Overnight ratings from Saturday show the NBC's coverage of
the Rockets-Suns getting a 6.1, up 20% from a corresponding date
last year, and the Knicks-Pacers getting an 8.0, up 27%.
Overnights for Sunday's Bulls-Magic show a 12.2 (PHILADELPHIA
INQUIRER, 5/16). TNT's Doug Collins attributes it all to Michael
Jordan, comparing him to Muhammad Ali. But NBC's Ed Markey
claim's it's more than Jordan. Markey: "What we do know is that
almost every NBA playoff game, not just Chicago's is up from last
year" (Rudy Martzke, USA TODAY, 5/16)....The inaugural Franklin
National Bank Classic -- a December college hoops tournament with
George Washington, Florida, UMass and Maryland -- has signed a
three-year TV deal with Raycom (Children's Charities Foundation).
Raycom will also produce and distribute a one-hour special
titled, "Border War," on the Georgia-Florida football rivalry
(Raycom)....The IHL Indianapolis Ice has signed a two-year radio
deal with WMYS-AM (Ice)...."Hockey Night in Canada" tops CBC's
list of most-watched series with an average of 1.35 million
viewers (CALGARY HERALD, 5/12).