Major League Soccer has passed the NHL and NBA to have the third highest per-game attendance among American professional sports, according to the Huffington Post.
In 2011 the average attendance for MLS games was 17,870, an all-time high for the relatively young professional soccer league. In 2011, the NBA recorded 17,319 attendees per game, and the NHL recorded 17,126 attendees per contest.
"It's historic for us -- we exceeded our best with 18 teams, and we only had 10 back (in 1996)," said MLS President Mark Abbott to reporters. "We have Montreal joining next year, and we believe that we will have a very positive story in that market as well." Currently the MLS trails the MLB and the NFL in terms of per game attendance. The NFL averaged 66,960 in 2011, and the MLB averaged 30,352. NFL stadiums and MLB stadiums, however, tend to provide more seats than NHL, NBA, and MLS arenas.