The 18 Greatest Fictional Sports Teams of All Time
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The 18 Greatest Fictional Sports Teams of All Time

by: Esteban On  Tuesday, February 17, 2015
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greatest fictional sports teams of all time

Real sports teams letting you down lately? Why not invest your emotions in fictional sports teams from film or television instead? They may not always win. They may not always play fair. They may not even always play sports that actually exist. But whether losing in a blaze or glory or winning in the most improbable, implausible way, they’re always entertaining. And that’s way more than you could say or the New York Knicks or Edmonton Oilers, just to name the first two terrible teams that popped into my head.

Today, in order to encourage you throw off the burdensome yolk of rooting for real sports teams who let you down, we present you with this list of the 18 greatest fictional sports teams of all time. Take a look, and come join me in the land of make-believe.

 

greatest fictional sports teams of all time

Real sports teams letting you down lately? Why not invest your emotions in fictional sports teams from film or television instead? They may not always win. They may not always play fair. They may not even always play sports that actually exist. But whether losing in a blaze or glory or winning in the most improbable, implausible way, they’re always entertaining. And that’s way more than you could say or the New York Knicks or Edmonton Oilers, just to name the first two terrible teams that popped into my head.

Today, in order to encourage you throw off the burdensome yolk of rooting for real sports teams who let you down, we present you with this list of the 18 greatest fictional sports teams of all time. Take a look, and come join me in the land of make-believe.

 

18 miami sharks (any given sunday) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Any Given Sunday

In Any Given Sunday, Al Pacino plays an old, worn-down coach who leads a once-great football franchise, the Miami Sharks, back to glory. It’s basically football porn for Dolphins, R******s, Bears, and Raiders fans.

 

18. Miami Sharks

18 miami sharks (any given sunday) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Any Given Sunday

In Any Given Sunday, Al Pacino plays an old, worn-down coach who leads a once-great football franchise, the Miami Sharks, back to glory. It’s basically football porn for Dolphins, R******s, Bears, and Raiders fans.

 

17 new york knights (the natural) - fictional sports movies

Film or TV Show: The Natural

What’s not to like about the New York Knights? Robert Redford plays a slugger who hits moon shots with his magical lightning bat, Wilford Brimley is the manager, and they basically inspired the entire plot of Major League—which of course was a movie about a real baseball team.

 

17. New York Knights

17 new york knights (the natural) - fictional sports movies

Film or TV Show: The Natural

What’s not to like about the New York Knights? Robert Redford plays a slugger who hits moon shots with his magical lightning bat, Wilford Brimley is the manager, and they basically inspired the entire plot of Major League—which of course was a movie about a real baseball team.

 

16 washington sentinels (the replacements) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Replacements

The Sentinels are the quintessential loveable losers. Their offensive tackle is a sumo wrestler, their kicker is a drunken Welsh soccer player, their quarterback is Neo from the Matrix, their coach is the coach from Hoosiers, and their cheerleaders are strippers. Literally nothing not to like.

 

16. Washington Sentinels

16 washington sentinels (the replacements) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Replacements

The Sentinels are the quintessential loveable losers. Their offensive tackle is a sumo wrestler, their kicker is a drunken Welsh soccer player, their quarterback is Neo from the Matrix, their coach is the coach from Hoosiers, and their cheerleaders are strippers. Literally nothing not to like.

 

15-texas-state-university-armadillos-necessary-roughness-fictional-sports-teams.jpg

Film or TV Show: Necessary Roughness

If you liked the Sentinels from The Replacements, you’ll like the Armadillos from Necessary Roughness. The former is a fictional pro team, the latter a fictional college team. But the movies share the same basic premise: circumstances force football organizations to field ragtag teams comprised of football misfits and former prospects. Ragtag teams overcome the odds to upset football juggernauts.

Of course, at the end of the day, the Armadillos are way more awesome than the Sentinels. They’ve got Scott Bakula (former quarterback prospect), Kathy Ireland (sexy soccer player-turned-kicker), Jason Bateman (as some guy), AND Sinbad. Because it was the early 90s.

 

15. Texas State Armadillos

15-texas-state-university-armadillos-necessary-roughness-fictional-sports-teams.jpg

Film or TV Show: Necessary Roughness

If you liked the Sentinels from The Replacements, you’ll like the Armadillos from Necessary Roughness. The former is a fictional pro team, the latter a fictional college team. But the movies share the same basic premise: circumstances force football organizations to field ragtag teams comprised of football misfits and former prospects. Ragtag teams overcome the odds to upset football juggernauts.

Of course, at the end of the day, the Armadillos are way more awesome than the Sentinels. They’ve got Scott Bakula (former quarterback prospect), Kathy Ireland (sexy soccer player-turned-kicker), Jason Bateman (as some guy), AND Sinbad. Because it was the early 90s.

 

14 the milwaukee beers (baseketball) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: BASEketball

If fictional sports teams playing sports that actually exist is still a little too real for you, the Milwaukee Beers is the team for you. They play BASEketball, the titular sport from the movie BASEketball. 

