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Survey: do Canadian sports fans date their rivals?

Publish Date:09/27/2023
Fact checked by: Josh Miller

To what extent do Canadian sports enthusiasts place their beloved teams ahead of their romantic relationships? With the NHL season just around the corner, The Grueling Truth explored whether fellow sports fans prioritize the triumphs of their sports idols over their dating experiences. It turns out, more than 20% would choose a crucial game over a romantic date night with their partner.

We’d rather spend a night out with our sports idols

The passion for sports can set the hearts of many Canadian sports fans ablaze, even more rapidly than their affection for their partners. Our survey reveals that a substantial 34% of Canadian sports enthusiasts would choose a night out with their sports heroes over spending an evening with their (potential) partners.

Sports partners in crime

For those who thought that having a good sense of humor and a warm smile were the sole prerequisites for a partner, there might be an eye-opener. It turns out that 1 in 10 Canadian sports fans deem it essential to very important that their (future) partner shares their allegiance to the same sports team.

Ottawa Senators fans are the most passionate

When it comes to NHL fans, the Ottawa Senators’ supporters stand out with a considerable 22% looking for a partner who shares their team allegiance. Vancouver Canucks fans follow closely at 20%, with Edmonton Oilers fans at 17%, and Calgary Flames fans at 16%. Winnipeg Jets fans also place a strong emphasis on this, with 15% seeking a partner who supports their team. On the other hand, fans of the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Montreal Canadiens appear to be less concerned about this, with only 11% considering it important.

Making concessions

When questioned about their comfort level attending a sports game with their partner cheering for the opposing team, nearly 10% of respondents admitted feeling uneasy. A small but significant 3% even mentioned they would refuse to attend a match if their partner supported the rival team.

Regarding home decor and team merchandise, Canadian sports fans seem to be somewhat more flexible. Nineteen percent of respondents expressed their willingness to make adjustments to accommodate their partner’s preferences, while 61% indicated their readiness to seek a compromise. However, a notable 20% stated their reluctance to make any changes.

Methodology

In September 2023, a survey was conducted, comprising 1,237 sports enthusiasts from all over the country. They were asked about the significance of their (potential) partner sharing their sports team allegiance, their choice between spending an evening with a sports hero or their partner, their loyalty to an NHL team, and their openness to compromising on merchandise preferences. The participants consisted of 54% males, 45% females, and 1% identifying as non-binary, with an average age of 35 years. Of the respondents, 71% indicated they were currently in a relationship.

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