NBA Finals Down 19% In Viewers

Nielsen TV ratings for this year’s NBA Finals on ABC between the Toronto Raptors and the Golden State Warriors declined 19% versus the event a year ago.

The six-game series -- where the Raptors dethroned the Warriors, four games to two -- averaged 14.3 million viewers, down from the Warriors-Cleveland Cavaliers 2018 finals’ 17.6 million average.

One saving grace for this year’s event: the sixth game posted a strong 18.2-million-viewer average. A year ago, during the four-game sweep by the Warriors, Game Two earned 18.5 million.

Overall, this year’s event was the lowest-rated NBA Finals since 2007 -- the San Antonio Spurs and Cleveland Cavaliers -- which averaged 9.3 million viewers (a four-game-to-zero sweep by the Spurs). In 2009, the Los Angeles Lakers-Orlando Magic averaged 14.4 million for a five-game series won by the Lakers.



Major advertisers for this year’s finals, according to were Columbia Pictures’, with 42 airings of its spots ($8.9 million); YouTube TV, 21 airings ($8.2 million); Universal Pictures, 44 airings ($7.2 million); Apple iPhone, 17 airings ($6.3 million); and Nissan, 26 airings ($6.3 million).

Other big spenders included Toyota, with 27 airings ($6.2 million); State Farm, 31 airings ($6.0 million); McDonald’s, 41 airings ($5.6 million); 20th Century Fox, 19 airings ($4.7 million); and American Express, 32 airings ($4.6 million).

The six-game series pulled in a total of $204.4 million in national and regional TV advertising revenue.

2 comments about "NBA Finals Down 19% In Viewers".
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  1. Jordan Feivelson from Webbula, June 17, 2019 at 12:01 p.m.

    Although not an enormous market, isn't part of the story here that one of the teams participating was Toronto based, which is not measured by Nielsen? If this is measurement assumption is inaccurate, I apologize.

  2. John Grono from GAP Research, June 17, 2019 at 10 p.m.

    Yes Jordan, Nielsen doesn't conduct the Canadian TV ratings which are done by Numeris (BBM Canada).

    But even if Nielsen did conduct the Canadian TV ratings it wouldn't change the published TV rating as Canada is not part of the US.

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