This advice has been around since the dawn of Twitter. Failing that, don’t mock the Sacramento Kings, who have a very online fanbase ready to jump to their city’s defense.
The feud began on Monday, possibly when Kings fan Tim Maxwell mocked Detroit while praising Sacramento rookie Keegan Murray for winning the Summer League MVP. Detroit fans have rallied to defend their oft-derided city.
Detroit Pistons beat writer James Edwards III threw caution to the wind Monday, tweeting that “every NBA writer in the country will tell you downtown Sacramento is the second worst city on the NBA Tour. It’s horrible.
At the request of a Kings fan, Sacramento TV announcer Mark Jones jumped into the fray.
“Homeboy is hanging out with the wrong people,” he tweeted. “I have covered the NBA for 32 years at the NATIONAL level. I’ve been to every city in the NBA many times. I have NEVER heard Sacramento described that way. I have always had a great time at SAC as a visitor.
After that exchange, Detroit supporters began lambasting Sacramento with the usual mockery, comparing it to a cow pasture and mocking the airport’s location far from the city.
Predictably, the conversation turned to which cities in the NBA deserve to be called the worst. Here’s a look at some of the nominees for Worst City in the NBA, with pros and cons for each.
Pros: The Toyota Center is one of the most beautiful arenas in the NBA, with gigantic screens giving fans instant replays from all angles of the arena. Much of the NBA season takes place in the winter, which makes a visit to Houston relatively warm, to say the least.
Negatives: Downtown Houston is worn down, with curly sidewalks and weed-filled empty parking lots located a block from the stadium. The only restaurant immediately bordering the arena is inside a hotel, as parking lots mostly surround the arena.
Pros: Salt Lake is nestled right next to the Wasatch Front Mountains. From downtown, you can hike to City Creek Canyon and get away from it all without ever leaving the city borders.
Negatives: There’s a reason NBA players flatly refused to trade with the Utah Jazz. The arena is next to a struggling outdoor mall, and Salt Lake isn’t exactly known for its wild nightlife (although the nearby Beerhive Pub has an ice cream rail built into the bar, which which is pretty cool, pun intended).
Pros: You don’t have to exit to enter the arena. The city has skywalks that connect buildings to buildings and parking ramps to the arena. There are many clubs and bars, including First Avenue, the legendary downtown music venue that hosts the world’s biggest bands.
Negatives: The weather is so bad they had to build overhead walkways to connect everything.
Pros: At least the weather is nice in January. And downtown, as it is, has Lake Eola Park, which is a nice little urban oasis with a few food and drink options.
Negatives: The Amway Center is bordered primarily by interstate highways. There is very little around the arena for nightlife.
Pros: The weather is nice, compared to almost every other city in the NBA, during the season. Bars and restaurants abound nearby, including Fizz, the city’s only champagne bar.
Cons: None to speak of.
Pros: Little Ceaser’s Arena is very close to Comerica Park and Ford Field, as the city has made sports arenas the centerpiece of downtown. And there’s an MGM Grand casino around the corner.
Negatives: too many to count.
Pros: The weather is pretty nice by NBA standards, and a nifty canal runs through downtown nearby, with food options and a water taxi to boot.
Cons: It’s a small town and the BBQ isn’t as good as Texas BBQ. Someone had to say it.
Pros: This might be a surprising entrance, but downtown Charlotte is primarily a banking hub. There is a good barbecue and a bustling outdoor Christmas market, if you are visiting close to the holidays.
Negatives: They’re mostly riding the sidewalks after 5 p.m. as bank workers head out into the suburbs. There are pockets of activity but Charlotte isn’t having a wild good time.
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