Which NBA Teams Have Seen the Most Growth on Twitter and Facebook?

New York Knicks - Madison Square GardenLast year I did a couple of posts on the reach and engagement of NBA teams on Twitter and Facebook. Yesterday Yago Colás came across one and shared it with the students in his Cultures of Basketball course.

The students thought it was an interesting concept and one of them, Blake McLimans, pulled updated numbers for all of the teams.

Since it has been a year since my original post I thought I’d use Blake’s figures to look at the growth percentages for all of the teams.

These figures are accurate as of January, 26, 2011.


First the official Twitter profiles. Here are the most followed NBA teams as of yesterday:

  Twitter followers
January 2011
Twitter followers
January 2010
1Los Angeles Lakers1,781,7631,415,87126%
2Orlando Magic1,038,079983,2326%
3Boston Celtics113,82025,605345%
4Miami Heat94,58113,870582%
5Chicago Bulls70,41526,161169%
6Cleveland Cavaliers59,98833,44579%
7New York Knicks55,47914,395285%
8Phoenix Suns51,47321,896135%
9San Antonio Spurs44,12319,901122%
10Denver Nuggets37,91815,188150%
11Houston Rockets37,05220,19583%
12Dallas Mavericks33,67815,817113%
13Utah Jazz29,19411,785148%
14New Jersey Nets28,9634,945486%
15Oklahoma City Thunder27,4178,911208%
16Los Angeles Clippers26,16713,53193%
17Portland Trail Blazers25,79314,68476%
18Toronto Raptors24,2265,605332%
19Philadelphia 76ers23,66712,04896%
20Detroit Pistons21,3039,537123%
21New Orleans Hornets20,7008,459145%
22Sacramento Kings20,60010,79891%
23Washington Wizards19,5716,787188%
24Milwaukee Bucks18,8977,089167%
25Golden State Warriors18,4962,655597%
26Atlanta Hawks18,4688,170126%
27Memphis Grizzlies18,4037,062161%
28Indiana Pacers17,3497,204141%
29Charlotte Bobcats16,5715,502201%
30Minnesota Timberwolves15,0286,554129%

A year later the Lakers and Magic are still the top two teams. Boston moves up a spot to #3 and not surprisingly the Heat jump from #15 to #5.

Here are the NBA Twitter profiles ranked by percentage increase since last year:

  Twitter followers
January 2011
Twitter followers
January 2010
Golden State Warriors18,4962,655597%
2Miami Heat94,58113,870582%
3New Jersey Nets28,9634,945486%
4Boston Celtics113,82025,605345%
5Toronto Raptors24,2265,605332%
6New York Knicks55,47914,395285%
7Oklahoma City Thunder27,4178,911208%
8Charlotte Bobcats16,5715,502201%
9Washington Wizards19,5716,787188%
10Chicago Bulls70,41526,161169%
11Milwaukee Bucks18,8977,089167%
12Memphis Grizzlies18,4037,062161%
13Denver Nuggets37,91815,188150%
14Utah Jazz29,19411,785148%
15New Orleans Hornets20,7008,459145%
16Indiana Pacers17,3497,204141%
17Phoenix Suns51,47321,896135%
18Minnesota Timberwolves15,0286,554129%
19Atlanta Hawks18,4688,170126%
20Detroit Pistons21,3039,537123%
21San Antonio Spurs44,12319,901122%
22Dallas Mavericks33,67815,817113%
23Philadelphia 76ers23,66712,04896%
24Los Angeles Clippers26,16713,53193%
25Sacramento Kings20,60010,79891%
26Houston Rockets37,05220,19583%
27Cleveland Cavaliers59,98833,44579%
28Portland Trail Blazers25,79314,68476%
29Los Angeles Lakers1,781,7631,415,87126%
30Orlando Magic1,038,079983,2326%

I figured Miami and would have the highest growth percentage and they almost do, coming in 2nd with a massive 582% increase. Golden State has actually seen the most growth, but despite a 597% increase they are still #26 in total followers.


As for Facebook, here are the most popular official team pages:

  Facebook likes
January 2011
Facebook likes
January 2010
1Los Angeles Lakers5,613,821657,00726%
2Boston Celtics2,921,415481,879345%
3Chicago Bulls1,082,236155,827169%
4Miami Heat1,080,032599582%
5Cleveland Cavaliers593,569166,02179%
6Orlando Magic540,17085,2656%
7Denver Nuggets422,63387,300384%
8Dallas Mavericks420,24172,015113%
9San Antonio Spurs390,09090,550122%
10New York Knicks381,54543,972285%
11Phoenix Suns301,63664,976135%
12Oklahoma City Thunder237,69910,981208%
13Houston Rockets228,74481,53583%
14Portland Trail Blazers200,22365,80176%
15Utah Jazz180,52944,328148%
16Toronto Raptors164,27641,611332%
17Golden State Warriors151,16927,826597%
18Milwaukee Bucks106,58237,197167%
19Sacramento Kings87,02619,85591%
20Philadelphia 76ers81,53517,87796%
21Atlanta Hawks69,65911,893126%
22Detroit Pistons63,8517,854123%
23Indiana Pacers59,08314,760141%
24New Jersey Nets59,04610,361486%
25Minnesota Timberwolves53,71510,742129%
26Charlotte Bobcats43,3157,281201%
27Los Angeles Clippers43,1317,29193%
28Washington Wizards41,84413,579188%
29Memphis Grizzlies39,0436,793161%
30New Orleans Hornets27,5421,647145%

One year on the Lakers and Celtics still have the most likes. The Bulls move up to #3 and the Heat jump from having the fewest likes of any team last year to being #4. The Cavs are hanging in there at #5 so there hasn’t been much abandonment by the fan base.

Here are the NBA team pages ranked by percentage increase since last year:

  Facebook likes
January 2011
Facebook likes
January 2010
1Miami Heat1,080,032599180206%
2Oklahoma City Thunder237,69910,9812065%
3New Orleans Hornets27,5421,6471572%
4New York Knicks381,54543,972768%
5Los Angeles Lakers5,613,821657,007754%
6Detroit Pistons63,8517,854713%
7Chicago Bulls1,082,236155,827595%
8Orlando Magic540,17085,265534%
9Boston Celtics2,921,415481,879506%
10Charlotte Bobcats43,3157,281495%
11Los Angeles Clippers43,1317,291492%
12Atlanta Hawks69,65911,893486%
13Dallas Mavericks420,24172,015484%
14Memphis Grizzlies39,0436,793475%
15New Jersey Nets59,04610,361470%
16Golden State Warriors151,16927,826443%
17Minnesota Timberwolves53,71510,742400%
18Denver Nuggets422,63387,300384%
19Phoenix Suns301,63664,976364%
20Philadelphia 76ers81,53517,877356%
21Sacramento Kings87,02619,855338%
22San Antonio Spurs390,09090,550331%
23Utah Jazz180,52944,328307%
24Indiana Pacers59,08314,760300%
25Toronto Raptors164,27641,611295%
26Cleveland Cavaliers593,569166,021258%
27Washington Wizards41,84413,579208%
28Portland Trail Blazers200,22365,801204%
29Milwaukee Bucks106,58237,197187%
30Houston Rockets228,74481,535181%

It’s no surprise that the Heat have seen the most growth. Since their official team page had only 599 likes at this time last year their jump to over a million likes brings with it a crazy percentage increase. Oklahoma City and New Orleans also saw very high growth.

Nearly all the teams saw greater growth on Facebook than Twitter which also makes sense given Facebook’s much large user base.

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