Are The Miami Heat Among The Most Hated NBA Teams?

Are The Miami Heat Among The Most Hated NBA Teams?
Fact Checked by Nate Hamilton

There’s an old adage that success begets success, which is especially true for one of the NBA’s longest-tenured team in the Sunshine State. The Miami Heat have made winning the norm since the arrival of Pat Riley in 1995, winning three titles and winning 50 games 10 times in 36 seasons. That teamwide success breeds contempt from rivals across the league, however, which results in the Heat being among the most hated franchises in the 30-team league. As we are in the lull of the NBA offseason and Florida sports betting discussions, we were interested in who currently are the most hated NBA teams.  

Most Hated NBA Teams (According To Rivalries)

Using Reddit data from user RemyPLambert, found the primary and secondary rivals of each NBA team with a sample size of 1,000 respondents. Something you wouldn't find on Florida betting apps.  If a team was mentioned as a primary rival, that was 10 points. If a team was mentioned as a secondary rival, that was 5 points. We then used the final points to rank the most hated NBA teams.  

RankTeamTeams Naming As Primary RivalTeams Naming As Secondary RivalFinal Points
1Boston Celtics6 teams (60 points)3 teams (15 points)75
2Los Angeles Lakers4 teams (40 points)2 teams (10 points)50
T-3Memphis Grizzlies2 teams (20 points)1 team (5 points)25
T-3Miami Heat2 teams (20 points)1 team (5 points)25
T-3New York Knicks2 teams (20 points)1 team (5 points)25
T-6Golden State Warriors2 teams (20 points)0 teams (0 points)20
T-6Denver Nuggets2 teams (20 points)0 teams (0 points)20

Where Heat Rank On NBA’s Hate Matrix

The Heat have assumed persona non grata status with three teams in total, with two claiming Miami as their primary rival. That leaguewide hate netted the Heat the No. 3 spot, alongside the Memphis Grizzlies and New York Knicks, with a total score of 25 points. Miami finished behind the Boston Celtics (75 points) and Los Angeles Lakers (50 points), while the Golden State Warriors and Denver Nuggets rounded out the list, with 20 points apiece. Of the teams on the NBA’s most hated list, the Heat have the fourth-most championships won, behind the Lakers and Celtics, who have 34 titles between them (17 apiece), as well as the Warriors, who have seven titles.   



Christopher Boan writes for and has been covering sports and sports betting for more than seven years, with experience at, the Tucson Weekly and the Green Valley News.

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