ESPN The Magazine released its ‘The Ultimate Standings’ rankings for 2011 today and the San Antonio Spurs were named the top NBA franchise and the fifth-best professional team out of 122 total teams from the NBA, NFL, NHL and MLB franchises.
The Spurs have ranked as the top NBA franchise six times and is the only franchise to have been named the top overall team twice among the four major sports since ESPN introduced its annual survey in 2003.
“It is with great pride that we congratulate the San Antonio Spurs for being ranked as ESPN The Magazine’s top NBA franchise for the sixth time,” said NBA Commissioner David Stern. “San Antonio’s commitment to excellence starts with owner Peter Holt, is instilled in every member of the organization, and makes the Spurs a model franchise both on and off the court.”
The Spurs ranked number one overall in two categories that were part of the judging process to determine the best overall sports franchise; ‘fan relations’ and ‘players.’ ‘Fan relations’ is described as the openness and consideration of players, coaches and management toward fans and the ‘players’ category is described as the effort on the court and the likeability off the court of franchise players.
Spurs Chairman and CEO Peter Holt was ranked as the top NBA “Ultimate Boss,” second overall among sports franchise owners, based on the criteria of honesty, commitment to their communities and loyalty to core players.
“This is truly a testament to the outstanding leadership and dedicated commitment to excellence from our basketball and business operations,” said Spurs Sports & Entertainment Chairman and CEO Peter Holt. “Our success is measured not only by what we do, but how we do it. By once again ranking first in fan relations showcases our loyalty to our community and exemplifies the passion our fans have as the best among professional teams.”
The Ultimate Standings debuted in 2003 with the Spurs ranked #3 overall with the Green Bay Packers at #1. and the Arizona Diamondbacks at #2. In 2004, the Spurs garnered their first title ranking from ESPN, followed by the Dallas Mavericks at #2 and the Green Bay Packers at #3.
In 2005, the Spurs ranked an impressive #2 behind the Detroit Pistons, and ahead of the #3 ranked Indianapolis Colts. In 2006, a year after their third NBA Title, the Spurs were voted to the top of the list again with the Detroit Pistons at #2 and Pittsburgh Steelers at #3.
The Spurs finished second behind the Buffalo Sabers and above NBA Division Rival the Dallas Mavericks (#3) in 2007. The following year, the Spurs were ranked second overall behind the Indianapolis Colts (#1). In 2009, San Antonio ranked #9 overall and in 2010 ranked 7th.
This is definitely another great honor for the Spurs franchise and their fans. Share your thoughts about this good news.