phone call to the bar first but bar owners are more than willing to turn on your game if it means they will get increased patrons in their location.
As always, if you know of a team bar that is not listed in our database, please alert us to it by using the Submit a Team Bar form.