Last week’s NBA trade deadline scrambled the league’s balance of power, with major trades for stars like Kevin Durant, Mo Bamba, Kyrie Irving, Patrick Beverly, and more. After the significant reshuffling, the NBA’s best performers this season will ascend to Salt Lake City for the 2023 All-Star Weekend from February 17-19.
CivicScience wanted to gauge the interest of U.S. adults ahead of the All-Star Game and see if the active trade deadline has heightened intent to watch the remainder of this NBA season. According to the most recent data, 20% of U.S. adults intend to watch the All-Star Game on Sunday night – with 7% claiming they ‘definitely will.’
Gen Z adults are more than twice as likely as the Gen Pop to say they ‘definitely will’ watch the All-Star Game (16%). White adults are significantly less likely to say they ‘definitely will’ watch the game (just 4%) compared to Black (21%) and Hispanic or Latino (16%) adults.
Among NBA fans only, 21% report they’re ‘more likely’ to watch the remainder of the season following the busy trade deadline, but 28% of fans – potentially of teams who sold off their stars – are clocking in as ‘less likely’ to watch. A slim majority are unchanged in their interest.
CivicScience also polled NBA fans to see which of today’s leading stars is their favorite. Right on the heels of breaking the NBA all-time scoring record, LeBron James is still king among NBA fans, with 35% claiming they view him most favorably. Steph Curry follows at 25%, with recent two-time MVP winner Giannis Antetokounmpo in third at 12%. (Notice Curry trails LeBron by a much tighter margin than when CivicScience asked who the ‘stronger player’ is immediately following the Cavs’ miraculous 2016 NBA Finals comeback.) After winning the last two MVP trophies and finding himself heavily in contention for a third this season, Nikola Jokić is just ahead of Kevin Durant in the favorability wars at 10% and 9%, respectively – which goes to show how much the former has established himself in recent years.
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