A Study Found That NBA Players Who Use Twitter Late At Night Played Worse The Next Day

Getty Image

Little good can ever come from Twitter, let alone late-night Twitter. Unless you’re all watching a wild late-night college football game or overtime playoff hockey, you’re probably up to no good on social media after most people go to bed.

And one study seems to have proven that’s especially true for NBA players. Stony Brook researchers published a study that indicated players who spent time on Twitter late at night before a game actually performed worse the next day, likely because of sleep deprivation. According to Sports Illustrated, researchers at Stony Brook studied basketball players they found on social media the night before a game and then studied how they performed compared to nights when they were apparently not logged on.

Stony Brook’s research is the first of its kind to present time-dependent findings, providing the clearest evidence of a performance penalty following nocturnal tweeting activity, between 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m. local time. The study analyzed 112 players’ tweets from 2009-2016, filtering 581,190 posts into a dataset of 37,073 late-night messages. After scraping in-game statistics from Yahoo Sports’ website, Stony Brook’s evaluation determined players score 1.14 fewer points and play 2 fewer minutes in games following late-night tweeting, as opposed to games not following late-night tweeting.

If you’re not following exactly how the players were impacted, the easiest way to put it is that they shot poorly and inevitably played less.

The biggest effect appears in shooting efficiency. On average, the 112 players shooting percentages tickets 1.7% points lower in games following late-night Twitter activity, a decline from 45.35% to 43.65%. Even worse, when players tweeted between the hours of 2 a.m. and 6 a.m., shooting success rate dropped a staggering 3.6% overall.

The doctors that run the study claim that athletes need to take sleep and their recovery seriously. It’s something that’s often overlooked when it comes to performance, but the body needs to rest to properly recover. Still, don’t count Patrick Beverley as someone who believes there’s a correlation to sleep and performance in the NBA.

“Hey man, next thing you know, if you don’t jump over a cat three days before the game, you ain’t gonna make two layups,” he said according to Sports Illustrated.

That kind of sounds like a quote from a time when people didn’t think sharks could attack humans or the humors controlled whether people were healthy or not, but it is funny. The science, however, seems to suggest he should take sleeping a bit more seriously.

(via Sports Illustrated)