Viewership continued to decline for the 2012 NBA Playoffs on Friday, as all three games on ESPN/ESPN2 were down double-digits from last year.
Game 3 of the Lakers/Nuggets NBA playoff series drew 3.594 million viewers on ESPN Friday night, down 21% from Lakers/Hornets Game 3 last year (4.578M), but up 27% from Mavericks/Spurs Game 3 in 2010 (2.820M).
Earlier in the night, Hawks/Celtics Game 3 drew 2.883 million viewers — down 15% from Celtics/Knicks Game 3 last year (3.411M), but up 21% from Celtics/Heat Game 3 in 2010 (2.386M).
Keep in mind the two games in 2010 aired directly opposite second and third round coverage of the NFL Draft on ESPN2.
Speaking of ESPN2, Friday’s Game 3 of the Bulls/Sixers series drew just 1.069 million viewers, down 20% from Magic/Hawks Game 3 last year (1.342M), and down 27% from Nuggets/Jazz Game 3 in a later timeslot in 2010 (1.461M).
Through Friday, twelve of the 19 NBA playoff games on ABC, ESPN/ESPN2 and TNT suffered declines compared to last year.
(Friday’s numbers from The Futon Critic)