SBD/Issue 167/Sports Media

Staples Singers: ABC Sees 5.6 Overnight Rating For Lakers' Rout

Lakers' Win Down 12.5%
From Comparable '08 Game
The Lakers' 89-70 win over the Rockets in Game Seven of their Western Conference Semifinals series earned a 5.6 overnight Nielsen rating on ABC from 3:30-6:00pm ET, down 12.5% compared to a 6.4 for Game Seven of the Celtics-Cavaliers Eastern Conference Semifinals on the same weekend last year (THE DAILY). In N.Y., Bob Raismann wrote, "Finding out what outlet is televising an NBA playoff game is as hard as finding a fanny to fill one of those Legend Suite seats at the new Yankee Stadium." Yesterday's LakersComparative-Rockets game aired on ABC because the NBA "wants the ratings magnet -- the Lakers and Kobe Bryant -- for its network telecast." But if ABC/ESPN and NBA Commissioner David Stern "had true faith in the NBA product," Lakers-Rockets Game Seven "would air Sunday night on ABC in prime time when maximum eyeballs are available." However, Raissman noted ABC execs likely decided airing the season finale of "Desperate Housewives" was "far more important" (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 5/17).

CABLE GUYS: ESPN earned a 5.4 cable rating and 7.352 million viewers for Lakers-Rockets Game Six last Thursday, marking the net's most-viewed basketball game ever. The previous record was held by Game Six of the Heat-Pistons Eastern Conference Finals in '06, which drew 6.602 million viewers. Lakers-Rockets Game Six earned a 13.0 local rating in L.A., and a 16.0 rating in Houston, marking the net's highest-rated NBA game in the Houston DMA (ESPN).

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