Saturday, March 23, 2019
  • Wednesday, Jun. 6, 2018
NBA Finals Propel ABC To Ratings Victory; Nielsen Week In Review
Golden State Warriors forward Draymond Green, bottom, dunks in front of Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love during the first half of Game 2 of basketball’s NBA Finals in Oakland, Calif., Sunday, June 3, 2018. The Warriors won 122-103. (Ezra Shaw/Pool Photo via AP)
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There was a hint of viewer fatigue for the latest chapter of the NBA’s Cleveland-Golden State rivalry.

Viewership was down from the comparable 2017 matchups but not by much, according to Nielsen figures released Tuesday.

The two teams, competing in basketball’s finals for the fourth consecutive year, saw the first two Finals games on ABC score as last week’s most-watched programs.

Last Thursday’s game one was watched by 17.4 million versus 18.7 million in 2017, while Sunday’s game two drew 18.5 million viewers compared to last year’s 19.7 million.

That’s a 7 percent decline for the first game and 6 percent for the second.

The teams meet again Wednesday, with Golden State up two games over the Cleveland Cavaliers as the Warriors defend the title.

Hoops powered ABC to a primetime victory with an average of 6.2 million viewers. NBC had 4.9 million, CBS had 4.6 million, Fox had 2 million, Univision had 1.45 million, ION Television had 1.4 million, Telemundo had 970,000 and CW had 730,000.

ABC enjoyed its most-watched week since the Academy Awards aired in March.

TNT was the week’s most popular cable network, averaging 2.3 million viewers. Fox News Channel had 2.2 million, HGTV had 1.5 million, MSNBC had 1.4 million and USA had 1.3 million.

ABC’s “World News Tonight” topped the evening newscasts with an average of 8.2 million viewers. NBC’s “Nightly News” was second with 7.6 million and the “CBS Evening News” had 5.7 million viewers.

Below are primetime viewership numbers compiled by Nielsen for May 28-June 3. Listings include the week’s ranking and viewership.

1. NBA Finals: Cleveland at Golden State, Game 2, ABC, 18.5 million.
2. NBA Finals: Cleveland at Golden State, Game 1, ABC, 17.4 million.
3. NBA Conference Finals: Golden State at Houston, TNT, 14.9 million.
4. “America’s Got Talent” (Tuesday), NBC, 12.2 million.
5. NBA Finals: Game 2 Post-game,” ABC, 11.4 million.
6. “60 Minutes,” CBS, 7.6 million.
7. “World of Dance,” NBC, 7 million.
8. “The Big Bang Theory,” CBS, 6.7 million.
9. “Young Sheldon,” CBS, 6.6 million.
10. “Code Black,” CBS, 6.4 million.
11. “Instinct,” CBS, 6.37 million.
12. “Code Black,” CBS, 6.3 million.
13. “NCIS,” CBS, 6.04 million.
14. “Blue Bloods,” CBS, 5.57 million.
15. “The Bachelorette,” ABC, 5.5 million.
16. “American Ninja Warrior,” NBC, 5.4 million.
17. “Mom,” CBS, 5.26 million.
18. NHL Stanley Cup Final, NBC, 5.2 million.
19. NBA Countdown, Game 1, ABC, 5.13 million.
20. “America’s Got Talent,” NBC, 5.1 million.

ABC is owned by The Walt Disney Co.; CBS is a division of CBS Corp.; Fox is owned by 21st Century Fox; NBC is owned by NBC Universal.


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