If for some reason you’ve never seen that “classic” sports film starring Trey Parker and Matt Stone, BASEketball is basically a hybrid of horse and basketball. And—SPOILER ALERT—the Beers win the championship in the end.

 

14. Milwaukee Beers

14 the milwaukee beers (baseketball) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: BASEketball

If fictional sports teams playing sports that actually exist is still a little too real for you, the Milwaukee Beers is the team for you. They play BASEketball, the titular sport from the movie BASEketball. 

If for some reason you’ve never seen that “classic” sports film starring Trey Parker and Matt Stone, BASEketball is basically a hybrid of horse and basketball. And—SPOILER ALERT—the Beers win the championship in the end.

 

13 the mean machine (longest yard 1975) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Longest Yard

FYI, we’re not talking about the Mean Machine from the 2005 remake. That version of the team did have Nelly and Bill Goldberg, which was awesome, but Adam Sanlder was the quarterback, which is just ridiculous.

We’re talking about the original Mean Machine—the one that had Burt Reynolds and Packers legend Ray Nitschke. That was an awesome fictional sports team.

 

13. The Mean Machine

13 the mean machine (longest yard 1975) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Longest Yard

FYI, we’re not talking about the Mean Machine from the 2005 remake. That version of the team did have Nelly and Bill Goldberg, which was awesome, but Adam Sanlder was the quarterback, which is just ridiculous.

We’re talking about the original Mean Machine—the one that had Burt Reynolds and Packers legend Ray Nitschke. That was an awesome fictional sports team.

 

12 average joes (dodge ball) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

The Average Joe’s are one of the greatest fictional dodgeball teams of all time. In addition to Vince Vaughn, the team had a guy who thought he was a pirate, a couple of major nerds, a coach who threw wrenches at them, and Milton from Office Space. This team was epic.

 

12. Average Joes

12 average joes (dodge ball) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

The Average Joe’s are one of the greatest fictional dodgeball teams of all time. In addition to Vince Vaughn, the team had a guy who thought he was a pirate, a couple of major nerds, a coach who threw wrenches at them, and Milton from Office Space. This team was epic.

 

11 globogym purple cobras (dodge ball) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

The only fictional dodgeball team greater than the Average Joes? That would be the Globogym Purple Cobras. They may not have won in the end, but they have Ben Stiller, a chick with a unibrow, and an awesome Cobra dance. What more do you need?

 

11. Globogym Purple Cobras

11 globogym purple cobras (dodge ball) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story

The only fictional dodgeball team greater than the Average Joes? That would be the Globogym Purple Cobras. They may not have won in the end, but they have Ben Stiller, a chick with a unibrow, and an awesome Cobra dance. What more do you need?

 

10 myrtle beach mermen - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Eastbound & Down

The Myrtle Beach Mermen are based pretty closely on the real-life Class A Myrtle Beach Pelicans. However, any team that has Kenny F#%&ing Powers can’t be that real, you know?

Plus, they’re called the Mermen, which is just fantastic.

 

10. Myrtle Beach Mermen

10 myrtle beach mermen - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Eastbound & Down

The Myrtle Beach Mermen are based pretty closely on the real-life Class A Myrtle Beach Pelicans. However, any team that has Kenny F#%&ing Powers can’t be that real, you know?

Plus, they’re called the Mermen, which is just fantastic.

 

9 west canaan high coyotes (varsity blues) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Varsity Blues

How can you not love this team? They fired their own asshole coach during the championship game, put the old quarterback in charge, and won the game with Dawson from Dawson’s Creek.

(Side note: RIP Paul Walker.)

 

9. West Canaan High Coyotes

9 west canaan high coyotes (varsity blues) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Varsity Blues

How can you not love this team? They fired their own asshole coach during the championship game, put the old quarterback in charge, and won the game with Dawson from Dawson’s Creek.

(Side note: RIP Paul Walker.)

 

8 south central louisiana state mud dogs (the water boy) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Water Boy

In The Water Boy, Adam Sandler plays a dimwitted kid from the Bayou who channels his pent up rage into bone-crushing football hits and leads the SCLSU Mud Dogs to the Bourbon Bowl against their most bitter rivals.

How can you not love a football team whose best player is 5’10″?

 

8. South Central Louisiana State Mud Dogs

8 south central louisiana state mud dogs (the water boy) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Water Boy

In The Water Boy, Adam Sandler plays a dimwitted kid from the Bayou who channels his pent up rage into bone-crushing football hits and leads the SCLSU Mud Dogs to the Bourbon Bowl against their most bitter rivals.

How can you not love a football team whose best player is 5’10″?

 

7 the mighty ducks - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Mighty Ducks

A bunch of loser kids with an a-hole coach who doesn’t want to be there? The Ducks are basically the squeaky-clean ice hockey version of the next team on our list…

 

7. Ducks

7 the mighty ducks - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Mighty Ducks

A bunch of loser kids with an a-hole coach who doesn’t want to be there? The Ducks are basically the squeaky-clean ice hockey version of the next team on our list…

 

6 the bad news bears (original) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Bad News Bears

As with the Mean Machine, we’re talking about the original Bears here, not the 2005 remake. (Seriously, what was it with 2005?) In the 2005 remake, the coach (Billy Bob Thornton) gives the kids non-alcoholic beer. In the 1976 original, the coach (Walter Matthau) gives them real beer.

