The impact on fans of teams who are leaving cities where the people have learned to love them can be so negatively great. However, the problem here lies in the local government as well as in the organizers.
One reaction of a fan of a team that lost the game and is moving is to make their sentiments known. According to National Public Radio, the loss of a sports team can indeed be “devastating” not just for the fans but for the entire city. For example, what resulted when the NFL team, the Cleveland Browns lost to the Vikings, was devastating to many fans. One of the suggestions of a fan of a lost team who is leaving the city is for the fans to “make the noise that…we’re here in St. Louis, and we’re ready to support a team” (“When Your Team Moves”). In this case, this fan may be talking about voicing out their sentiments on social media and in any way possible like the Internet.
Another impact of loss or a moving team on fans is the temporary loss of identity for the fans. This is because “fans who align themselves with the local team often have a higher level of social well-being” (Wilkens). This is because these fans actually identify with their favorite team and, unfortunately, use their connection with the team as the basis for their happiness. Thus, their personal relationships and even work performance may suffer in case the team loses (Wilkens).
Still, another reaction of fans towards a team that is losing is the feeling that their sentiments are not being recognized. For example, when the St. Louis fans of the Chargers saw the loss of their favorite NFL team, some felt that “their longtime loyalty is discounted” (Steinberg). Thus, one thing that leagues and teams should remember even if they lose is not to literally abandons cities and fans. In fact, according to Steinberg, “If teams and Leagues expect long-term fan loyalty, they cannot abandon cities” because the main reason is that “loyal fans…have been part of the reason that NFL dominates American culture” and these fans should not be dishonored (Steinberg).
All these reactions point out to the fact that fans become so attached to their favorite teams. Thus, local governments and organizers should try to find a way where teams and Leagues did not have to leave. Otherwise, at least the organizers should do something so that teams did not have to leave a sour feeling to fans if they have to leave the cities that have learned to love them.
- Steinberg, Leigh. “LA NFL Moves Totally Disregard Current Fan Loyalty.” Forbes.com, 31 Aug. 2015
- When Your Team Moves, What’s A Fan to Do?” National Public Radio, 16 Jan. 2016,
- Wilkens, John. “Life after move for Chargers fans?” San Diego Union Tribune, 29 Aug. 2015