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[05/28/18 - 07:13 AM]
ESPN Matches Its Highest-Rated NBA Game Ever with 9.1 Metered Market Rating for Eastern Conference Finals Game 7
ESPN spins the numbers for Sunday, May 27.

[via press release from ESPN]

ESPN Matches its Highest-Rated NBA Game Ever with 9.1 Metered Market Rating for Eastern Conference Finals Game 7

Highest-Rated Quarter Hour for NBA Game on ESPN: 12.0 Peak Rating

ESPN matched its highest-rated NBA game ever with a 9.1 metered market rating for the Cleveland Cavaliers victory over the Boston Celtics in Game 7 of the 2018 Eastern Conference Finals, according to Nielsen. It matched Game 7 of the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals: the Miami Heat and LeBron James vs. the Boston Celtics. Last night's telecast peaked with a 12.0 rating from 10:45-11 p.m. ET. It is the highest-rated quarter hour of an NBA game on ESPN, as far as records go back.

Based on metered market ratings, Game 7 on ESPN was the highest-rated telecast across all of television for Sunday, May 27. The top five highest-rated local markets were Cleveland (27.6), Boston (21.9), Columbus (15.1), Providence (14.4) and New Orleans (12.9). The 21.9 rating in Boston is the highest-rated NBA Playoffs game ever on ESPN in the market.

Sunday's telecast is now the highest-rated game of the 2018 NBA Playoffs. ESPN's Conference Finals coverage averaged a 6.3 metered market rating, up 37 percent from the same matchup in the Eastern Conference Finals last year and up 34 percent from its Western Conference Finals coverage in 2017. Overall, the 2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN - 19 games - averaged a 3.8 metered market rating, up 31 percent from last year.

The 2018 NBA Finals on ABC will tip off Thursday, May 31, at 9 p.m. ET. The Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James will visit either the Golden State Warriors or the Houston Rockets in Game 1.

Note: NBA Finals analysts Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson will be available on a media conference call tomorrow (Tuesday) at 2 p.m. ET to discuss the event. Media members can call 866-548-4713 with the passcode 7186383.

ESPN Draws Second-Largest Audience Ever for NBA Game on ESPN: 13,305,000 Viewers (Based on Fast Nationals from Nielsen)

Largest Peak Audience Ever for NBA Game on ESPN: 17,463,000 Viewers from 10:30-11 P.M. ET

2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN (19 Games): Second-Most Watched Ever and Up 30 Percent from 2017

ESPN drew its second-largest NBA audience ever for the Cleveland Cavaliers victory over the Boston Celtics in Eastern Conference Finals Game 7. It averaged 13,305,000 viewers, peaking with 17,463,000 viewers from 10:30-11 p.m. ET. It is the largest peak audience ever for an NBA game on ESPN. The data is based on Fast Nationals from Nielsen. Once all streaming and out-of-home viewership is included, last night's Game 7 is expected to be the most-watched NBA game ever on ESPN.

The audience is currently only 41,000 viewers behind 2012 Eastern Conference Finals Game 7 - the Miami Heat and LeBron James vs. the Boston Celtics.

Based on Fast Nationals from Nielsen, ESPN is expected to win the night across all of television for its coverage of NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 7. Last night's telecast is now the most-watched game of the 2018 NBA Playoffs across networks.

The 2018 Eastern Conference Finals on ESPN averaged 8,449,000 viewers, up 34 percent from last year's Eastern Conference Finals, also a Cleveland vs. Boston series. It was up 29 percent from the 2017 Western Conference Finals - the Golden State Warriors vs. San Antonio Spurs - on ESPN.

Overall, the 2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN (19 games) averaged 5,101,000 viewers, up 30 percent from 2017. It is the second-most watched NBA Playoffs ever on ESPN (back to 2003).

The 2018 NBA Finals on ABC will tip off Thursday, May 31, at 9 p.m. ET. The Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James will visit either the Golden State Warriors or the Houston Rockets in Game 1.

Note: NBA Finals analysts Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson will be available on a media conference call tomorrow (Tuesday) at 2 p.m. ET to discuss the event. Media members can call 866-548-4713 with the passcode 7186383.





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