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  • Writer's pictureDenis Green


The English report is available to download here

Now in its fourth year, the Mailman NBA Red Card is a comprehensive assessment on the digital performance of NBA teams, players, and legends throughout the year. The report also provides a guide to broader NBA digital trends, interests, and insights.

The Winners:

  1. Los Angeles Lakers are the most popular NBA team online in China

  2. Stephen Curry is the most popular current NBA player online in China

  3. Dwyane Wade is the most popular NBA Legend online in China

The NBA Red Card 2020 report measures the influence of the NBA teams, players, and legends online in China across seven different metrics on Weibo and Douyin.

Most Popular NBA Teams Online in China:

  1. Los Angeles Lakers

  2. Golden State Warriors

  3. Houston Rockets

  4. Miami Heat

  5. Brooklyn Nets

The Los Angeles Lakers were dominant, leading in every performance metric except Weibo Total Followers, ranking #2. The Lakers grew 2.27M followers on Weibo, 34% higher than any other team, and engagement increased by 385% year over year. This can be attributed to their star-power, on-court success, and a dedicated community strategy that helped establish ‘Lakers Nation’ in China.

Most Popular NBA Players Online in China:

  1. Stephen Curry

  2. Dwight Howard

  3. Derrick Rose (joint 3rd)

  4. Klay Thompson (joint 3rd)

  5. PJ Tucker

Curry never hesitated to send best wishes to fans in China, whether it was in a time of need during COVID-19, or a time of celebration for Chinese New Year. Even though the concepts are simple, these efforts show Curry cares for China, and has taken him to the pinnacle of NBA players.

Most Popular ​NBA Legends Online in China:

  1. Dwyane Wade

  2. Stephon Marbury

  3. Nick Young

On Weibo, many of Wadeʼs most popular posts were not about himself, but focused on relatable topics that he could speak about from experience - such as anecdotes from playing with LeBron James and against Kobe Bryant. Wadeʼs strong following in China is reinforced by his partnership with Li-Ning, a Chinese sports apparel brand.

Report​ ​Methodology

The NBA teams, players and legends were assessed across the following metrics:

1. Weibo followers

2. Weibo follower growth

3. Weibo total engagement

4. Weibo average engagement

5. Douyin followers

6. Douyin total engagement

7. Douyin average engagement.

The data was collected from October 23rd, 2019 - October 13th, 2020

The full methodology is available upon request.

About​ ​Mailman

Mailman is a leading sports digital agency and consultancy. Through rich digital marketing, social media strategy, production and ecommerce, we help the world’s leading sports brands build audiences and a sustainable business in China.

Contact​ ​Information:

Denis Green

+86 16602182243

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