Though down from last year, the opening game of the Thunder/Spurs series earned strong numbers for TNT.
Game 1 of the Thunder/Spurs NBA Western Conference Finals drew a 4.8 U.S. rating and 7.764 million viewers on TNT Sunday night, down 23% in ratings and 30% in viewership from Heat/Bulls Game 1 last year (6.2, 11.109M), but up 9% and 10%, respectively, from Suns/Lakers Game 1 on a Monday night in 2010 (4.4, 7.112M).
Compared to Game 1 of last year’s Thunder/Mavericks series on ESPN (4.3, 6.982M), Sunday’s game increased by 12% in ratings and 11% in viewership.
Sunday’s game ranks as the third-highest rated Game 1 of a conference final since 2002, trailing only Heat/Bulls last year and Nuggets/Lakers Game 1 on ESPN in 2009 (5.0). That does not include Monday’s Celtics/Heat Game 1, as final numbers for that game were not yet available.
In addition, the game ranks as the highest rated conference final opener to involve the Spurs since Lakers/Spurs Game 1 on NBC in 2001 (6.0).