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The 50 Best Cities for Sports Fans

The stands are always full in these towns, which boast the best stadiums and sports bars in America.

Lately we've started to feel like all the recent "greatest sports cities" lists have placed too much emphasis on the teams, and not enough on, well, us - the guys in the stands. So we set about finding America's best sports city for sports fans. Instead of limiting our search to championship titles and playoff berths, we went all the way, looking at the number of sports bars and sporting goods stores per capita, sports radio stations, stadiums in the vicinity, attendance at games, and even how popular the damn jerseys are. The results are in, and we have a winner.

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GIVE US AN M!

No, it's not Boston, New York, or Chicago that stands out in our rankings. It's Minneapolis, MN. Or maybe just plain Minnesota. Now, before you flip out, or flip us off (hey, we were as surprised as you are), let's get into why. Minneapolis—along with its twin city, St. Paul—has solid MLB, NFL, NBA, and NHL teams, but here's the kicker: It had more than three million in stadium attendance between those four teams last year. That's more pro game attendance per capita than any other city in the United States. In other words, going to the games is pretty much mandatory. Then there are the 353 sporting goods stores, two ESPN radio stations, and 20 sports bars per 100,000 people. "Despite a ton of losing over the years, the fans keep coming back to the games," says Paul Allen, a radio host at Minneapolis sports radio station KFAN FM 100.3. "I've been continually impressed with the passion and loyalty of the fans," adds Timberwolves forward Kevin Love. "There are a lot of sporting options, both professionally and at the amateur level, in the Twin Cities—and Minnesotans support them all. It's a great sports town!"

THE LIST

1 Minneapolis, MN
2 Miami, FL
3 Atlanta, GA
4 Denver, CO
5 Boston, MA
6 Kansas City, MO
7 Cleveland, OH
8 Washington, DC
9 Seattle, WA
10 Milwaukee, WI
11 Dallas, TX
12 Portland, OR
13 Baltimore, MD
14 Oakland, CA
15 Chicago, IL
16 San Francisco, CA
17 Detroit, MI
18 Philadelphia, PA
19 Los Angeles, CA
20 Houston, TX
21 New York, NY
22 Nashville, TN
23 Indianapolis, IN
24 Sacramento, CA
25 Arlington, TX
26 Charlotte, NC
27 San Diego, CA
28 Phoenix, AZ
29 Columbus, OH
30 Oklahoma City, OK
31 Wichita, KS
32 Las Vegas, NV
33 Louisville, KY
34 Omaha, NE
35 Tulsa, OK
36 Jacksonville, FL
37 San Antonio, TX
38 Fresno, CA
39 Memphis, TN
40 Austin, TX
41 Long Beach, CA
42 Mesa, AZ
43 Albuquerque, NM
44 Tucson, AZ
45 Raleigh, NC
46 El Paso, TX
47 San Jose, CA
48 Fort Worth, TX
49 Virginia Beach, VA
50 Colorado Springs, CO

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