The NBA Playoffs have arrived, and the first round has been a doozy so far. Atlanta turned Indiana into the saddest team on the planet. The Clippers scored 138 points in a single playoff game! Kevin Durant went into straight Ringling Bros. mode, and Russell Westbrook dunked so hard the rim pressed charges. If you want to join the fun but your favorite team fell short of the post-season, what do you do?
Fear not, fan without a team. The Playoffs are for two things: entertainment and hopping on the bandwagon of a team with which you previously had no affiliation. It’s OK! A handful of teams are waiting for you to jump aboard. Here are six teams relatively new to the Playoffs that could use your support. We tell you which one might fit you best.
Root For the Toronto Raptors if . . .
- You own every Drake album, and his softer, R&B-style songs speak to you when you’ve had a tough day.
- You think the Raptors’ cartoon dinosaur logo is “super hip,” and his talons popping through his undersized tennis shoes do not look ridiculous.
- Game of Thrones is by far your favorite show on television, and the team’s “We the North” commercial makes you want to grab a sword and fight all the White Walkers.
- You like how the name DeMar Derozan sounds, and you’ve been talking up Kyle Lowry for years, even if you’re not exactly sure what he looks like.
Root For the Portland Trail Blazers if . . .
- You’ve ever taken a quiz entitled “what kind of craft brewery are you?”
- You want to visit the Pacific Northwest in the fall because your friend who has a great aunt in Seattle says it’s nice that time of year.
- LaMarcus Aldridge, for whatever reason, reminds you of a giant teddy bear with a killer jump shot.
- You totally get what head coach Terry Stotts was going for with this look, and you have that same exact jacket in your closet.
- You think the dog tattoo Blazers point guard Mo Williams has on his arm looks just like him.
Root For the Charlotte Bobcats if . . .
- You’re an underdog. Like, you’ve been an underdog your entire life. Like, you almost dated that model in high school, but she was all like, “oh, never mind, you’re wearing a Transformers shirt.”
- You think Michael Jordan’s suits fit him just right, and you hope to meet him one day to tell him that.
- You get offended when someone makes fun of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist’s jumper.
- You wish Al Jefferson would sit on a rocking chair and tell you stories of the old days.
- You’re a fan of exotic cats and almost purchased one on eBay when you were super tired one night, before thinking better of it.
Root For the Houston Rockets if . . .
- You laugh right along with Dwight Howard when someone tells a knock-knock joke.
- You haven’t shaved in over a year, just because you wanted to see what your face would look like.
- You still haven’t fully recovered from Linsanity (you’ve missed work to watch re-runs of Lin’s famous games on your DVR).
- You think McDonald’s red and yellow color combo would make a great summertime get-up. You bought a shirt in college from a flea market that says, “Everything is bigger in Texas,” even though it had a mustard stain on it.
Root For the Brooklyn Nets if . . .
- You enjoy shouting “Broooooooklyn” at your friends when you see them, even though you live nowhere near New York City.
- You believe all NBA arenas should include clubs, in case you get bored with the game and need to dance to Pharrell for a minute.
- Your ideal outfit is whatever people in the coffee shop nearby are currently wearing.
- You move like an extraordinarily tired sloth, but somehow still manage to dominate life, like Paul Pierce.
- You refer to Jay-Z as “my dude” and swear you had that beat for “Public Service Announcement” years before he did.
- Old men playing basketball warm your heart.
Root For the Atlanta Hawks if . . .
- You aren’t really sure what “where the players play” actually means, but you’ve been searching high and low to find out.
- You’ve still got Lil’ John screaming “WHAT” as your phone’s text message notification.
- People haven’t said “Hot-lanta” since the early 2000s, but it’s the only way you refer to the city.
- You’ve followed Shelvin Mack’s career at a weirdly close distance, because Butler University is what you imagine heaven is like.