It’s safe to say that there’s nothing like attending a live sporting event. I’m not saying the experience is always worth the high price of tickets, plus parking, plus concessions. But there’s no denying that seeing a game in person is distinct from watching on TV at home.
Of course, that unique experience isn’t always a positive one. While most people who attend major sporting events have a good time, there are plenty of nightmare stories out there.
Let’s take a look at the stories of people who had a less than ideal experience when they decided to attend a live sporting event.
Revenge Tastes So Sweet
As a Giants fan who lives in Los Angeles, I’ve probably attended 10 Giants vs Dodgers games. I feel like there is always some kind of incident that makes me uncomfortable if I wear any Giants gear. Usually, it’s just someone shouldering me a bit too hard (intentionally).
The worst I’ve encountered was when I went to the game with my 60-year-old dad who had recently had knee surgery and was struggling to get down the stairs. Some rude Dodger fan told him “I hope you fall down and hurt yourself.”
But what this guy didn’t know is that my dad is a Veteran who doesn’t take crap from anybody. Let’s just say my dad’s walking cane may or may not have come into contact with this guy’s “private parts”. Bottom line, be careful who you trash talk when you’re at a game.
She’s Not My Wife, I Swear!
I was at Giants stadium in Week 9 of 2017, when the Rams absolutely destroyed the Giants 51-17. It was so miserable that we left at halftime. I had on multiple pairs of socks and I still couldn’t feel my feet. Since people were dressed in layers, it was absolutely packed. A ton of people had to stand at an angle so we could fit in the stands.
The kicker was some loud lady who probably had a little too much to drink kept standing up and turning around in the middle of plays and yelling at people for not cheering. Her poor husband was so embarrassed, I overheard him telling some fans in our section, “I have no idea who this crazy lady is, but I sure feel bad for the fool who married this nut job.”
He Poured His Beer on My Seat
I attended the 2004 Green Bay Packers vs New York Giants at Lambeau Field. I had an old crotchety man sit directly behind me. This guy would have a temper tantrum every time people would stand up when something big happened in the game. He was determined to have 1,000-plus people in a section sit down.
Every time something would happen, people in front of me would stand up. So guess what I did? I stood up too. He would literally scream at me to sit down and pour his beer on my seat. Everybody should know that if you attend a football game that you should expect people to stand up periodically.
Wait, Why Are You Yelling At Me?!
At my first-ever NBA game, which was during the 2013-14 season between Oklahoma City and Toronto, my father and I had great seats. The Raptors were getting smoked by Durant, but I was getting to see my heroes in action, and it was pretty cool.
However, about halfway through the 2nd quarter, Amir Johnson put Serge Ibaka on a nasty, big-boy poster. Ibaka was upset at himself and me for some reason. He walked over to the scorer’s table and I was sitting about five feet away from him. He looked me dead in the eyes, slammed his fist on the scorer’s table and yelled a certain four-letter curse word in my direction.
I’m still recovering. I’ve never been more scared.
When it Rains, it Pours
I went to a Patriots game when they were playing the Jets on Thursday night, Week 2 of the 2013 season. The Patriots won 13-10, but the game was a complete snooze fest due to heavy rain. The icing on the cake was that the guy behind me was wasted and threw up on me.
Luckily, I had a poncho on, so I was able to discard it. But now I had no poncho in heavy rain, so I had to go back and stand and watch that bore of a game. Once I got home, I realized that I had lost my wallet. At 3 AM, I was calling my credit card companies to cancel and replace. Then I had to get up at 6 AM for work. Overall, it was a sucky experience.
Kids, don’t do Thursday night football.
In the Doghouse With My Wife
I can’t remember exactly which Buffalo Bills game I was at, but I had too much to drink beforehand and wasn’t allowed into the game at Ralph Wilson Stadium. I stumbled back to the tailgate and watched the game on a tiny black and white TV with my father-in-law. I would love to say that I like my father-in-law, but I’d be lying — he’s a miserable guy.
I don’t remember if the Bills won, but I do remember it being one of the coldest days of the year. So naturally, I thought it was a great idea to sell my winter coat to another fan in the parking lot, so I could recoup the cost of my ticket.
To make matters worse, my wife was the one who had bought me the coat, so when she came out of the stadium and found out what I did… let’s just say we didn’t speak for awhile.
Smells of the Stadium
I’m a huge 49ers fan, despite living in South Dakota. In 2003, I was pumped to go see the Niners play the Vikings in Minneapolis. My seat was next to a lady that had to be pushing 400 pounds and smelled like she hadn’t showered in a week. It was awful.
