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9 Gayest-Sounding NBA Team Names

by: Howard Cosmell On  Friday, April 15, 2011
Tags:  Bucks   Clippers   Grizzlies   Kings   Mavericks   Pistons  

There’s only 32 teams in the NBA, and practically a third of them conjure up some sort of homoerotic undertones or phallic imagery. Why is that? With other sports, it’s still uncannily high (like 20%), but the NBA really seems to go the extra mile. I’m not going to speculate as to why. That’s for David Stern’s advisers to do. But I would be remiss if I didn’t point it out and make fun of it a little (not in a Kobe Bryant way, mind you). So let’s light this gay candle…

9. Rockets
Blast off! Here’s a promise to you. Every NBA team from Texas will be on this list. For such a conservative state, their sports teams sure are rife with imagery. Every sports team seems to be some sort of synonym for Cowboy, which was fine until Ang Lee decided to show us what life on the range could really be like in Brokeback Mountain.
 
 
8. Mavericks
(Speaking of Brokeback Mountain) Oh, Mavericks. I wish I knew how to quit you. This is my basketball team, and I still get images of a duded-up Mel Gibson playing cards, all the while ignoring Jodie Foster and her petticoats. Couple that with the sight of Jason Terry, and you’re left with a very confusing image. There’s a reason they’re called “the Mavs” in everyday parlance. It’s because the connection to homoerotic pickup volleyball games is effin’ strong with this team.
 
7. Bucks
I’m trying to think of a less gay-friendly city than Milwaukee. I can think of a few, but not many. Cleveland comes to mind. But few cities rock a team name that is less pseudo-masculine than “Buck.” Really, you’re not fooling anyone, guys. Buck may rock a trucker hat and a down vest, but trust me…it’s all an act.
 
 
6. Clippers
A Clipper is a ship, so I think about sailors. So really all you have to do is mention the Clippers and within seconds, I have seamen on the brain. Hard to recover from that. That said I’m pretty sure the Clippers are progressive in name only, as Donald Sterling would probably ban any effeminate behavior. Right before he bans breathing and raises ticket prices another 80% because Blake Griffin now exists.
 
 
5. Thunder
(I am very aware this is a picture of lightning, but gimme a break. It’s tough to depict a sound visually.)
I remember on top of every cab in Vegas for a few years (it might still be running, I’m hardly an aficionado), there were signs for an All-Male beefcake review thing called the Thunder from Down Under. I guess they were supposed to be really hot dudes who dance for ladies. My friends and I developed a running joke about asking cabbies how the show was and if it was worth our time and money. Well, it’s not a great connotation to have for your team. You might as well call your team the Fabios. All that greasy hair. Gross.
 
4. Grizzlies
In the first Jackass, the gang has a contest to see who can produce the most ejaculate. Don’t act so surprised. It’s Jackass. Anyway, Johnny Knoxville is about to enter the spank room, when he opens his coat to reveal his “secret weapon.’ It’s a copy of American Grizzly magazine, which a cursory Internet search has proven is, in fact, a magazine for gay men with a lumberjack fetish/attraction. Whatever. Thinking of “bears” doesn’t help much.
 
3. Tie: Wizards and Kings
They’re not explicitly gay, but they’re bound to raise an eyebrow. I mean they’re both names that conjure up flamboyantly dressed men with strange affectations and an affinity for fashionable hats. Basically, I’m including any team on this list that allows me to ignore the elephant in the room, the Nuggets. I’m not going to talk about the Nuggets, and I just have a few more spots to fill before I’m clear. Please don’t ask me, “What about the Nuggets, good sir?” I’m just not strong enough to refrain from responding.
 
2. Pistons
Do you want me to draw you a map? Let’s not make this article more difficult than it for me to negotiate in a tasteful manner. We’re almost done, and I think I’ve done a pretty good job. If you don’t get this one, track down your sixth grade bio teacher and write them a strongly worded letter.
 
 
 
1. Spurs
Jingle, jangle, cowboys. That’s the trifecta for Texas. I guess “assless chaps” wouldn’t fit on their jerseys. I actually think that adopting the new moniker the “San Antonio Mustaches” is just as gay and wayyyyyy funnier, but their front office doesn’t seem to be getting my emails, voicemails, phone calls, tweets, or airplane banners. Does anyone have David Robinson’s contact info? I’m sure the Admiral still has their ear. Dammit, there’s that naval motif again.




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