Everything you need to know to go to an NBA game in the United States.

Everything you need to know to go to an NBA game in the United States.

Yo buddies. Do you dream of going on vacation to the United States and attending an NBA game while you are there? In order to help you realize this dream, we will give you all the necessary information. To do this, we will introduce you to the best basketball teams in the NBA, the best cities outside basketball, average ticket prices and finally we will tell you where and how to get your tickets

Which are the best teams?

Quickly, we will present you the best teams according to two criteria. First, we will introduce you to the best teams located in cultural, historical and internationally renowned tourist cities. Secondly, we will introduce you to the right resident teams from small American markets.

New York

On the basketball side, the New York Knicks are lame and undergoing reconstruction, but they own the most famous and mythical amphitheatre in the world with Madison Square Garden (MSG). In addition, the latter was renovated 3 years ago and is now ultra-modern in terms of various technologies. However, once in New York, you can also see their little New York brother, the Nets, play in Brooklyn. The Nets, over the summer, acquired Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving. Therefore, they should be one of the powers of the Eastern Association and they will be very exciting to watch.

Los Angeles and California

Los Angeles (LA) no longer needs a presentation, this city is the very symbol of the American dream. The Lakers, the second most successful team in history with 16 championships, and despite a pitiful 2018-2019 season, should return to success. Indeed, thanks to the healthy return of the best player in the world, Lebron James, who will be supported by Anthony Davis, the Lakers will once again be seeking great honours.

Then, the Clippers their Staple Center roommates will also be watching as they have acquired Kahwi Leonard and Paul George and they may compete with the Lakers on the court and in the heart of the Californians. It should be noted that it is generally much easier to purchase tickets for Clippers games than for Lakers games.

Since we are already in California, it is time to talk about the Golden State Warriors. The latter form the last dynasty of the NBA with 3 titles since 2015. Located in Oakland, the city is not very glamorous, but all you have to do is cross the Golden Gate to find yourself in the pearl of the Pacific San Francisco.

Toronto Raptors

Last defending champion and despite the loss of their star player Kahwi Leonard, they will try to defend their championship. Toronto is the only non-American city in the NBA. For the hundreds of thousands of French people who visit Canada, and Quebec in particular, every year. It is important to note that Toronto is the closest basketball city to Montreal. You will have to calculate a trip of about 4 hours by car compared to 6 hours for New York. In addition, it will be easier for you to find cheaper tickets in Toronto than in New York. The same goes for airline tickets, but prices are also much cheaper in the Toronto direction.

Boston and Philadelphia

These are two great teams from the East Coast based in cities full of history. We will come back to these destinations in more detail when we talk about the best sporting environments.

Best NBA teams from small markets.

The Milwaukee Bucks were the best team of the regular season in the 2018-2019 season, but they had to lose in the Eastern Final to the future champions, the Raptors. Unfortunately for Milwaukee, the city is best known worldwide for its sordid serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer rather than their beers, the MLB Brewers and the Bucks and their superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo. In the same vein, you will find excellent teams in cities with few tourist attractions such as Portland’s Trail Blazers, James Harden’s Houston Rockets and San Antonio’s Spurs.

Best cities outside of basketball

There is no need to mention cultural cities such as New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco again, which are dream destinations in every respect

Sun destination

If you go to the United States to enjoy the sun between December and March, it is interesting to note that several cities renowned for their summer weather have basketball teams. Indeed, cities in Florida such as Miami (Heat) and Orlando (Magics), Arizona such as Phoenix (Suns) and California such as Sacramento (Kings) are cities with basketball teams. We must warn you that these cities in 2019-2020 will not offer the best teams on the court.

However, the interesting thing about these destinations is that it will be easy for you to get low-cost tickets to the games. Then, what we suggest is that you look at the schedule of these teams to see if they would not receive NBA powers when you are in the region. It would not be surprising if on this occasion you could see superstars like Lebron James or big teams like Milwaukee playing while enjoying your sun destination.


You are a fan of skiing or winter sports and you like Basketball. In that case, you’re lucky since the Nuggets are one of the big teams in the NBA right now and ski resorts like Vail are internationally renowned.


The city of Al Capone delighted basketball fans in the 90s with the legendary player Michael Jordan. The myth of the famous 23 is still present and still hovers over the ceiling of the United Center. The Bulls suck, but the atmosphere is always there in this arena. In addition, the city of winds is one of the largest sports cities in America and it remains one of the largest American cities after New York and Los Angeles and you won’t get bored out of basketball.

