The Happy Recap: Among Fans, Not Media, is Where Enthusiasm Matters

We received a comment on the enthusiasm gap post we made today, from a guy named Gary:

 

The Devils have been very successful over the past 15 years (to a much greater degree than the Nets have been) but the New York media doesn’t give them as much coverage as the Rangers – so I think that helps build the rivalry. The Devils have to fight for more coverage, while the Rangers have extensive media coverage by default. The same thing happens to the Nets, but for the Devils it seems a bit more pathetic (because of the lack of acknowledgment of their 3 cups in the past 15 years)

If the Nets had as much success as the Devils, the Knicks/Nets rivalry would be much more intense. I’m not a big basketball fan, and the Rangers/Devils rivalry is much more storied – but I think a lot of the passion is due to the less popular team having playoff success. And the Rangers organization was struggling, but they always held the upper hand on the ice over the Devils.

I’m a Ranger fan, and have a bunch of friends that are Devil fans, and we all agree that even though the Devils won 3 cups – no one seems to care in the media.

 

While Gary’s point has some truth to it, I don’t think “The Enthusiasm Gap” was ever about the media’s coverage of the two sports.  Obviously, there is an enthusiasm gap between hockey and hoops – among our nation’s sports editors.  But this a purely fan-base based argument.  When it comes to fans, the Devils have more loyal ones.  Obviously, that comes from winning for so many years, which also breeds apathy.  But the new arena has made the Devils fans a lot more passionate about their team, while the Nets fans remain dormant in the old barn.

What We Did Today (AKA Gratuitous Self-Linkage):

That’s it for today.  Enjoy Colorado-Detroit with Forslund, Olczyk and Harwood on VERSUS.  Keep reading Puck the Media.  I thank you very much for it.

3 Responses to The Happy Recap: Among Fans, Not Media, is Where Enthusiasm Matters

  1. Gary says:

    Hah – a whole post regarding my comment – I do agree- the Devils definitely have more passionate fans than the Nets. I understand that hockey fans in this area are leaps and bounds more enthused with a Rangers vs Devils game than basketball fans are with a Knicks vs Nets game – but if the Nets and Knicks find more success during the same time periods, maybe their rivalry can rival the Devils vs Rangers.

    I only mentioned the media because I think it helps propell some rivalries (the dead Colorado vs Detroit rivalry) while ignoring others (Toronto vs Atlanta – so many brawls/PIMs over the past couple years – but no one seems to give a shit)

    Then again, I’ve always felt that hockey fans are much more hardcore passionate than basketball fans (although that can be debated in spots like LA) – but if the Nets end up in Brooklyn (I doubt it though), than maybe their rivalry can finally be something that can hold a candle to the Devs vs Rangers.

  2. stevelepore says:

    Yeah Gary, I really have huge doubts about the Barclays Center ever getting built. I don’t know that Brooklyn would do it for the Nets/Knicks either. Unless the Nets land LeBron, who’s going to follow them?

  3. Gary says:

    If the Nets end up in Brooklyn it could be a very big deal. I don’t think it’ll happen though. Most basketball fans here in New York hate the Knicks and Dolan. It’s justified too, since the Knicks have been terrible for so long, yet their ticket prices keep going up. So a Brooklyn team would steal many fans away from the Knicks (including me).

    That being said, I don’t think it’s going to happen, so yeah… that was a waste of a paragraph.

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