LeBron James is one of the most accomplished and admired athletes in all of sports. With that comes plenty of hate, and no one gets more of it online than the four-time NBA Champion.
Pickswise looked to prove as much. After collecting 12 months of tweets directed at stars across sports, it says that LeBron gets far and away the most hate and trolling on Twitter.
In total, 122,568 “abusive messages” were sent in LeBron’s direction between June 2020 and June 2021. That number is significantly higher than the second-highest total, which was towards Manchester United’s Marcus Rashford, with 32,328.
Tom Brady came in third and led the NFL with 28,151. Kevin Durant, a second NBA star who lives to go back-and-forth with fans on twitter, came in at No. 4 with 24,370. NASCAR’s Bubba Wallace rounds out the top-five with 21,750.
“The data was collected directly from Twitter from the past 12 months (June 2020 – June 2021). Messages containing words, phrases and hashtags that were known abusive terms were logged against each player and the respective sport they play/ played in.
“More than 500,000 abusive messages were analysed across 75 current or former athletes.”
Damian Lillard, Trevor Bauer, Cristiano Ronaldo, Stephen Curry, and Mesut Ozil rounded out the Top 10. Pickswise also examined anti-LGBTQ tweets. LeBron James, who is not a member of that community, also received the highest number of abusive messages in that category, at 1,628. Neymar, Ronaldo, Megan Rapinoe, and Justin Thomas were also in that top five.
Hopefully all of these numbers start drop over the next year. Friendly trash talk is certainly a part of sports, but far too many fans take things to a disgusting level.