In a poll conducted by Play AZ, Benny the Bull was ranked the 2nd best mascot in the NBA. Mascots are a lot like that kid at the party who everyone knows and enjoys and always brings the energy but isn’t quite memorable enough to a) steal the show and b) talk about the next day. In the realm of kids at the party, the Chicago Bulls have a damn good one.
Play AZ surveyed basketball fans across the country in order to come to the final results. They were asked who they thought was the best and who they thought was the worst amongst all of the official mascots in the association. Whether it be because fans enjoy the mascot’s energy, the insane behind-the-back-over-the-shoulder half court shots or because, like the indelible Benny the Bull, they once had popcorn dumped on them; fans wanted their voice to be heard.
So who beat out Benny the Bull at No. 1, you ask? That would be Denver Nuggets’ mascot Rocky the Mountain Lion. Rocky received nearly a 4 out of 5 rating, while Benny slide right in behind him at 3.86. Other mascots rounding out the Top 5 included Grizz of the Memphis Grizzles (obviously), Champ from the Dallas Mavericks, and Bango the Buck, who until today, I did not know was the name of the mascot for the defending NBA Champion Milwaukee Bucks.
For every top 5 there must be a bottom 5. The Hall of Shame as it pertains to this poll includes the likes of Slamson the Lion (Sacramento Kings), Lucky the Leprechaun (Boston Celtics), Go the Gorilla (Phoenix Suns), The Coyote (San Antonio Spurs), and Mavs Man—whom is the second official mascot of the Dallas Mavericks. Psh and here I was thinking that was Mark Cuban.
Four teams in the NBA do not have an official mascot. They are: the New York Knicks, the Brooklyn Nets, the Golden State Warriors, and the Los Angeles Lakers. I do not have an answer as to why these four teams think they’re too cool to have a mascot. Perhaps it’s because there’s enough celebrity sightings at any one of these arenas to cast the next Ocean’s movie. Perhaps it’s because Steph Curry, LeBron James, Kevin Durant, and Spike Lee provide enough in-game entertainment that they don’t need one. We’ll never know.
What we do know is that our beloved Benny the Bull was ranked second, and rightfully so. We may be biased and think he’s the best mascot in all of sports, let alone just basketball but we digress. For a bit of insight into the methodology behind the poll continue reading. Until then, we’ll see you in Section 304 getting a bag of popcorn the size of a body pillow dumped on us mid way through the second quarter.
To determine the ranking, Play AZ surveyed more than 1,500 NBA fans across the country to ask them to rate every official NBA mascot on a scale of 1-5. Ratings were then averaged for each mascot. Among respondents, 50% were male and 50% were female with an average age of 30. Note: the Brooklyn Nets, Golden State Warriors, Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks do not have official mascots, so they were not included in this list.
Featured Image Credit: Shorty Awards