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Twitter nets latest sports deal with expanded NBA partnership

Social media platform Twitter has signed its latest content partnership through an expanded deal with North American basketball league the NBA.

The agreement announced today (Tuesday) will bring exclusive original live programming and more video to Twitter, and its Vine and Periscope platforms.

Twitter and the NBA, through its NBA Digital partnership with US media group Turner, will deliver a free live stream of a new weekly pregame show with first-of-its-kind elements created specifically for integration with Twitter conversation.

The weekly pregame show will be featured exclusively on Twitter for both logged-in and logged-out users.  Ahead of the 2016-17 season, the NBA said it will announce an additional to-be-determined show that will also stream exclusively on Twitter.

NBA commissioner Adam Silver said: “We’ve seen technology bring fans closer to our game, teams and players in ways we could have only imagined a decade ago.  This expanded partnership will help feed our fans’ growing demand for the NBA by more deeply integrating the league across Twitter’s many platforms.”

The partnership also includes an extension of the NBA and Twitter’s Amplify program, with the league increasing its content creation across Twitter, Vine and Periscope.  NBA videos on Twitter will continue to include #NBARapidReplay highlights, #NBAVine highlights and behind-the-scenes footage, #PhantomCam player arrivals, plays of the game, animated GIFs, #NBAmixtape custom edits, “Day in the Life” takeovers and Periscope live streams of press conferences and interviews.

In addition, @NBA, the league’s official Twitter account, will also produce more videos from major events that will feature player Q&As, takeovers and behind-the-scenes access.

Since the NBA joined Twitter in 2009, the league has built the largest Twitter community of any sports league in the world with more than 22 million followers. The NBA recently became the first organisation to surpass two billion loops on Vine and, since joining the platform during the 2013 Finals, the NBA has built Vine’s largest community among all sports leagues, teams and players, with more than 1.8m followers.