The NBA is the savviest professional sports league as far as social media is concerned, and Twitter's new slate of NBA team emojis are a testament to that. By using a special hashtag relevant to their favorite team, fans can include an emoji logo for their team.
For the most part, the hashtags that accompany the NBA team emojis specifically reference some aspect of that city's NBA team. For example, the Toronto Raptors' hashtag is #WeTheNorth, after the team's motto, while the Detroit Pistons' #DetroitBasketball is a reference to the infamous chant that echoes throughout The Palace of Auburn Hills.
The NBA is well aware of the volume of conversations taking place on Twitter around its games, so the introduction of team-themed emojis is a good way to centralize discussion and bring fans together.