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Volume 26 No. 7
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ABC's Raptors-Heat Overnight Well Below Recent Game 7s From NBA Conference Semis

ABC drew a 4.4 overnight rating for the Raptors' Game 7 win over the Heat yesterday in the Eastern Conference Semifinals, down 24% from a 5.8 overnight for the comparable Rockets-Clippers Game 7 last season. The Toronto market was excluded from yesterday's number. There was no Game 7 during the Conference Semifinals in '14 and '13. Celtics-76ers Game 7 in '12 on a Saturday night drew a 5.5 overnight. The Raptors-Heat game yesterday drew an 18.5 local rating in the Miami-Ft. Lauderdale market (Austin Karp, Assistant Managing Editor).

DO THE DINOSAUR: In Toronto, Bruce Arthur in a front-page piece notes Canadian NBA fans are watching Raptors playoff games "in record numbers." Two years ago the ratings peak "was a little over 900,000" for Nets-Raptors Game 7 in the first round. Some execs thought yesterday's Game 7 against the Heat "might approach 2 million." Arthur: "The franchise has slogged through a lot of crap, self-inflicted and otherwise. This is a moment" (TORONTO STAR, 5/16). The GLOBE & MAIL's Cathal Kelly in a front-page piece writes after years of "nearly uninterrupted disappointment," the Raptors are "within four wins of competing for an NBA title." But give this franchise and its fans "a moment to stop and look around." Yesterday’s win means fans can "finally stop obsessing" about Vince Carter’s missed 3-pointer at the buzzer in Game 7 of the '01 second round against the 76ers. As such, yesterday's game "wasn’t just the high-water mark for Canadian basketball." It also "served as an exorcism" (GLOBE & MAIL, 5/16).