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Wednesday, September 5, 2012
Updated: September 6, 5:38 PM ET
No. 21: Philadelphia 76ers

By Ian Gordon
ESPN The Magazine

Last year's rank: 58
Title track: 70
Ownership: 24
Coaching: 20
Players: 33
Fan relations: 25
Affordability: 8
Stadium experience: 80
Bang for the buck: 32

Two years ago, coming off a 27-55 season, the Philadelphia 76ers found themselves near the bottom of these rankings. Since handing the keys over to the competent Doug Collins, they've redefined themselves as a tough, hardworking group. And now, after acquiring Andrew Bynum from the Lakers in the four-team Dwight Howard trade, the Sixers boast a legitimate star in the middle. Paired with a refreshingly affordable (if a little generic) game experience -- a trip to Madison Square Garden costs about two and a half times more than catching a game at Philly's Wells Fargo Center -- the Sixers have a sort of blue-collar appeal that stands in sharp contrast to flashier foes in Boston, Miami and New York. That suits Philadelphia just fine. After celebrating the 50-year anniversary of Wilt Chamberlain's 100-point game in March by dishing out 2-inch-by-2-inch pieces of the original Hershey Sports Arena floor, the 76ers will go back into nostalgia mode in 2013, 30 years after Dr. J & Co. won the team's last NBA title and 50 years after the franchise moved to Philly. If there was ever a time for fans to #ShowYaLuv (the team's Twitter-friendly motto the past two seasons), it's now.