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Study says Phoenix is the cheapest place in the country to be a sports fan

Good. Losing shouldn’t be expensive.

Sacramento Kings v Phoenix Suns Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Are you a sad, Phoenix-area sports fan that just finished suffering through a bad baseball season is know staring down a long, cold winter following the Suns, Cardinals, and Coyotes? Hopefully you can find some solace in the fact that that witnessing all that losing is a bargain compared to other locales that are home to the four major sports.

That’s what one study out of UC Berkeley has found. The people at datascience@Berkeley, the school’s online masters in data science program, recently published “Cheer Smarter: Using Advanced Metrics to Analyze the Cost of Being a Sports Fan,” Among other things, they found:

- The least expensive place to be a pro sports fan? Phoenix, where the average ticket, parking, beer and ‘dog run an average $307.54

- The most fun NHL team on game day? The Dallas Stars, who nearly pack the stadium to capacity and boast an average ticket price of $37.28, and beer price of $4.50. The least fun? The Carolina Hurricanes, who don’t draw the crowds and charge an avg. $61.04 for a seat, and $4.88 for a brew...

- Best deal in baseball? The Pittsburgh Pirates, who win more than pricier teams and cost less than worse teams. The worst deal? The Philadelphia Phillies, who win less than cheaper teams and cost more than better teams.

Over 133 million people attended an MLB, NFL, NBA or NHL game in the most recent seasons, totaling to 5,187 opportunities for fans to watch their favorite team play live-- but in what cities do fans pay a higher cost to cheer on their team? Where are fans getting the most for their money? For those who love an underdog, what’s the ROI on paying to watch a team that’s likely to lose?

Thanks to the datascience@Berkeley program you can get some of those answers. Check out the report here.

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