Big ratings for NBA Playoffs first round


The NBA Playoffs on ESPN have averaged a 2.7 rating; 2,708,000 household impressions; and 3,667,000 viewers to become the network’s highest-rated and most-viewed first round ever, according to Nielsen. Additionally, the NBA Playoffs on ABC netted a 3.5 rating; 4,083,000 household impressions; and 5,640,000 viewers to become the highest-rated and most-viewed first round on the network since 2004 (4.0 rating; 4,350,000 household impressions and 5,795,000 viewers for two broadcasts).

ABC’s four first-round broadcasts were up 31 percent in viewership compared to 4,305,000 viewers for five first-round broadcasts in 2010 and up 25 percent over a 2.8 rating and 3,258,000 households last year.  ESPN’s eight telecasts netted a 20 percent improvement in viewership vs. 3,048,000 for nine telecasts last year; an 18 percent increase among households vs. 2,295,000; and a 17 percent ratings gain over a 2.3 in 2010.

ESPN and ABC also delivered double-digit growth across all key demos: ESPN – up 21 percent among men 18-34 (2.9 vs. 2.4); 23 percent in men 18-49 (2.7 vs. 2.2); and 24 percent in men 25-54 (2.6 vs. 2.1); ABC – up 20 percent in men 18-34 (3.0 vs. 2.5); 29 percent in men 18-49 (3.1 vs. 2.4); and 24 percent in men 25-54 (3.1 vs. 2.5). 

Celtics/Heat Game 1 Second Most-Viewed Non-Finals NBA Playoff Broadcast on ABC
The Conference Semifinals Game 1 showdown between the Boston Celtics and Miami Heat (May 1 at 3:30 p.m. ET on ABC) delivered a 5.8 rating; 6,714,000 household impressions; and 9,219,000 viewers. The game became ABC’s second most-viewed non-Finals NBA Playoff broadcast (trailing only Spurs/Lakers on May 15, 2003, which posted 6,946,000 households and 9,480,000 viewers).  

Sunday’s broadcast outpaced last year’s equivalent game between the Utah Jazz and Los Angeles Lakers – also a Conference Semifinals Game 1 – by 55 percent among viewers (vs. 5,955,000), and 53 percent in both rating (vs. 3.8) and household impressions (vs. 4,375,000).

Exclusive Coverage of the NBA Playoffs Continues on ESPN & ABC

ESPN and ABC – the home of The Finals – will provide exclusive coverage of the following Conference Semifinal matchups this weekend: 

Fri, May 6
7 p.m.
Chicago at Atlanta, Game 3
Mike Tirico, Hubie Brown, Heather Cox
Mark Jones, Mike Brown
9:30 p.m.
L.A. Lakers at Dallas, Game 3
Mike Breen, Mark Jackson, Jeff Van Gundy, Lisa Salters

Sat, May 7
4:30 p.m.
Kia NBA Countdown
5 p.m.
Oklahoma City vs. Memphis, Game 3
Dave Pasch, Doris Burke, Ric Bucher
8 p.m.
Buick Regal NBA Countdown
8:15 p.m.
Miami at Boston, Game 3
Breen, Jackson, Van Gundy, Salters
ABC (available in SAP), ESPN Radio

Sun, May 8
3 p.m.
Buick Regal NBA Countdown
3:30 p.m.
L.A. Lakers at Dallas, Game 3
Tirico, Brown, Cox

Audience Increases Across, ESPN Mobile Web and
The NBA section on logged 151.8 million page views and 39.3 million total visits, up 51 percent and 21 percent, respectively, compared to the first round of the 2010 NBA Playoffs.  Total minutes were also up 35 percent to 238 million and average daily unique visitors were up 20 percent to 2.01 million.

On the ESPN Mobile Web, the NBA section logged 92.3 million page views and 31.9 million total visits, both up 62 percent.  Additionally, total minutes were up 72 percent to 195.1 million and average daily unique visitors were up 52 percent to 1.5 million.

First-round NBA Playoff games on generated 32.6 million minutes consumed, up 177 percent compared to the first round in 2010.

(Source: ESPN)