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PLAYOFF WATCH: WILL NBA FINALS BUCK TREND; CLIPPED WINGS
Published June 9, 1995
The NBA Finals' Game One received a 14.7 rating and a 26 share, making it the third highest rated Game One in NBA Finals history, according to NBC Sports. The mark represents a 17% gain over last year's Knicks-Rockets opener. Highest rated Game One's: '93 Bulls-Suns (16.8) and '71 Bucks-Bullets (15.3) (NBC). In Atlanta, Prentis Rogers writes that "history suggests" that ratings will fall tonight, but these teams have already topped expectations (ATLANTA CONSTITUTION, 6/9). NBC Sports President reportedly told analyst Matt Guokas that he will be back with Marv Albert on NBC's No. 1 team for '95-96. Bill Walton, who has joined the top team for the Finals, will rejoin Greg Gumbel and Steve Jones on the No. 2 group next season (Rudy Martzke, USA TODAY, 6/9). NON-CABLED WINGS FANS UP IN ARMS: With the Ontario provincial elections airing on CBC last night, Detroit fans were left with no over-the-air option for Game Four of the semifinal series against the Blackhawks. ESPN spokesperson Diane Lamb: "Exclusivity is something we're always looking for in any event we carry. I certainly realize that people in Detroit are rabid hockey fans, for which we're grateful. And we wish they could all see it. But an exclusive event is much more valuable than a non-exclusive one, especially in a hockey-nuts town like Detroit. ... You know, you could mention that those people might want to think about getting cable" (Steve Crowe, DETROIT FREE PRESS, 6/8). CRAIN'S DETROIT BUSINESS estimates that by being prevented from carrying the Conference Finals and Stanley Cup Finals, Detroit's WKBD-TV could lose up to $7.7M (assuming two seven-game series). One local media buyer says WKBD was getting $5,000 per 30-second for the second round of the playoffs, and estimates that the last two rounds would have drawn $10,000 per :30 (CRAIN'S DETROIT BUSINESS, 6/5 issue).