NBA TV announced today that New York Knicks guard Jeremy Lin is the recipient of the first-ever “Social Breakout Player of the Year” Award for his increase in popularity with fans across Twitter and Facebook this season. “Linsanity” took off this season with clutch performances down the final stretch of games, becoming the first NBA player to score at least 20 points and recording seven assists in each of his first five starts, and his play sparked a Knicks turnaround prior to his season-ending injury.
This is the only award which will be presented prior to NBA TV’s telecast of the inaugural NBA Social Media Awards airing Wednesday, June 20, at 9 p.m. ET. The remaining winners will be announced during the live show – hosted by Rick Fox (@rickafox), along with social media mavens Shaquille O’Neal (@SHAQ) and Lang Whitaker (@langwhitaker), and contributions from The Basketball Jones’ JE Skeets (@jeskeets) and Tas Melas (@tasmelas) – which recognizes some of the best moments from the 2011-12 NBA regular season which resonated with fans and generated the most social engagement.
Fans have until 6 p.m. (ET) on June 18 to vote for their favorites this season by visiting nba.com/sma or by voting via Twitter (twitter.com/nbatv), Facebook (facebook.com/nbatv) and mobile. Voting for The Social Slam Award will remain open during the show with the winner announced live.
The NBA Social Media Awards will be divided into various categories recognizing social activity across Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and more. Sample categories include:
The BIG (Best In the Game) Award – for the player that best utilizes social media across platforms.
The LOL (Laugh out Loud) Award – for the team/players who had the most shared/liked blooper video during the regular season.
The Social SLAM Award – for the favorite dunk during regular season voted on by the fans.
The FanNation Award – for the team that measures the highest increase in fans and followers.
The NBA continues to be a leader in embracing social media with the official NBA league, team and player pages accumulating more than 277 million followers and likes across Twitter and Facebook, more than any other professional sports league.
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