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Wizards fans are among the cheapest in the NBA with merchandise and concessions, according to survey

The Wizards rank among the Top 10 fanbases that spend the least amount of money on food, drink and team merchandise.

2021 Play-In Tournament - Indiana Pacers v Washington Wizards
Wizards fans live in a rich market but aren’t quick to open their wallets during a game.
Photo by Stephen Gosling/NBAE via Getty Images

Washington Wizards fans are a hard group to turn out en masse. We don’t go to preseason games that often and we often don’t sell out most regular season games. Kyle Kuzma even noticed how quiet a preseason game can often seem during postgame media availability last night.

Apparently, when Wizards fans go to Capital One Arena, they also remain very frugal.

According to Josh Koebert of FinanceBuzz, a recent survey of 891 NBA fans, including at least 20 from each team’s fanbase, Wizards fans are among the frugal in nearly every category.

Here is where Wizards fans ranked:

  • 6th among team fanbases who spend the least amount of money on team merchandise per year ($95 for Washington vs. $155.57 for the league average)
  • 4th among team fanbases who spend the least amount of money on non-alcoholic concessions ($35.94 vs. $68.17 for the league average)
  • 10th among team fanbases who spend the least amount of money on alcoholic beverages ($18.13 vs. $22.65 for the league average)

Why could this be?

It’s difficult to pinpoint any one reason why fans are less likely to spend a lot of money on food, drinks or team jerseys. But here are some possible anecdotes:

  • The Wizards uniforms haven’t changed much in recent years and Bradley Beal has remained on the roster for nearly 10 years — If you’re a Wizards fan and have a Beal jersey from 2015, it looks almost the same as the current jersey he’s wearing. The only difference is that teams have Nike logos or Jordan Brand ones on the shoulder. On top of that, the Wizards haven’t acquired many other superstars in the last decade for an extended length of time.
  • Alcoholic drinks aren’t a good value — I’m not spending $10 for one can of Bud Light.
  • Food options are often very generic, and/or not a good value. There are many good restaurants near Capital One Arena — Arena food is expensive! And there are many dining options just a block or two from Cap One for someone to have a pre or postgame meal.
  • The people who may spend more money on food and drink often have all-inclusive tickets — If you sit near the court or in a club level area, your tickets often include food and drink, so there’s no need to buy a bunch of nachos with a tub of half-melted cheesy dip at the regular concession stand, among other things.

I’ll admit that with the exception of team merchandise, I’m quite frugal with concessions stands when I’m at Capital One Arena. Are you the same way? Let us know in the comments below.