Plus, the Niners got stomped so bad. It was 28-0 at halftime. Gus Frerotte threw 4 TDs for Minnesota and had a damn near perfect passer rating. Randy Moss caught 3 of those TDs and was closing in on 200 yards before they stopped throwing in the 4th quarter. Jeff Garcia’s 0 TD, 3 INT, 100-ish yard performance got him benched after the 3rd quarter. I was forced to watch Tim Rattay quarterback my favorite team.
My beloved Niners lost 35-7 and I had to endure it sitting next to this smelly lady who was spilling over the side of her seat. It was awful.
I Missed Most of The Third Quarter Because I Was Crying in The Restroom
When I was 8-years-old, I was at the 2003 NBA Finals, Game 6. I’m sitting in pretty good seats and Tim Duncan was an absolute monster that game. At one point when the Nets scored the guy behind me jumped out of his seat and spilled his entire beer all over me, a 8-year-old kid.
My entire body was soaked, and the dude didn’t even have the courtesy to offer me a napkin. I missed most of the 3rd quarter because I was crying in the restroom. Because of that guy, I have gone out of my way to root against the Nets for the past 16 years.
Stuck at the Stadium, After an Awful Experience
I was at the first ever game at Levi’s Stadium on a Monday night in September of 2014. The 49ers blew a 17-point lead and lost to the Bears. The wasted Bears fans behind us wouldn’t shut up during their comeback. The Bears scored 3 TDs in the 4th quarter and 49ers scored nothing and threw 2 INTs.
To make matters worse, a tipsy 49ers fan friend spilled his nachos on my wife’s back when the Bears scored their go-ahead TD. It was a night game and the first NFL regular season game at the stadium. Every stadium employee was clueless about everything. Traffic control was clueless as everyone else. It took 90 minutes to get out of the stadium parking lot.
This is Why Yankees Fans Don’t Go To Fenway
As a Yankees fan, I was at the first series of the 2005 season between the Red Sox and Yankees at Yankee Stadium. I was hanging out by the bullpens before the game, and Keith Foulke tossed me a baseball over the wall. As I was about to catch it, I was tackled to the ground from behind by a person who proceeded to crawl over me and grab the baseball as it rolled away. Of course it was a Red Sox fan.
There was only one way out from that area of the park, so I then had to listen to him brag to his friend about how awesome he was for getting that baseball as I walked behind him. I don’t care what anybody says, Red Sox fans are the WORST.
Nobody Likes You, New England
I was at a game at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, Massachusetts. The tailgate was fantastic; the beers were locally brewed and tasted great. But I was cheering for the visiting team and at least three fans tried to fight me, in front of my kids.
I had my Jets jersey on and every positive play resulted in the entire section screaming at me. Popcorn was thrown, the lines were long, and the traffic was insane because the stadium isn’t close to anything. Because of the Brady/Belichick era Patriots fans have a reason to be cocky, but that doesn’t give you an excuse to be a complete jerk.
Crying Over a Broken Camera
My wife is a photographer. When she was in school studying to be a photographer, we went to a Cavaliers vs Pacers game in Cleveland. She got approved to take photos of the game for a photojournalism class, so she brought her fancy camera and a brand new $800 lens.
Going through the metal detectors, they asked her to put the camera on a table next to the security guys with the wand. She said she wasn’t comfortable putting it on the table with all the bags shuffling around but they insisted. She put it down on the table and sure enough, the old fart security dude shoves a bag on the table and it pushes her camera off onto the floor. It DESTROYED the lens.
We spent most the first half talking with security management, their liability officers, and my wife was in tears the whole time. All the while, I’m wearing a Pacers jersey and every jerk with a little too much sauce in the system has something to say to me. They gave us a free pretzel and moved us down to court level for our trouble and eventually (after some back and forth and a few weeks), we got reimbursed for the lens.
Just Not Right
I’m Asian-American and went to a Boston Celtics game at TD Garden. The guy sitting in front of me had a thick South-Boston accent and was sipping from a flask in his pocket all game.
He was also shouting a lot of racist things at Jeremy Lin, one of the few Asian-American in the NBA. The kicker is that it was Asian American night in Boston.
A Complete Waste of Money
I’m from the Philippines, and my worst experience was when some NBA all-stars were flown in to play against the Philippine National Team. I thought I’d get to see guys like LeBron James and James Harden.
