Top 5 Cities Deserving of an NBA Franchise

Photo Credit: David Conger/Climate Pledge Arena

Top 5 Cities Deserving of an NBA Franchise

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Top 5 Cities Deserving of an NBA Franchise

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The NBA is looking to add two new NBA teams in the near future because of the increased amount of talent being pumped into the NBA. Teams are getting “too good,” and the skill needs to become more spread out across the league. Here’s a look at the best locations for potential new teams. 

  1. Las Vegas, Nevada

With Las Vegas becoming the fastest-growing sports city in the United States, an NBA team would fit great on the Vegas Strip. The Raiders boasted a 94.1% attendance rate at Allegiant Stadium in 2021. The Las Vegas Golden Knights ranked at the top of the NHL with a 104.1% attendance rate. These numbers prove that Las Vegas can be a weekend getaway city and also have loyal and engaged fans worthy of an NBA team. Additionally, March-May is the best time of year for travelers to visit Sin City. This coincides perfectly with the heart of the NBA season. The loyal sports fan base and attractive financial market make Las Vegas a perfect destination for the NBA’s next team. 

  1. Kansas City, Missouri

The Kansas City Chiefs have been one of the best teams in the NFL since Patrick Mahomes became their starter. Arrowhead Stadium is one of the loudest stadiums in sports and the Kansas City fans bring great energy to support their team. Fans in the Kansas City area root for other teams like the Oklahoma City Thunder or Memphis Grizzlies who are the closest in terms of location. An NBA team in Kansas City would bring those fans together to support their local team. Their passion and energy would create one of the most dynamic home court experiences which makes them an attractive spot for the next NBA team. 

  1. Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Another Canadian team is much needed in the NBA since Canada is such a big country. The western provinces of Canada have long been underrepresented in American sports but especially in basketball. If Vancouver is given an NBA team, the franchise not only gains the support of the city. They’d also earn the support of another 3.4 million people across western Canadian cities like Edmonton, Calgary, Winnipeg, etc. Another great reason to move a team to Vancouver is the location and the city’s proximity to many Pacific NBA teams. Vancouver is so far south in Canada that it can be included in the East Coast team’s road trips to the West Coast. The potential for a giant fan base and proximity to other NBA teams make Vancouver the ideal place for Canada’s next NBA team. 

  1. Seattle, Washington

In 2008, the Seattle SuperSonics ownership team picked up and moved the organization to Oklahoma City. In their efforts to get a new arena in 2006, the franchise got out of its $45 million dollar lease with KeyArena because it was not fit to hold an NBA team anymore. KeyArena was renovated in 2018 and renamed Climate Pledge Arena. This $1.15 billion renovation is now well suited for an NBA team. The Seattle Storm from the WNBA play there and have seen lots of fan engagement. According to the 2022 WNBA attendance records, the Storm rank first in fan attendance by a wide margin at over 10,000 filled seats per game. Seattle is itching for another NBA team and fans recognize the city as one of the top locations because of its popularity back in the 90s. Former players of the old SuperSonics and fans alike still clamor today for professional men’s basketball to make its return to the Emerald City. 

Photo by David Conger/ Climate Pledge Arena

  1. Louisville, Kentucky

Louisville, Kentucky is one of the best cities for basketball in America and they deserve an NBA basketball team. The success of Kentucky and Louisville men’s basketball teams proves that the sport is popular enough in the state for an NBA team. Both Kentucky and Louisville have ranked inside the top five in college basketball fan attendance every year in the last decade. They are located in a great spot in the Middle East of the United States. The Louisville metro area has a population of 1.4 million people, which would slot them in at 20th in NBA city population. Home of the Kentucky Derby and the Louisville Slugger baseball bats, the city of Louisville has lots of sports history. The population, history, and culture of the city are great reasons to make Louisville, Kentucky, an NBA city.

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