Being a basketball fan for most of my life and being on the internet almost all the time has provided me with a lot of information about how people think or react to the game.
And one thing I noticed about the Playoffs and the Finals this year is that there have been many discussions on the internet about “bandwagon” fans that people love to hate.
However, for me, the term “bandwagon” is too general because I think there are a lot of interpretations on the meaning based on what I’ve observed.
Bandwagon #1: This fan ain’t loyal.
These are the people who support only the good teams which means that they would often switch sides when needed so that they will always feel like winners.
example: 2008–2010 Lakers fan to 2010–2014 Heat fan to 2014–2016 Warriors fan
Don’t be like them. No one likes a disloyal person.
Bandwagon #2: I wish that I could be like the cool kids.
These are the people who don’t usually follow the NBA season but suddenly follow the Playoffs, especially the Finals even if they barely know anything about the game because everyone is talking about it. These are the people that would tweet or share the stats/videos of the game just to show that they aren’t out of the loop and they know what everyone else is talking about when in reality, they don’t. You don’t have to pretend to like or know something just because it’s trending.
Being a basketball fan doesn’t automatically make you cool and not being a fan doesn’t automatically make you uncool. Being a basketball fan just means loving the game of basketball.
Don’t be like them. No one likes a pretentious person.
Bandwagon #3: The new kids on the block
These are the people who are suddenly hooked by the popularity of the NBA, more often than not they would align themselves with a great team. They are the new fans. They are only knowledgeable of current events. This type of “bandwagon” fan is the most acceptable since most, if not all basketball fans start out like this.
There’s nothing wrong with being one of them if you genuinely want to know about the game.
The reason why this idea of having “bandwagons”, mainly the first and the second kind, is concerning is because just like in every other setting, anyone who is a true fan of one subject/sport who is dedicated, knowledgeable and passionate about what he’s learning about feels some sort of disrespect when people that do not know as much as them pretend that they do.
To end this, I just want to say that if you truly want to love something, you’d want to do your best to learn about that thing. It’s the same thing with being a basketball fan.