It’s obvious which team was more awesome.

 

6. Bears

6 the bad news bears (original) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Bad News Bears

As with the Mean Machine, we’re talking about the original Bears here, not the 2005 remake. (Seriously, what was it with 2005?) In the 2005 remake, the coach (Billy Bob Thornton) gives the kids non-alcoholic beer. In the 1976 original, the coach (Walter Matthau) gives them real beer.

It’s obvious which team was more awesome.

 

5 copales charros (kenny powers) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Eastbound & Down

The greatest fictional sports team Kenny Powers ever played for? That’s easy. It was the Copales Charros. After all, it was while player for the Charros that Kenny made the greatest pitcher entrance of all time.

 

5. Copales Charros

5 copales charros (kenny powers) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Eastbound & Down

The greatest fictional sports team Kenny Powers ever played for? That’s easy. It was the Copales Charros. After all, it was while player for the Charros that Kenny made the greatest pitcher entrance of all time.

 

4 springfield isatopes (the simpsons) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Simpsons

The Springfield Isotopes have been featured in a number of great Simpsons episodes over the last 26 years. There Dancin’ Homer in season 5, when Homer became the team’s mascot. And there was Wild Barts Can’t Be Broken in season 11, when Homer, Lenny, and Karl go on a drunken rampage after the Isotopes win the championship.

The best episode, though, was Hungry, Hungry Homer in season 12, when Homer went on a hunger strike to protest the Isotopes moving to Albuquerque. That’s the episode that actually inspired the Albuquerque Dukes of the Pacific Coast League to change their name the Isotopes.

How awesome is that?

 

4. Springfield Isatopes

4 springfield isatopes (the simpsons) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: The Simpsons

The Springfield Isotopes have been featured in a number of great Simpsons episodes over the last 26 years. There Dancin’ Homer in season 5, when Homer became the team’s mascot. And there was Wild Barts Can’t Be Broken in season 11, when Homer, Lenny, and Karl go on a drunken rampage after the Isotopes win the championship.

The best episode, though, was Hungry, Hungry Homer in season 12, when Homer went on a hunger strike to protest the Isotopes moving to Albuquerque. That’s the episode that actually inspired the Albuquerque Dukes of the Pacific Coast League to change their name the Isotopes.

How awesome is that?

 

3 space jam toon squad - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Space Jam

If you don’t know the plot of Space Jam, I’m not going to explain it. Let’s just say Michael Jordan winds up playing on a basketball team with Bugs Bunny, Yosemite Same, Tazmanian Devil…and Bill Murray. So yeah, this is obviously one of the greatest fictional sports teams ever.

 

3. TuneSquad

3 space jam toon squad - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Space Jam

If you don’t know the plot of Space Jam, I’m not going to explain it. Let’s just say Michael Jordan winds up playing on a basketball team with Bugs Bunny, Yosemite Same, Tazmanian Devil…and Bill Murray. So yeah, this is obviously one of the greatest fictional sports teams ever.

 

2 flint tropics (semi-pro) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Semi-Pro

You might have assumed that the Flint Tropics was a real ABA team from the 70s since the other ABA teams in the movie—like the Spurs and Nets—were real ABA teams. But no. The Tropics were totally made up, as were the characters Jackie Moon (Will Ferrell), Ed Monix (Woody Harrelson), and Clarence Withers (Andre Benjamin, aka Andre 3000).

 

2. Flint Tropics

2 flint tropics (semi-pro) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Semi-Pro

You might have assumed that the Flint Tropics was a real ABA team from the 70s since the other ABA teams in the movie—like the Spurs and Nets—were real ABA teams. But no. The Tropics were totally made up, as were the characters Jackie Moon (Will Ferrell), Ed Monix (Woody Harrelson), and Clarence Withers (Andre Benjamin, aka Andre 3000).

 

1 the charlestown chiefs (slap shot) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Slap Shot

The Flint Tropics are fantastic, but the greatest fictional sports team of all time is still the Charlestown Chiefs, a team of goons led by the infamous Hanson Brothers and the late great Paul Newman.

Seriously, if you’ve never seen this movie, you need to just walk right up to your boss right now, that jerk you’re sick, and then go home and watch it.

 

1. Charlestown Chiefs

1 the charlestown chiefs (slap shot) - fictional sports teams

Film or TV Show: Slap Shot

The Flint Tropics are fantastic, but the greatest fictional sports team of all time is still the Charlestown Chiefs, a team of goons led by the infamous Hanson Brothers and the late great Paul Newman.

Seriously, if you’ve never seen this movie, you need to just walk right up to your boss right now, that jerk you’re sick, and then go home and watch it.

 



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