The 2012 NBA Playoffs got off to a fairly shaky start on TNT, though much of that can be attributed to last year’s exceptionally strong performance.
Sunday’s primetime doubleheader on TNT suffered sharp declines compared to last year. Game 1 of the Celtics/Hawks series drew 3.971 million viewers on TNT, down 34% from Knicks/Celtics Game 1 last year (5.989M), but up 1% from Spurs/Mavericks Game 1 in 2010 (3.925M).
Later in the night, Clippers/Grizzlies Game 1 drew 3.982 million viewers, down 21% from Nuggets/Thunder Game 1 last year (5.038M), but up 33% from Trail Blazers/Suns Game 1 in 2010 (2.988M).
Monday’s games performed better for TNT. Game 2 of the Knicks/Heat series drew 4.373 million viewers — up 29% from Sixers/Heat Game 2 last year (3.402M), and up 12% from Bulls/Cavaliers Game 2 in 2010 (3.907M).
In the nightcap, Mavericks/Thunder Game 2 drew 4.736 million viewers, down 4% from Pacers/Bulls Game 2 last year (4.908M), but up 50% from Jazz/Nuggets Game 2 in 2010 (3.149M).
Numbers for Saturday’s Sixers/Bulls Game 1 on TNT were not immediately available.