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In Times survey, Brooklyn is home of the Nets ... but barely

Alex Trautwig

You can look at the New York Times survey of NBA fans in a number of ways, if you're a Nets fan or a Nets executive.

On one hand, there are only a few zipcodes in the United States of America where the team is the most popular, based on Facebook likes: the seven zipcodes that make hipster belt near Barclays Center plus Bedford-Stuyvesant and the Canarsie section of Brooklyn, to the southeast. The zipcode where the Nets are most popular is 11215, basically  the Park Slope neighborhood in Brooklyn. It's 26 percent for the Nets, 21 percent for the Knicks and eight percent for the Lakers.

The Nets also are the only team in the NBA to be the most popular in only one U.S. county BUT that county is Kings County, aka Brooklyn, the nation's eighth most populous. And as everyone who's ever read a Nets promotional brochure during the long trek to Brooklyn, the borough would be the fourth largest city in the US if it were a city unto itself. The survey shows that Nets fans (barely) outnumber Knicks fans in Brooklyn, 22 to 21 percent. Wonder what that number might have been two years ago, before the Nets moved from New Jersey? The Nets training facility remains in East Rutherford, which is 25 to 15 Knick territory. The home of the Nets new training facility, Sunset Park, is barely Knicks territory by a 27 to 25 margin. That will change.

What also must be gratifying to Nets executives is the rising interest in the team along Manhattan's East Side and Financial District. The Financial District, zipcode 10004, is home to a lot of young people. While the Knicks still can boast, they're favored by 26 percent of fans, the Nets are favored by 20 percent. That's the highest percentage in Manhattan.

There are other fun facts that can be derived from the survey. The Lakers and Heat are quite popular in Brooklyn and in other parts of the New York area. The Heat are popular in Bed-Stuy, for example, with about 10 percent of the fans, and the Lakers dominate Newark, home of the Prudential Center.  No other team has any significant fan base.