Fans React: The Best and Worst of the In-Season Tournament Courts

The NBA’s first In-Season Tournament draws to a close this week with a champion to be crowned this Saturday, December 9th. While the tournament has provided fans with exciting on-court action, the courts themselves have been one of the hottest topics of the season. While some are beautiful like a Steph Curry 3-pointer, others are more like Shaq shooting free throws - tough to look at.

We at VegasInsider analyzed the sentiment of comments on Instagram posts that focused on the court design from all 30 NBA teams to determine which designs fans liked most and least. The top and bottom 5 are listed below, with the percentages of positive or negative comments they received listed beside them, respectively.

The 5 Most Popular Court Designs

  1. Washington Wizards - 68.75% positive comments
  2. Toronto Raptors - 65.95% positive comments
  3. Sacramento Kings - 63.88% positive comments
  4. Minnesota Timberwolves - 61.88% positive comments
  5. Orlando Magic - 60.09% positive comments

The 5 Least Popular Court Designs

  1. Dallas Mavericks - 58.85% negative comments
  2. Philadelphia 76ers - 56.72% negative comments
  3. Milwaukee Bucks - 42.65% negative comments
  4. Indiana Pacers - 42.31% negative comments
  5. New Orleans Pelicans - 40.48% negative comments

The Trends

Gray is in. Four of the five courts with the highest percentage of positive comments have gray as their base color. Minnesota’s baby blue floor rounds out the top five and also features a muted color scheme. Fans liked that these courts were sleek and easy to look at (a common issue with some less-popular courts, as we’ll get to in a moment). Each of the top rated courts utilized fairly simple designs that are aesthetically pleasing without distracting viewers from the games being played. In the last week of the tournament only one of the fan favorite courts will be seen, as the Kings were the only team in the top five to make the knockout round.

On the flip side, three of the five lowest ranked courts went the opposite way, using bold and loud color schemes that many fans said hurt their eyes.  The 76ers were the biggest offender in that sense, with their red and blue court being more of a distraction than an eye pleaser. The most unpopular court, surprisingly, didn’t have that issue though. The Mavericks also utilized a gray court design like many of the highest rated floors, but were accused of being the one thing no entertainment brand wants to be: boring. The same issue plagued the Milwaukee Bucks, with both courts being considered too plain to stack up against some of the more exciting ones created for the tournament. Unfortunately, fans are going to see more of the courts they don’t like than the ones they do, as three teams ranked in the bottom five (the Bucks, Pacers, and Pelicans) remain alive in the closing week of the tournament.