Editor's note: This is an extended version of a story that appears in ESPN The Magazine's March 4 Analytics issue. It is part of an ongoing collaboration between Klout and ESPN to highlight athletes with surprising social media influence. Subscribe to ESPN The Magazine and check out the Playbook Tech blog for additional content driven by Klout.
Coyotes left winger Paul Bissonnette doesn't put up big numbers on the ice, but he's a force on social media, where his controversial sense of humor and prolific Instagram output generate a Klout score* on par with Shaq's. BizNasty explains why he always seems to have one skate in the Twitter penalty box.
Klout topics (his passions and areas of expertise): Hockey, sunglasses, Las Vegas.
Your Klout score is high for an NHLer, especially for an enforcer. What's your trick?
I like to joke around and make fun of people or lift them up. My score would probably be higher if I interacted with fans more.
Why don't you interact more?
Because they're always insulting me -- and I insult them back. But I don't like clogging people's timelines. The person you reply to is thrilled you answered them, but nobody else cares. I'm about quality over quantity.
Where do you think the vitriol comes from?
It’s mostly just people looking for a retweet, and sometimes they’re just being an a------. You should go to my timeline and see some of the s--- that they tweet. I don’t know, man, people are f----- up.
Does some of it have to do with guys trying to prove their mettle against a tough hockey player?
I honestly don’t know. I’d ask you this question: Would you insult an NFL player on Twitter because he had a bad game?
No, but I’m a chicken s---.
Right. No offense to you, but you couldn’t in a million years play in the NFL. You don’t know what that’s like. It’s like people who attack Kim Kardashian with, “You’re a slut who’s famous because of a sex tape.” Who cares? I don’t have the time in my day to show a Kardashian hate.
What's your goal with social media?
To show fans my personality. People wonder why more athletes aren't more open. I'll tell you why: because half the people tweet that I'm a f--. It's one homophobic slur after another. Sidney Crosby won't get on Twitter because he knows he'll have half of Philly calling him every name in the book.
What's Instagram's draw for you?
I like how the images speak for themselves. You don't have to comment. It's easier to get your joke across. For my [profile pic], I use a funny photo, like my NHL draft photo, where I look like an idiot. I woke up late for the draft, so I didn't have time to gel my hair. I had a total 'fro.
You're known for your "bum" photos. What's your fascination?
I see a lot of passed-out people. I think it's funny they get so drunk in public that they'll pass out in a public place and think it's normal. I don't understand it. How does a grown man drink enough to get to that stage? Don't you know your limits?
You got in trouble for tweets about female comediennes, among other things. What’s the tweet you most regret?
Jeez, I don’t even know. I think the point I was trying to make with that one was that a lot of girls aren’t funny. I don’t mean to be sexist. I just find men to be a lot funnier than women, as a whole. Of course, you know what girls are going say to that -- “Well, he hasn’t met me yet!”
Which is most true of Instagram filters: A.) I got 'em figured out, or B.) I wish they would die a slow, painful death?
I don’t mind them. Sometimes I’ll throw a filter on that. If I’m pale enough to where I look sick, I’ll throw some color on there. Or I’ll do whatever makes my nose look smaller.
What’s an online pet peeve for you?
Food pictures. We get it. You eat healthy. Or, how about a person posting a pic of themselves at the gym? Yeah, man, we get it: you work out, and then you’ll eat a kale salad. Holy f---, get a grip.
I can’t stand the self-portraits.
You know, I don’t mind modeling pictures, but I can’t stand “the duck face.” They’ll try to cover it up by calling it a “kissy face.” The moment someone does the duck face, I’ll usually stop following her. It irks me that bad.
LOL or HAHA?
I’m a Haha guy. The only time I use LOL is when a girl I’m texting with is trying to be funny, so I’ll toss an LOL at the end to make her feel good. But if one of my buddies sent me an LOL, I’d spike my phone.
Fill in the blank: Through social media, I've become friends with _______.
Jenny Johnson, the comedian. We communicate on Twitter. She’s the one who got in the argument with Chris Brown because she called him out for being a loser. Which he is. He’s a piece of s---, and not just because he hit Rihanna. He was cutting out on his community service hours and on a private jet to Cancun or something.
Your parents are often the butt of your jokes. You once tweeted that your father has the body of a milk bag. I take it Dad doesn’t follow you?
Actually, my parents follow me. They love joking around. They rip themselves. They’re good sports. I got a lot of my personality and humor from them.
You shut down your first Twitter account. Why?
When [Ilya Kovalchuk] had his contract rejected, I said something prejudiced about Communists. It was politically incorrect and not very bright. I wasn't being serious. Twitter is for jokes. I get along with Russians -- they're funny as hell.
Who told you to shut it down?
My agent did. Everybody thought the team wanted me to shut it down, but the Coyotes didn't have any idea. The team called me and said, "A lot of people are upset. Maybe bring it back and clean it up a bit." I have to make sure I don't cross that line again.
Your policy on retweeting fans?
I won’t retweet compliments. I can’t stand that. Like models who retweet “You’re so pretty!” with an “oh, thank you!” Yeah, we get it. You’re pretty. Let’s move on.
Do you have a social media crush?
I have a man-crush on Rob Delaney. He’s probably the most famous Twitter comedian. I’m not even sure he was a comedian before Twitter. He became famous from Twitter. He was made for Twitter. He’s sarcastic and very creative and witty about pop culture. Like, he’ll take YOLO, which is the most painful term in the world, and he’ll make fun of it.
Who’s your social media crush among females?
As far as girls, I follow a lot of Sports Illustrated girls.
And a few of them are actually pretty damn funny. Like Chrissy Teigen.
Yeah, she’s got a personality on her, which is nice. She’s a good one.
Favorite follow in the league?
Ryan Whitney of the Oilers. He’s from Boston. You know how the Boston guys are. He’s funny, and lets fans have it a little bit.
Fill in the blank: I wish ______ would follow me.
Who’s the girl from “Zero Dark Thirty,” the red-head chick?
She’s beautiful. And any time an actress has talent on top of that -- incredible.
* Based on analytics from sites like Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. Stats through Feb. 12.