According to a recent social media study conducted by SportsInsider.com, LeBron James is the most hated player in the NBA.
The research used geotagged Twitter data from the last month, tracking negative mentions of NBA players, such as “I hate LeBron” or “LeBron sucks.” Over 70,000 tweets and hashtags were tracked, and the findings stated LeBron was the NBA’s most hated player in 24 different states.
For a player as polarizing as LeBron, this is hardly surprising. Over the course of his career, King James has amassed an endless array of haters. Perhaps his biggest critic, Skip Bayless, wasted no time expressing his lack of surprise at the outcome of the study.
“A national poll finds that the most hated player in the NBA is … LeBron James. No surprise here,” Bayless wrote in a tweet on Wednesday. “Can’t wait to discuss on tomorrow’s Undisputed. I’m told Shannon is out of his mind over this.”
The study arrives alongside more news, as The Athletic’s Shams Charania reports LeBron is changing his jersey number from No. 23 to No. 6 next season. Shams also notes that Anthony Davis plans on keeping his jersey number the same at No. 3.
James had hinted at switching back from No. 23, having stated that no one else should be allowed to wear the number in honor of Michael Jordan. James will go back to No. 6 after the release of Space Jam: A New Legacy on July 16.