Spurs-Grizzlies Game 1 Draws 3.9 Overnight Rating; Pacers' Clincher Gets 4.1 Mark
ABC earned a 3.9 overnight Nielsen rating for Game 1 of the Grizzlies-Spurs Western Conference Finals yesterday. That is down 27% from a 5.3 for the opening game of the Mavericks-Thunder series in ’11, the last time ABC/ESPN broadcast the Western Conference Finals. That game aired on a Tuesday. The game drew a 23.8 local market rating in San Antonio and a 19.1 local rating in Memphis, making it ABC/ESPN's highest-rated Conference Final game in that market. ESPN drew a 4.1 metered market rating for the Pacers’ Game 6 win against the Knicks in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. There was no comparable game last year (THE DAILY). CBS Sports Network’s Jim Rome said, "You know David Stern is crying himself to sleep knowing that the Spurs v. Grizz will not be breaking any ratings records. Let’s face it, it’s not exactly run-and-gun showtime. But what it is, is a heavyweight championship fight” (“Rome,” CBS Sports Network, 5/17).
ESPN HIRES CARLESIMO FOR PLAYOFFS: In N.Y., Bob Raissman reported ESPN will soon bring former Nets coach P.J. Carlesimo in "as an NBA studio analyst for the rest of the playoffs." Carlesimo is "filling the spot Flip Saunders had before he recently left ESPN" to become T'Wolves President of Basketball Operations. He will "work on site at the NBA Finals" and there is a "chance his role will be expanded next season." Carlesimo said, "The conversations have been let’s do the playoffs. Then we’ll sit down and talk about the future.” He added, "I’ve got to look at both options. But the likelihood is that I’ll be broadcasting next year. I’m looking at broadcasting as what I’m going to do moving forward. ... I have enjoyed television and radio way more than I thought when I first started. But if I told you it is the same as coaching I would be lying” (N.Y. DAILY NEWS, 5/19).