The collision of two-time reigning MVP Stephen Curry and the 73-win Golden State Warriors with NBA-Finals mainstay LeBron James has led to some gaudy viewership numbers over the last two weeks. This year’s NBA Finals are the second-most watched Finals through four games, averaging nearly 18 million viewers per game up to this point. While that may seem like an incredible audience, the people following the action on ABC pales in comparison to the amount of people following the teams and players on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.
The Warriors digital team is considered by many to be among the top in the league, as evidenced by Complex ranking their Twitter account (@warriors) fifth in the NBA. It’s paid off in terms of impressions, too, with 14.1 million followers across Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
The Cavaliers, in comparison, have just over nine million followers of their team accounts on those media.
Far more powerful than the teams on social media are the players, and that’s where the Cavaliers have the edge. The Warriors 15-man roster has a combined 36.2 million followers on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Stephen Curry leads them with 21.4 million.
The Cavaliers’ players have 98.4 million followers across their social platforms led by LeBron James’ NBA-leading 75.3 million followers.
Thus, NBA following on social media is similar to play on the court – it’s driven by the stars.