The Ultimate Guide for Following Sports on Twitter
By Greg Kantor
Twitter is a social networking website that allows you to create posts in the form of ‘tweets’. These tweets are short bursts (140 or less characters) of information that can literally be about anything. With regards to sports, Twitter has completely revolutionized sports reporting: breaking news about every major sport is posted instantly, and often before other media outlets (ESPN, newspapers, blogs etc.) can get the information out to the public.
Obviously, Twitter is an amazing tool for all types of sports fans, but the key is knowing how to get the most out of your Twitter account, and that’s where this guide will come in. This guide will give you the best sports accounts to follow and general tips to enhance your overall experience.
Must-Follow Accounts For Sports Fans
Disclaimer: the accounts are listed in no particular order.
- Elias Sports Bureau (@EliasSports): Your go-to account for all the interesting and weird statistics about any sport
- Darren Rovell (@darrenrovell): ESPN sports business reporter; provides a fantastic look at sports from an unique angle
- Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter): ESPN NFL insider; reports exclusively on breaking news and rumors about all NFL teams
- Buster Olney (@Buster_ESPN): ESPN the Magazine senior baseball writer; more than just news and rumors, Buster posts a daily insider blog that is free for all to read
- ESPN Stats and Info (@ESPNStatsInfo): ESPN’s twist on the Elias account; tends to tweet more general statistics
- Deadspin (@Deadspin): sports news, but often with a lot of humor
- Jim Irsay (@JimIrsay): owner of the Indianapolis Colts; gives insight into the life of an owner, but with a comedic twist
- Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie): TSN hockey insider; tweets breaking news and rumors about the NHL
- MLB Trade Rumors (@mlbtraderumors): official account for their website (MlbTradeRumors.com); reports on all types of baseball information, not just trades
- Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA): NBA columnist for Yahoo; tweets breaking news and rumors about the NBA
- Chris Mortensen (@mortreport): ESPN senior NFL analyst; tweets breaking news and rumors about the NFL
- Onion Sports Network (@OnionSports): a satirical look at all things sports from The Onion
- Jon Heyman (@JonHeymanCBS): CBSsports.com baseball writer; tweets breaking news and rumors about the MLB
- Jay Horwitz (@Jay_HorwitzPR): Public Relations Director for the Mets; behind the scenes look at the life of a PR guy; expert at butt-tweeting (follow to find out..)
- Erin Andrews (@ErinAndrews): Fox Sports Broadcaster; tweets all things college football, including interviews with top athletes
- J.A. Adande (@jadande): ESPN NBA writer; tweets exclusively about the NBA, but also responds to fans
- FanGraphs Baseball (@fangraphs): the best account for sabermetrics and the MLB (think: Moneyball)
- Eric Stangel (@EricStangel): Executive Producer/Writer for The Late Show; tweets about sports humorously, as well as the perils of rooting for the Chargers
- Peter King (@SI_PeterKing): SI senior writer; tweet about breaking news and rumors in the NFL
- Robert Raiola, CPA (@SportsTaxMan): gives an interesting look at sports, strictly from a monetary standpoint (salaries, taxes etc.)
(Staff addition: We of course cannot forget one of the funniest team accounts out there. The marketing guys over at the Los Angeles Kings organization have had some pretty good tweets over the years on their account (@LAKings). The funniest one perhaps came at the end game five of the 2013 Western Conference Finals. After losing in double overtime to the Chicago Blackhawks and officially being eliminated, the guys who run the Kings twitter account went straight to punchlines. The best being towards the then-recently eliminated Pittsburgh Penguins)
- Jose Canseco (@JoseCanseco): former MLB player; now tweets about his crazy life post-baseball
- Brandon McCarthy (@BMcCarthy32): pitcher for the Arizona Diamondbacks; constantly provides great, funny tweets about the life of a MLB player
- Mike Tyson (@MikeTyson): former boxer;tweets about his family and post-boxing endeavors
- Chad Johnson (@Ochocinco): wide receiver in the NFL, currently a free agent; tweets about his life outside of football; always interacts with fans
- Kevin Love (@kevinlove): power forward/center for the Minnesota Timberwolves; behind the scenes look at the life of an NBA player
- Paul Bissonnette (@BizNasty2point0): left winger for the Phoenix Coyotes; always tweets about his life and consistently interacts with fans
- LeBron James (@KingJames): forward for the Miami Heat; everyone knows about LeBron on the court, but his Twitter account gives us a fantastic glimpse into his family life
- Roberto Luongo (?) (@strombone1): goalie for the Vancouver Canucks (possibly); this account probably belongs to Luongo (the tweets from inside the locker room/teammates attest to that assumption), but the anonymity of the account allows Luongo to tweet freely and give opinions about everything.
- Metta World Peace (@MettaWorldPeace): forward for the New York Knicks; gives his fans a sneak peek into the life of one of the most enigmatic players ever to don a NBA uniform
- Brandon Phillips (@DatDudeBP): second basemen for the Cincinnati Reds; tweets about the life of a MLB player and consistently connects with fans
Things You Should Absolutely Know About Twitter
- Interact with other fans-Following athletes and sports writers are only half of the Twitter experience; connecting with fans that share the same favorite teams as you is the other half. Ultimately, the more fans you follow, the more discussions you’ll find yourself involved in.
- Don’t get deterred if you don’t gain a lot of followers-In the Twitter universe, followers equal popularity, but that doesn’t mean you should give up if you don’t accumulate a lot of them. Keep on tweeting!
- Use hashtags correctly-On Twitter, a hashtag is the number symbol (#) followed by a word or phrase that represents the subject of your tweet. For example: #NFL, #MLBOffSeason, and #FantasyTips are all commonly used hashtags. Hashtags let you to sort tweets by subject matter, therefore allowing others to see your tweets more effectively. The worst tweets, however, are those with excessive amounts of hashtags, or hashtags that have no real meaning. Sometimes, keeping it simple is the best way to go.
- Most importantly, have fun!-Twitter is an amazing way to connect with all types of people: athletes, ports writers, analysts, and fans. In the end, Twitter is supposed to enhance your experience as a fan, so make sure you enjoy it and take advantage of this great website!
I hope this guide will help everyone improve their experience on Twitter, and to those who don’t already have a Twitter account, the best time to sign up is now! Happy tweeting!
Greg Kantor is a senior at Plainview-Old Bethpage JFK High School. His favorite sports teams are the Mets, Jets, Islanders, and Knicks and he hopes to see his teams bring home some championships at some point in his lifetime! You can follow him on Twitter at @gkantor_18.