It was hyped as a competitive all-star game and tickets prices were jacked up. But the players didn’t end up playing in the game because of a conflict in their contracts. All that happened is we spent an hour and a half watching them do practice drills.
I saw the Warriors play at the Cavaliers during the 2015-16 season. This was the famous “I hope the locker room still smells like champagne” game. I’m a Cavs fan and we got blown out 132-98. That was bad enough.
But what made it worse was this bandwagon Warriors fan, who was just a teenager, and would not stop talking trash. He spent the entire game laughing every time the Warriors scored or got a stop. “Let’s go, Steph!” “You’re done, LeBron! Too old!” “Cavs suck!” I stayed and watched the entire game with this insufferable kid right behind me, begging the basketball gods for revenge.
These Guys are Professionals?
During college, my friends and I would go to a Timberwolves game every time we were all home on break. One January, we pay for tickets to see them play the Nuggets, who were terrible at the time, so we thought there was a slight chance to see the ever elusive Timberwolves victory.
We thought we were going to watch a professional basketball game, except it ended 78-74. The T-Wolves scored nine lousy points in the 4th quarter, shooting 2 of 20 from the field. It was pitiful.
Without a doubt, the worst display of basketball I have seen in person. It was like both teams were allergic to scoring the basketball.
The Old Days
When I was a little kid, I used to attend a lot of Sonics games at the Kingdome. Back then, they didn’t monitor people for alcohol use very well.
Most people who drank a little too much turned out to be harmless, but I remember one wasted yahoo decking a security officer when she suggested he’d had enough. I was there with another friend my age (10ish) and felt completely helpless. Fortunately, some other adults jumped in and the guy was eventually swarmed by security. I had a long talk with my dad about what it means to be a man that night.
Never Made the Game
This is the saddest thing to ever happen to me. I paid StubHub a lot for nice terrace seats for Kobe Bryant’s last game in Charlotte (closest NBA stadium to me). When I got there, the ticket people bounced me back and forth for “problems with my tickets” until the second quarter when they finally told me they couldn’t accept my tickets. Then I call StubHub and they tell me the wait will be two hours to get off hold.
Finally, the box office people tell me the only tickets left are $900 each. So we went across the street and watched the game at a bar. My last chance to see my idol (not even close to an exaggeration) play in person and I got screwed out of it.
The Company You Keep
I have Detroit Pistons season tickets, and so does the father and son that sit next to me every game. The son is probably around 12 and he is the most insufferable kid I know. He’s constantly yelling and thinks he knows more than the players and coaches.
Also, he’s always making himself a part of my private conversations with whoever I bring to the game with me. I’m glad I’ll have different seats next season!
You’re Killing the Vibe
I got tickets to a Lakers game for my birthday. I didn’t have much money to spend on tickets to anything at the time, so I was really stoked to see my team. I sat in the nose bleed section and for the entire game, a bunch of wasted jerks behind me were talking loud, yelling, kicking my seat, cussing, and just being totally annoying and killing my vibe.
Finally, one of them spills an entire beer on me. I got up and went to the usher and asked for them to be kicked out. They moved me to a different seat instead. It was just a super unpleasant experience and pretty much ruined the whole game to me.
I was obsessed with David Robinson when I was younger. When I was in seventh grade, I received tickets to go see Robinson and the Spurs play the Pistons at the Palace as an early Christmas gift. Two days before Christmas, he broke his foot—out for the season. I figured, at least I’ll still be able to see Sean Elliott, my third favorite player at the time (after Robinson and Joe Dumars). Nope, injured. Maybe I would at least be able to catch Elliott’s replacement, aka the (aging) Human Highlight Film, Dominique Wilkins. Nope, injured. Charles Smith? Chuck Person? Anybody?
Here’s who the Spurs actually ended up trotting out that night: PG – Avery Johnson SG – Vernon Maxwell SF – Monty Williams PF – Carl Herrera C – Will Perdue
The game was awful. Looking at the box score now, I see Grant Hill was three assists shy of a triple-double but it didn’t feel like it. All I remember is Otis Thorpe doing a few of his routine super-palm dunks and Terry Mills making a 3-pointer here or there. And Will Perdue. So much Will Perdue.
I Worked Hard, Why Can’t You?
During my senior year my high school, the varsity basketball coach told us at the start of a Friday practice that the person that plays the hardest/shows the most effort from start to finish will get his two tickets to the Nuggets-Wizards game that night. The seats were right behind where the ESPN broadcasters sit and probably could have fetched me $200-250 per ticket. He specifically told us we could not scalp and he would find out lol.
