ESPN Has Week of Strong NBA Ratings

Posted by | March 18, 2011 at 3:52 AM

It was a good week for the NBA on ESPN, as three of the network’s four games ranked among its most-viewed since reacquiring rights to the league.

On Monday, the Heat’s 30-point win over the Spurs drew a 1.8 U.S. rating and 2.722 million viewers on ESPN, up 100% in ratings and 117% in viewership from last year (DET/BOS: 0.9, 1.256M).

In the nightcap, the Lakers’ win over the Magic earned a 1.9 and 2.788 million, up 36% and 37%, respectively, from last year (LAL/GS: 1.4, 2.030M).

Shifting gears to Wednesday’s action, Thunder/Heat drew a 1.9 and 2.892 million viewers, up 138% and 175%, respectively, from last year (SA/ORL: 0.8, 1.051M).

Meanwhile, Mavericks/Warriors drew a comparably unimpressive 1.2 and 1.719 million viewers. Numbers for last year’s comparable game were not available.

Spurs/Heat (#16), Magic/Lakers (#12) and Thunder/Heat (#10) rank among the 20 most-viewed regular season NBA games on ESPN since the network reacquired rights to the league in 2002.

Overall, twelve of the 20 most-viewed games on ESPN have taken place this season alone. Of those twelve games, seven have involved the Miami Heat.

(TV By the Numbers 1, 2)