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GQ calls Lakers fans worst in the NBA

Mar 17, 2011, 2:17 PM EDT


In case you missed it while checking out the Armani ads, GQ (via The Basketball Joneswent looking for the worst fans in sports — congratulations Philadelphia! — and wouldn’t you know it only one NBA team was able to make this storied list:

The Los Angeles Lakers.

Congratulations, Angelenos! You are the fairest of America’s fair-weather fans! The Lakers unfaithful abandoned their team en masse when Magic retired in 1991, then reconfirmed their fickleness by sending local TV ratings plummeting 30 percent after Shaq departed in 2004. Meanwhile, in these championship days, the Staples Center is more bar scene than sports complex, where fans can’t be bothered to clap—their hands are too busy texting. “The focus is sometimes not on the court,” coach Phil Jackson has said. “It’s on the people in the crowd.” Which explains why eight box suites were recently combined into an offshoot of an abominable nightclub, the Hyde Lounge. After VIPs pass a clipboard gauntlet—at a sports stadium—they can eat $21 nachos at a crocodile-skin bar while waiting for the space to transform into a postbuzzer dance club. When it’s time to leave, a valet will even bring around their bandwagon.

GQ’s not wrong. They’re not totally right, either. And they took the easy way out with bashing the stars.

J.A. Adande has used this description before and it’s very apt — Los Angeles is like an iceberg. In People Magazine and on TMZ you see the 10 percent of the iceberg above water, the industry people who want to be seen. They’re dancing penguins on top of an iceberg (hey, that’s a great idea for a movie… oh, wait).

But the 90 percent you don’t see is just like every other city with mechanics and insurance salesmen and Thai restaurant cooks making up the majority of people. Well, L.A. has more Thai restaurant cooks than other cities, but you get the idea.

Lakers games are the same way — you see the texting stars courtside and hear about the Hyde lounge. But up above the luxury boxes in the 300 section are the real Lakers fans. People who do stick with the team when Shaq leaves town, where the Thai chefs who save their money to go to a couple games a year sit. There are plenty of real Lakers fans, you just don’t see them.

Now, many of those real Lakers fans have an unreal sense of entitlement and arrogance about their team, but that’s another issue all together.

  1. savocabol1 - Mar 17, 2011 at 2:26 PM

    If you take into consideration the past I agree with calling the Lakers fans the biggest fairweather fans in the game. I wouldn’t have been suprised if Miami was at the top either considering their games are sold out yet no one ever goes to them.

  2. adeedothatswho - Mar 17, 2011 at 3:28 PM

    There are many fair weather Lakers fans, it’s true. Every franchise has them, we just have more. But make no mistake about it; The Lakers own Los Angeles. Even during the rare down years. True Lakers fans are as hardcore and dedicated as any fans in sports. I spent my entire paycheck to go to games four and five of the 2008 Finals. If, after game five, I still loved them, nothing else could ever change that.

    That being said, I thank God I was born in 1982. I don’t think I could have dealt with the 60’s Lakers losing to the Celtics over and over.

  3. dolphinatic - Mar 17, 2011 at 3:37 PM

    It sure seems like a big fall when your so high up (as the lakers were and are) Doesn’t it. It happens to every team when they fall from grace with the retirement of a legend or a rebuilding trade. Go LAKE SHOW!
    P.S. If you get you BBall news from GQ, then you might want to get your BBalls checked to see if they are still there.

    • mickdamill - Mar 17, 2011 at 4:40 PM

      You will be on the bandwagon until it crashes again when kobe retires.

      • dolphinatic - Mar 17, 2011 at 9:38 PM

        Born in Miami raised in LA,. Fan since 1980 (6yrs old)

  4. taipan70 - Mar 17, 2011 at 5:38 PM

    LOL…Shame on you Helin for giving that scrub Adam Wiener from GQ a plug. First of all there are many false assumptions in that article Wiener wrote. You cant take a sample of fans that are being televised ad aggregate as a whole. There are many fans that are dedicated to the team and watch the games at the venue or at home. It doesnt matter if they are in a rebuilding process or not we like the product. The Lakers are synonymous with NBA championships and competitive basketball. We have one of the best owners in any sport focused on achieving this task every year. “..anything less is a failure” verbatim from Dr. Buss.

    Secondly, the venue resources, i.e the clubs, bars, restaurants, day care, etc, enhances the spectacle of a sports event. Thus the reason why in the last 8 years the NBA all-stars have been at the Staples Center twice.

    Clearly Wiener is upset having to shell his hard earned money to sit in a dilapidated seat watching a subpar team in a smelly venue. I read this article laughing and at amazement of why you gave this jealous infant publicity.

    • pdbro - Mar 18, 2011 at 8:43 AM

      Way to hold true to form, jaded Lakers fan. I really enjoy the justifications you used to defend your fanbase. You know, because your owner and venue are clearly the subject at hand. Spit out some more misguided vitriol. It’s cute, and not unexpected.

      Frankly, I give the nod to Miami fans here. Dallas is pretty bad, too. We call our lower bowl “fans” the cocaine and boob job crowd. They can’t be bothered to ever show up on time.

      • taipan70 - Mar 18, 2011 at 1:38 PM

        Sorry Pd, I tried to keep it short with the reasons so your simple mind can comprehend. But I can understand your caustic answers in an effort to display juvenile wit. Attending a game once or twice in a season, sitting from the nosebleed sections can give one a false perception of the game let alone fan attendance.

        Furthermore, your deep envy of the Lakers and jealousy of fans sitting in the lower level may have become viscerally nauseating rendering you incapable of enjoying the event.

        I suggest changing your moniker to a name befitting your personality, perhaps negative nancy or bitter bob.

