According to a new survey by Reality Check Insights, people do not think about the NBA as a sporting organization, but as a political organization.
“People are not even thinking about the NBA as a sport anymore,’’ said Ben Leff, CEO of Reality Check Insights, as reported by Outkick.com. “They’re literally evaluating it as an overt political thing.’’
As professional sports teams and leagues have taken to using their formerly massive viewerships as platforms to advocate for “social justice” reforms, there has been a move among Americans away from watching pro-sports.
Since the 2016 presidential election, around the time when the “knee-taking” began, the NFL has experienced a 14% decrease in their ratings, according to NBC Sports. A similar trend has enveloped the other pro-sports leagues that have embraced the social justice message, including the NBA.
According to the OutKick, “Leff’s study was not about sports. His company, which he describes as non-partisan, polled roughly 1,400 people in the U.S. about race and policing. They asked about the NBA because the league’s social justice messaging was related to the issue.”
“The results showed that 67.1 percent of Democrats think favorably or very favorably about the NBA, while 75.9 percent of Republicans think unfavorably or very unfavorably,” said Outkick.
The survey also showed that “just 12.8 percent of Republicans described themselves as thinking favorably or better about the NBA, and a similar 12.5 percent said they think favorably of Black Lives Matter.”
The survey suggests “that the image of the NBA has changed into that of a political organization that plays basketball on the side,” said Outkick.