Washington, D.C.

Washington being the American capital, it remains the historic city par excellence where American students go on pilgrimage every year to visit the Capitol, the Lincoln monument, the Potomac, etc. If you are a history and basketball enthusiast, you can add a stop on your pilgrimage to the Verizon Center to see the Wizzards in action.

Which cities and amphitheatre offer the best atmosphere?

New York

As we have already mentioned, the MSG is the most mythical sports temple in the world. What makes the specificity of NY is its unique atmosphere. The media and supporters are extremely rigorous towards their sports teams and it is a social norm that has become part of the mores of the entire New York population because, between the blue collar, the sports journalist and the Wall Street trader, there is a total osmosis to denounce and decry the setbacks of their team and excess sometimes becomes the norm.

Los Angeles

The Staples crowds are also very passionate, but they are more discreet and glamorous than NY. It is not uncommon to see many Hollywood stars like Jack Nicholson attending Lakers games. The latter has had his tickets behind the Lakers bench for over 40 years. Then, the Lakers have a great tradition as champions and star players like the Magic Johnson, Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul Jabbar Shaquille O’Neal, Kobe Bryant and now Lebron James. Their gold and purple colours are legendary and colour the crowds in an impressive and intimidating way.

Before moving on to two of our favorites, we would like to specify the particular atmosphere of Chicago where Michael Jordan’s shadow still hangs over the Bulls court. Finally, at Bankers Life Field House in Indianapolis, you will feel like you are in an American college game atmosphere.


Philadelphia is a young and talented team that should be able to win a championship in the coming years. Moreover, the city is magnificent outside basketball since it is the city that gave birth to the United States of America on July 4, 1776. This city has many historical monuments to visit. The particularity of Philadelphia, like Boston, is the passion that drives the fans. Indeed, until the early 2000s, Philadelphia was considered by athletes to be the most intimidating crowd in the United States, it was not good to show up at the old Spectrum with the opponent’s jersey. At Wells Fargo Centers, this tradition is trying to continue and brings a particular atmosphere that is hard to find in other arenas


Since the early 2000s, Boston has been unanimously recognized as a sports city par excellence in the United States. Indeed, the franchises of the 4 major American sports all won the title at least once. The NHL Bruins won the highest honours in 2011. The MLB Red Sox in 2004, 2007, 2013, 2018. The NFL Patriots in 2001 2003 2003 2004 2014 2016 2018. Finally, the Celtics, the most successful franchise in the NBA with 17 titles, won their last championship in 2008. This legendary team also has the finest floor in the NBA and ranks among the best fan base in the world, providing an unforgettable atmosphere for any sports fan. In addition, the city of Boston and New England are the cradle where the new American nation began to establish itself in America.

What are the average NBA ticket prices?

Before starting, it should be noted that average ticket prices will necessarily be more expensive in large urban centres and in cities with excellent teams, as they are more likely to play to a sold-out audience. A VIP ticket to Los Angeles and New York can easily reach $1,000,000 and even $5,000 while the same tickets in Cleveland will be around $300-500.

Briefly, according to an ESPN study, the average cost of one to watch an NBA game is around US$54 (43 euros) per ticket. At the top of the list of the most expensive teams to watch, we find the Knicks of New York where you will have to pay an average of $129 to see them in action. Then we find the Lakers at $102, the Bulls at $82 and the Miami Heat at $78. Finally, the last ones on the list, the New Orleans Pelicans, are offering to watch their game for an average of $30.

We would like to take this opportunity to remind you of the little advice we have already given you. Indeed, if you plan to travel to a particular region of the United States, you can look at team calendars and buy your tickets based on the right teams that will come to play in the city where you will be. This way, you will pay a reasonable price to see a lot of supervedettes like Lebron James, James Harden, Kahwi Leonard play for a lower cost compared to New York or LA

How to get organized to buy tickets?

To begin with, watching a basketball game of these legendary teams is not complicated. If you know your holiday dates, you can buy your tickets on Heyticket.

It is best to buy them in advance, as you will have a better selection of seats available and a greater assurance of having your ticket to the game as it is not uncommon to see teams playing sold-out. Prices will obviously fluctuate depending on the teams present and your location in the stands. Don’t worry, you can usually find places without problems depending on your budget.

Finally, for those who decide at the last minute to go to a game, you can go to the arena box office to try to buy your tickets. If this is not possible, you will still be able to buy them from resellers (scalpers) near the meeting place, but in these cases you will pay more than the normal price.

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