Long story short, I busted my butt for two hours in practice and won the tickets. I took another kid on the team and made the effort to go downtown to the Verizon Center. I was looking forward to sitting closer than I’d ever sat before. With four minutes left in the 3rd quarter, the Wizards were down 95-61. I should have known going in this would happen, considering the Wizards were 10-39 and started Javaris Crittenton, Mike James, Dominic McGuire, Antawn Jamison, and Darius Songaila. I should have sold the tickets.
People Are Terrible
A few friends and I drove to Philadelphia to see the Syracuse-Villanova game in 2013. I’m a Syracuse grad and was wearing a shirt I got in school with a bunch of fun facts about the school on the back. These jerky Villanova fans behind us spent the whole game condescendingly reciting the back of my shirt just to annoy us. Everything they said the entire game, from game commentary to ridiculous nicknames for the Syracuse players, was meant to purposely annoy us and get under our skin just because we were cheering for the visiting team.
At one point, one of my friends left to say something to an usher, but I guess they can’t do anything about terrible people whose only crime is being annoying. To make it worse, Syracuse lost the game in overtime, so those fools got the last laugh, although Syracuse did make the Final Four that year.
After That, I Decided I’d Never Go To Another Hockey Game
I was at a Dallas Stars vs St. Louis Blues game in 1996. A man in the row behind me caught a puck in the face. I will never forget that moment as long as I live.
It was truly terrifying. After that, I decided that I’d never go to another hockey game again. Ironically, my son’s favorite sport is hockey and he’s been begging me to go to a game for years now.
Left Too Soon
I went to a minor league hockey game when I was 10. The home team, the Rochester Americans, were down 4-2 more than midway through the 3rd period, so my dad says we’re going to leave in order to beat traffic.
Between leaving the arena and getting to the car they scored twice (12 seconds between goals) and went into overtime. We sat in the car and listened to the exciting conclusion to a hockey game a couple hundred yards away. Additionally, I have never attended a sporting ever in which the home team has won.
I’m a Colts fans living in Detroit. When they came to town a few years ago my wife got me tickets for my first NFL experience. I wore my Peyton Manning jersey. It was the game where the Colts were down double digits with 6 minutes left and came back to win with two seconds left on a 4th-down play.
Walking to my car, minding my business, I hear all sorts of colorful things. The one that really got my blood boiling was: “at least our coach doesn’t have cancer,” which came a few weeks after Colts head coach (Chuck Pagano) was diagnosed with leukemia.
Stay classy, Detroit.
Not Saved by the Bell
I went to a Browns game in 2007 when Braylon Edwards was still on the team. My family and I stayed after the game to go see if we could get any autographs. A lot of players signed my football and hat, and we finally get to the front of the line with Braylon Edwards.
He grabs my football, uncaps his sharpie, and is a second away from signing before a little bell goes off in the background, telling the players to wrap it up and go back inside. I couldn’t believe my luck! I was getting the last autograph.
Nope. Braylon capped his sharpie, handed me back the football unsigned, and shrugged his shoulders as if to say, “tough break, kid”. I know it’s not a horror story, but as a kid meeting one of his favorite players, that was pretty heartbreaking.
I was at the 1998 NFC Championship game as a 10-year-old Vikings fan. My dad somehow managed to get two tickets.
We were sitting right in line with the goal posts where Gary Anderson was kicking. I remember thinking: “He hasn’t missed all year, but… maybe this will be the first.” Then when he kicked it, I couldn’t see, but I knew. I just knew.
Get Some New Material
As a Bills fan, I’ve never been insulted more than during a blowout loss against the Redskins I attended with my girlfriend in Landover. I heard the “Boy I Love Losing Super Bowls” line about 3000 times. A father who was sitting in front of us with his daughter threatened to fight me. A guy a few rows ahead of me called my girlfriend a four-letter word.
Finally, as I was leaving the stadium, some wasted jerk in a Redskins jersey drove past me and yelled: “Tom Brady is the greatest QB of all time!” That one didn’t entirely make sense but I commend that guy’s effort in being a moron. I’m not sure I ever want to visit an opposing team’s stadium ever again.
Injuries Are Part of the Game
During a Patriots vs Packers preseason game, I got yelled at for cheering too loud.
Also, a security guard broke one of my toes. I was walking past a security guard and he stomped on my foot and told me to hold up. Admittedly, I had a little too much to drink, but security just didn’t like that I was wearing a Packers cheesehead.