An update on my quest to visit every MLB, NFL, NBA and NHL stadium: The finish line’s in sight!

Stadium milepost

A stated goal of mine since adolescence — and, indeed, a big reason why I started Itinerant Fan in the first place — was to visit every current stadium in the four major U.S. sports leagues: the NFL, NBA, NHL and MLB.

It’s a pursuit that usually takes folks many years. I’ve been at it for more than 20 years and still have not completed it.

But I’m getting close to becoming a member of what a fellow sports travel blogger has dubbed “Club 124” — the number signifies the total of teams across the four sports leagues.

If I squint hard enough, I can see the finish line. And I’ve ramped up my efforts over the last couple years to get ever closer.

Motivated quite a bit by the pandemic and the lost time it caused, I set about in mid-2021 to focus my sports travel efforts on getting to as many new venues as I could knock off in a reasonable manner.

My first post-pandemic trip closed a circle: By watching a game at Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas, I again finished my list of the 30 current major-league ballparks (remember, the Rangers opened their new park in 2020 when fans were mostly barred from attending games).

I’ve made several strategic trips over the nearly three years since in an effort to visit new stadiums in an efficient manner.

As of this writing in May 2024, I have seen a home game for 113 out of the 124 teams in MLB/NFL/NBA/NHL. I have had the entire list for MLB and the NHL under my belt for a couple years now, but that will change by next season thanks to two franchise relocations.

When the NHL’s new Utah team begins play next fall, I’ll be paying a visit to the Delta Center in Salt Lake City as quickly as I can.

And in April 2025, a new MLB season will open with the current Oakland A’s playing at Sutter Health Park, a Triple-A stadium located just outside Sacramento. As a former Sacramento-area resident, I have seen several games at that venue, but will be sure to visit again for some major-league action.

My objective is to join Club 124 by the spring of 2025. Will I get there? I don’t know yet, but I’ll have plenty of fun trying!

Keep reading for an update on my status at the moment. I’ll be waiting with bated breath for the 2024 NFL and NBA schedules to come out so I can work on completing my list.

Note: For my own purposes, I do not count a team unless I specifically see it in a home game at its stadium. For example, I have now been to several Chargers games at SoFi Stadium, but I will not count the Rams until I see a Rams game there.

Also, if the whole idea of Club 124 intrigues you, check out the site of the man who coined the term, Sean MacDonald.

View of the field at Citizens Bank Park during a Philadelphia Phillies game

MLB: 30/30!

Completed: ARI, ATL, BAL, BOS, CHC, CHW, CIN, CLE, COL, DET, HOU, KC, LAA, LAD, MIA, MIL, MIN, NYM, NYY, OAK, PHI, PIT, SEA, SD, SF, STL, TB, TEX, TOR, WAS

Remaining: None

I first reached 30-for-30 status in MLB in 2015, and since then have tried to fill in new ballparks (in Atlanta and Texas) as soon as I could after they opened. As mentioned above, when the A’s move in 2025 to Sacramento — intended to be a temporary stop before their expected permanent relocation to Las Vegas in 2028 — I’ll be visiting as soon as I can.

In the meantime, I’ll spend the 2024 season paying visits to a few ballparks that I haven’t seen in a number of years. I already kicked things off by watching a game at Arizona’s Chase Field — check out our updated guide!

View of the field from the southwest corner at Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, California

NFL: 27/32

Completed: ARI, BAL, BUF, CAR, CHI, CIN, CLE, DAL, DEN, DET, GB, HOU, IND, JAX, LAC, LV, MIN, NE, NO, NYJ, PHI, PIT, SEA, SF, TB, TEN, WAS

Remaining: ATL, KC, LAR, MIA, NYG

The NFL, of course, is the toughest league to cover every stadium for because there are so few games each year compared to the other leagues, plus it’s difficult to get to more than one game in a single trip. But I did get a little bit closer by visiting three new stadiums in 2023: San Francisco, Jacksonville and Cleveland.

This coming season, I’ll definitely try to knock off low-hanging fruit in the Rams at SoFi Stadium. The rest of the stadiums left on my list are sort of scattered about the country, but I’m determined to complete this list before the end of 2024.

View of the court at Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse in Cleveland

 

NBA: 26/30

Completed: ATL, BKN, BOS, CHA, CHI, CLE, DEN, GS, HOU, IND, LAL, MEM, MIA, MIL, MIN, NO, NYK, OKC, ORL, PHI, PHX, POR, SA, SAC, TOR, UTA

Remaining: DAL, DET, LAC, WAS

I’ll admit that of the four leagues, the NBA is the lowest priority for me — thus it has the lowest number at the moment. But I’ve always been intrigued by the NBA’s unique challenge of traveling to markets not represented in the other leagues, and visits to places like Oklahoma City and San Antonio have been some of my favorite sports travel journeys in recent years.

I’ve slowly chipped away at my remaining NBA list, knocking off Cleveland’s Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse and Orlando’s Kia Center this past season. That leaves me with four venues to visit next season.

That includes the L.A. Clippers’ brand new Intuit Dome, but it’s not an addition to my list since believe it or not, I never saw a Clips game during their 20-plus year tenure at Crypto.com Arena despite living in Southern California. The new place looks really cool, though, so you can bet I won’t be waiting two decades to see it.

View of the rink at PPG Paints Arena during a Pittsburgh Penguins game

 

NHL: 32/32!

Completed: ANA, ARI, BOS, BUF, CAR, CGY, CHI, CLB, COL, DAL, DET, EDM, FLA, LA, MIN, MTL, NSH, NJ, NYI, NYR, OTT, PHI, PIT, SJ, SEA, STL, TB, TOR, VAN, VGK, WAS, WPG

Remaining: None

Hockey is hands-down my favorite sport, so it’s no surprise that this is the second league that I’ve completed!

This past season was a stress-free one for me, as I didn’t have any new arenas to visit (though I did do a couple revisits, to Colorado’s Ball Arena and Pittsburgh’s PPG Paints Arena). However, with the Arizona Coyotes franchise’s move to Utah, Mullett Arena comes off my list and I’ll have to head to Salt Lake City next fall.

Whether my league lists are complete or not, it hasn’t affected my desire to travel and see games in the slightest. I’m looking forward to hitting the road again soon.

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Scott Bell
Scott Bell
1 year ago

Congrats on your quest!!!! I am also working on this- and I am down to 10 (NHL-Edmonton, LA, San Jose) (NBA- GS, SAC, Den, OKC, HOU, TOT, Charlotte) I am trying to finish by spring of 2023- I have 5 planned this fall Good Luck!!!!

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Amil D
Amil D
1 year ago

You are forgetting one major sports league. MLS. Why not add it to your schedule?

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