Sports fans get game day-ready with team apparel and other accessories from the fan shop. Soccer aficionados and football enthusiasts alike feel part of their favorite teams wearing replica jerseys. Before heading to the game, spectators get revved up with tailgating gear set up on the stadium lawn or parking lot. So, fire up your grills, grab your team’s fan gear and enjoy the game.
National Football League (NFL)
Diverged from rugby and soccer, modern football was first played at the Rutgers-Princeton intercollegiate game in 1869. Yale graduate Walter Camp, known as the Father of American Football, pioneered the sport after writing the first official rules in the 1880s. Outside of collegiate play, professional football spread nationwide as athletic clubs established leagues. First called the American Professional Football Association, the NFL formed in the 1920s with 18 teams and the rest is history.
National Basketball Association (NBA)
In 1891, the game of basketball was conceived after Dr. James Naismith nailed peach baskets on opposing sides of a Massachusetts gym. Little did Naismith know that basketball would gain popularity after the first official game in 1892. Professional teams were founded nationwide, such as the “fathers of basketball,” the Original Celtics. Other teams formed leagues including the Basketball Association of America and National Basketball League—which eventually merged to form the NBA in 1949.
National Hockey League (NHL)
Today’s ice hockey was first played in cities across Quebec during the 1800s. After the first indoor hockey game in Montreal in 1875, professional leagues were established by 1900. Five franchises—the Montreal Canadiens, Montreal Wanderers, Ottawa Senators, Quebec Bulldogs and Toronto Arenas—came together in 1917 to form the NHL. First exclusive to Canadian teams, the NHL granted a franchise to the Boston Bruins in 1924. The New England team hosted the first US NHL game and proved itself as the flagship for future American ice hockey teams.
Major League Baseball (MLB)
First played as a variation of the British game rounders, baseball became standardized after Alexander Cartwright wrote its official rules in 1845. Before the American Civil War, baseball gained popularity in the U.S. after the first game—Cartwright’s New York Knickerbockers team versus the New York Baseball Club in New Jersey. Over the years, the “National Pastime” grew popular nationwide and formed organizations including the National and American Leagues. These two leagues exist today under the MLB organization and play each other at the World’s Series.
Major League Soccer (MLS) Branching off of rugby, soccer originated during the 1860’s on British campuses. The sport’s popularity quickly spread throughout the United Kingdom—and eventually worldwide. With a global reach, soccer leagues came together in 1904 to play under one organization, the Federal Internationale de Football Association (FIFA). After bidding to host the FIFA World Cup in 1994, the United States Soccer Federation pledged to create a Division 1 professional soccer league, known as MLS. First played with 10 teams, MLS brought the international love of soccer to American soil.
Root for your favorite team decked out in fan shop apparel and accessories including hats, starter jackets, scarfs and t-shirts.