“The Eagles suck, I can’t wait til the Patriots stomp them this weekend.” While those might sound like fighting words, it’s a common language between friends at the local bar or at home over a barbeque. Speak to any real sports fan, and they’ll tell you everything you need to know about their team with a level of enthusiasm that’s truly “fanatical.” Sports fans take events seriously, whether it’s the NFL, NBA, MLB, or any college sports. Put two opposing supporters together, and you can expect a healthy dose of entertaining arguments that hopefully end in a good laugh, not a riot. In this post, we highlight a few ideas on fun ways for friends to bond over sports rivalries.
Fun Ways For Friends To Bond Over Sports Rivalries
The fuel that ignites the passion of sports fans is the heated rivalries that bring out the best (and sometimes the worst) in them. From the historic clashes of the Boston Red Sox vs. New York Yankees to the college football showdowns like Ohio State vs. Michigan and the Iron Bowl (Alabama vs. Auburn), rivalries keep fans glued to the screen and their hearts in their throats.
High School Rivalries
It’s not just professional sports that spark passion. High school rivalries, like San Francisco’s Sacred Heart Cathedral vs. St. Ignatius, are a hotbed of intense sports moments.
These games are a reminder that the love for sports rivalries begins at a young age and can last a lifetime.
Head To Head
Rivalry games are the ultimate test for any sports fan. Whether it’s the Los Angeles Lakers vs. Boston Celtics in the NBA Finals or the Stanley Cup Final between two favorite teams, these matchups are where friendships are put to the test. The regular season is one thing, but when it comes to the championship, every play counts
Trash Talking And The Hall Of Fame
Sports rivalries are incomplete without a little trash-talking. For instance, George Kittle’s shirt can be a symbol of rivalry even among players. As Tom Brady’s fans banter with his detractors, remember that it’s all in good fun. Just like athletes striving for a spot in the Hall of Fame, friends bond over the thrill of competition and camaraderie.
Have A BBQ On Game Day
While going to the stadium to watch a game is the ultimate way to experience an American sports event, you can have just as much fun at home and cultivate a healthy rivalry with your friends. If the summer months are upon you, enjoy a day outside and host a barbeque for your buddies before you settle in to watch the game.
Watching at home might not have the same atmosphere as visiting the stadium, but you can dress up the venue to show your friends who’s in charge. Wearing your favorite player’s shirt to the BBQ or game day get-together is a way to proudly represent your team. It’s like displaying your team’s banner, and it can be the subject of friendly banter among friends.
Is there anything better than bonding over a few burgers on the grill and some chilled brews?
What’s a game without a friendly wager? While most people bet money on games, you can use other incentives as wagers. Tell the loser they must buy drinks for the next game or host the BBQ. Nominate a challenge and have the loser do something embarrassing but not reputation damaging.
There are many ideas for friendly wagers, but you can always go with real money bets if you want to up the ante and put some financial risk on the line. Remember, it’s all for fun, so don’t aim to drain your buddy’s bank accounts if they lose.
A Banner Competition
Challenge your friends to a banner competition. Create a banner celebrating your team and bring it to the BBQ to show support for your favorite sports team. Whoever has the better banner has to pay for the hotdogs or buy the beer.
Turn Your Homes Into Stadiums – Home & Away
If one friend supports the Eagles, and the other is a Patriots fan, turn your den into a stadium with posters of your team and other fanfare trinkets representing the iconic stadiums of sports teams nationwide. You can invite friends around to watch home games and treat it like a real stadium.
Remember, It’s All For Fun
Let’s face it, sports rivalries can get heated; just ask Eagles fans. You don’t want to sever your friendships over a game; it’s not worth it. Keep things heated but entertaining. That can be challenging when there’s alcohol involved, so ensure no one overdoes it and keep things friendly.
Bonding over sports rivalries is about the love of the game and the camaraderie it brings, and that’s what makes it all the more special. So, enjoy the game, celebrate your team, and remember that it’s all in good fun.
Additional Reading: Teach Your Children the Fun and Safe Way to Have a Sports Rivalry
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