  5. icu84bs - Mar 17, 2011 at 5:48 PM

    I am a long way from L.A. (British Columbia, Canada) but I have been a Laker’s fan since 1972. I would not consider that a fair weather fan. Cheers.

  6. rapmusicmademedoit - Mar 17, 2011 at 6:26 PM

    as long as Kobe is ” winning” those golden balls, who cares…………..

    brooklyn laker fan………………. I’m also a Knick fan, there is no law against it

  7. rapmusicmademedoit - Mar 17, 2011 at 6:30 PM

    by the way. when I saw Snoop I thought they was talking about gangsta type worst.

    fo shizzle

  8. Chris Carter - Mar 17, 2011 at 7:06 PM

    I became a Lakers fan in 1996, when I was eight years old, because I was a huge Shaq fan.

    I had no prior favorite before that, and I stuck with them every year. Kobe and [eventually] Phil Jackson ended up being icing on the cake. When Phil and Kobe are both gone, I will always like the Lakers. I’ve visited LA a few times, in part because I wanted to see the Staples Center, and I can’t see myself not liking them, ever.

    Just like any sports team, there’s a lot of fans out there like that – people shouldn’t get shoehorned into a bandwagon because their popular.

    If I had to pick any bandwagon team right now, I’d say it’s the Bulls. I loved ’em because of the Jackson/Jordan era, but all of a sudden these “new” Bulls fans are coming out the wordwork this year because they aren’t a lottery team :p

  9. gridirongoon24 - Mar 17, 2011 at 7:18 PM

    What most of these idiots don’t take into consideration, is that half the people at the Lakers games, are not actually from L.A! The worst fans in the NBA are CLEARLY in Miami. If you don’t know that, you obviously dont watch basketball

  10. j0esixpack - Mar 17, 2011 at 8:37 PM

    I’m no Laker fan… Far from it, but does anyone really care what GQ thinks about sports?

    • fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 18, 2011 at 3:04 AM

      GQ should focus instead on LeBron’s and D-Wade’s scarves and belts. Bosh thinks they’re cool.

      It’s funny how Wiener collectively judges us Lakers fans just because of who is seen on the telly during games. Hasn’t it occurred to Weenier that we got more watching at home, sports bars, etc, both in continental America and outside of it?

      Fan since the 80’s. Still rooted when things were dismal in the mid-90’s and still believed when Shaq left the building.

    • bobthis - Mar 18, 2011 at 9:29 AM


  11. 1historian - Mar 18, 2011 at 7:26 AM

    Part of the fun of being a fan of a consistently good team is the simple that you get to be arrogant, and part of THAT fun is that the fans of other teams – like me – hate you for being arrogant. And part of

  12. 1historian - Mar 18, 2011 at 7:27 AM

    Part of the fun of being a fan of a consistently good team is the simple fact that you get to be arrogant, and part of THAT fun is that the fans of other teams – like me – hate you for being arrogant.

    Isn’t that fun?

  13. 1historian - Mar 18, 2011 at 7:30 AM

    “Duplicate remark detected” or some such idiotic excuse is the reason why my perceptive, wry and witty remark came to the screen before it was supposed to.

    One of my favorite t-shirts says “I hate L.A.” and I have had it for 28 years.

  14. omniusprime - Mar 18, 2011 at 9:22 AM

    GQ is a worthless magazine with a dying fan base so it has to spark some controvery to try to sell some copies. Only fools read that piece of elitist trash! Sorry GQ but every team in every sport has fair weather fans who abandon their team when the going gets tough. Laker fans are the best fans in the world and we have the star power every other team lacks so they’re all jealous. Besides us Laker fans have rooted our team to more championship series than any other team and now we’re only 1 ring behind the Celtics. We Laker fans will be laughing at GQ and the rest of the league when the world’s greatest basketball player, Kobe Bryant, leads our Repeat World Champion Lakers to a Threepeat this June!

  15. bobthis - Mar 18, 2011 at 9:31 AM

    GQ was done 40 years ago. What a desperate attempt to sell a dead mag.

  16. fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 18, 2011 at 10:42 AM

    Once I save up enough money to move from my parents’ basement, I will be glad to go to games and be part of proud Laker’s fans. Ha ha!!!!

    • fouldwimmerlaik - Mar 18, 2011 at 11:29 AM

      ^ Get lost riffraff. Go back to the sandlot where you belong.


  17. 1historian - Mar 23, 2011 at 9:05 PM

    Lakers’ fans are arrogant.

    Ya think?

    Here’s a clue – when your team is good year after year that’s one of the bennies of being a fan – you get to be arrogant.

    Currently – Celtics’ fans, Patriots’ fans, Yankees’ fans, Steelers’ fans – ALL the teams that are good or in the hunt year after year have arrogant fans.

    When they’re not so good? Who cares? The press runs off to the fans whose team is hot that year and we just hold our tongue until we have reason to be arrogant again and ding-dong writers like this one come to reveal – once again – how arrogant we are.

    I hate the Lakers – I’m a Celtics fan. When I see them on TV and the camera manages to find Jack Nicholson and other flora and fauna I go to the toilet, get a drink, or do something to avoid having to watch them and then I’m back.


  18. 1historian - Mar 23, 2011 at 9:07 PM

    If the Celtics beat the Lakers this year in the finals and Shaq plays a part in that I w8ill be one happy soul.

    But I won’t go to the victory parade, I might get a shirt or hat or both, but life will go on whoever wins.

    • rapmusicmademedoit - Mar 24, 2011 at 7:59 PM

      well, you won’t have to worry because the Celtic will not beat LA, MAMBA WILL BE BEATING SOMEBODY, REAL, REAL BAD.

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