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Turner Sports to Integrate Twitter Into NBA Playoff Coverage

Apr 9, 2009 – 3:40 AM
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Nate Jones

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Another day, another NBA Twitter story. This time, it's not a story about a player on Twitter, but the league and its broadcast partners utilizing Twitter to promote this year's NBA playoffs. According to a report on Mashable.com on Wednesday, Turner Sports (TNT and NBA TV) plans to have its team of commentators start tweeting throughout the playoffs.

I know what you're thinking ... Charles Barkley on Twitter. Well, not quite. Kenny Smith, Craig Sager and Ernie Johnson will all be tweeting, but there's no mention of the the Chuckster on the list of Turner personalities getting Twitter accounts. Turrable!

The Mashable report notes that the Turner commentators' tweets will also be integrated into a NBA on TNT Facebook fan page. The Facebook integration is nice and all, but to really make an impact the Turner team is going to need to figure out away to integrate Twitter into their broadcasts.

ESPN's Lisa Salters did an excellent job tweeting from the arena during an NBA on ABC broadcast this Sunday. Throughout the broadcast, she would give the viewers an update of what fans were tweeting about. On Twitter, she would give her followers updates on what was going on in the arena during the game.

It will be interesting to see how this promotion turns out for Turner. But more than anything, it's just cool to see how much the NBA -- its players, teams, and broadcast partners -- have embraced Twitter. I think this embrace has allowed Twitter to gain a ton of traction (say thank you to @The_Real_Shaq, Twitter investors), and also allowed the NBA to get tons of publicity (Tweeting from the locker room became national news). Let's see if both entities can continue to benefit from this unexpectedly awesome relationship.
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