Friday, July 6, 2018

ESPN Ratings

ESPN & ABC's NBA Playoffs Opening Saturday Ratings Highest in Five Years


ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, April 14.

[via press release from ESPN]
ESPN & ABC's NBA Playoffs Opening Saturday Ratings Highest In Five Years
· Quadruple-header Up 17 Percent From 2017; All Four of Saturday's First Round Game 1 Telecasts Up From Corresponding Games Last Year
· Philadelphia-Miami Telecast is Highest-Rated Opening Saturday Game on ESPN in Six Years
ESPN and ABC's NBA Playoffs opening Saturday coverage was up 17 percent, making it the highest-rated opening Saturday in five years (since 2013), according to metered market ratings from Nielsen. The four-game slate averaged a 2.7 metered market rating and all four telecasts were up year over year from their corresponding windows.
The Philadelphia 76ers victory over the Miami Heat drew a 2.9 metered market rating, up 26 percent from last year's San Antonio Spurs-Memphis Grizzlies game. The Sixers-Heat telecast is the highest-rated opening Saturday game on ESPN in six years (since 2012).
On ABC, the Golden State Warriors win over the Spurs drew a 3.3 metered market rating, up 14 percent from last year's Cleveland Cavaliers-Indiana Pacers matchup that drew a 2.9.
The Toronto Raptors Game 1 victory over the Washington Wizards delivered a 2.1 metered market rating, up 17 percent from the Raptors-Bucks game last year that drew a 1.8. In Saturday's nightcap, the New Orleans Pelicans Game 1 win over the Portland Trail Blazers generated a 2.3 metered market rating, up 10 percent from the LA Clippers-Utah Jazz game last year (2.1).
The NBA Playoffs continue today on ABC as the Cleveland Cavaliers host the Indiana Pacers in their first round Game 1 matchup. The broadcast starts at 3:30 p.m. ET with Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy, Mark Jackson and Lisa Salters calling their second game of the weekend.
Additionally, the second edition of Kobe Bryant's Detail, exclusively on ESPN+, will be available as early as Sunday night. It features the five-time NBA Champion Bryant providing high-level analysis of Saturday's Raptors game, from the standpoint of Raptors star DeMar DeRozan.
ESPN and ABC's NBA audience was up across platforms for the 2017-18 regular season.

Read more at http://thefutoncritic.com/ratings/2018/04/15/espn-and-abcs-nba-playoffs-opening-saturday-ratings-highest-in-five-years-997500/20180415espn01/#RIJqdwrBlF2XOxX2.99
ESPN Grows Audience in Second Quarter; Prime Time Up 10 Percent
ESPN further spins the numbers for the quarter to date.
[via press release from ESPN] ESPN Grows Audience in Second Quarter; Prime Time up 10 Percent
ESPN grew its audience in the second quarter of the year, including a rise of 10% in prime time where all the key male and adult demo groups grew 6-12%.

ESPN's prime-time audience was up in large part because of the NBA Playoffs. The network averaged 1,544,000 viewers (P2+), compared to 1,405,000 a year ago, according to Nielsen. Overall, the network's audience rose fractionally, from 604,000 to 607,000. ESPN ranked as the top full-time cable network in total day audience among M18-34, M18-49, and M25-54.

Highlights in the second quarter of 2018:
· The NBA Playoffs on ESPN (19 games) averaged 5,144,000 viewers, up 30 percent from 2017. It is the second-most watched NBA Playoffs ever on ESPN (back to 2003).

· First Take led cable in all key male demos (18-34, 18-49 and 25-54) during its 10 a.m. - noon ET time slot, as it has done every month of 2018. The show's audience is up 2% year to date.

· The NCAA baseball post-season (66 games across ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPNEWS) was up 15% to an average of 550,000 viewers, P2+).

· The WNBA on ESPN2 audience is up 39% after seven games (to 250,000), including the network's most-viewed WNBA regular-season telecast since 2013.

· The midnight edition of SportsCenter was up 12% (to 744,000 impressions).
· The 6 p.m. of SportsCenter was up 5% (to 497,000 impressions). 


ESPN Matches Its Highest-Rated NBA Game Ever with 9.1 Metered Market Rating for Eastern Conference Finals Game 7
ESPN spins the numbers for Sunday, May 27.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN Matches its Highest-Rated NBA Game Ever with 9.1 Metered Market Rating for Eastern Conference Finals Game 7
Highest-Rated Quarter Hour for NBA Game on ESPN: 12.0 Peak Rating
ESPN matched its highest-rated NBA game ever with a 9.1 metered market rating for the Cleveland Cavaliers victory over the Boston Celtics in Game 7 of the 2018 Eastern Conference Finals, according to Nielsen. It matched Game 7 of the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals: the Miami Heat and LeBron James vs. the Boston Celtics. Last night's telecast peaked with a 12.0 rating from 10:45-11 p.m. ET. It is the highest-rated quarter hour of an NBA game on ESPN, as far as records go back.
Based on metered market ratings, Game 7 on ESPN was the highest-rated telecast across all of television for Sunday, May 27. The top five highest-rated local markets were Cleveland (27.6), Boston (21.9), Columbus (15.1), Providence (14.4) and New Orleans (12.9). The 21.9 rating in Boston is the highest-rated NBA Playoffs game ever on ESPN in the market.

Sunday's telecast is now the highest-rated game of the 2018 NBA Playoffs. ESPN's Conference Finals coverage averaged a 6.3 metered market rating, up 37 percent from the same matchup in the Eastern Conference Finals last year and up 34 percent from its Western Conference Finals coverage in 2017. Overall, the 2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN - 19 games - averaged a 3.8 metered market rating, up 31 percent from last year.

The 2018 NBA Finals on ABC will tip off Thursday, May 31, at 9 p.m. ET. The Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James will visit either the Golden State Warriors or the Houston Rockets in Game 1.
Note: NBA Finals analysts Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson will be available on a media conference call tomorrow (Tuesday) at 2 p.m. ET to discuss the event. Media members can call 866-548-4713 with the passcode 7186383.

ESPN Draws Second-Largest Audience Ever for NBA Game on ESPN: 13,305,000 Viewers (Based on Fast Nationals from Nielsen)

Largest Peak Audience Ever for NBA Game on ESPN: 17,463,000 Viewers from 10:30-11 P.M. ET
2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN (19 Games): Second-Most Watched Ever and Up 30 Percent from 2017
ESPN drew its second-largest NBA audience ever for the Cleveland Cavaliers victory over the Boston Celtics in Eastern Conference Finals Game 7. It averaged 13,305,000 viewers, peaking with 17,463,000 viewers from 10:30-11 p.m. ET. It is the largest peak audience ever for an NBA game on ESPN. The data is based on Fast Nationals from Nielsen. Once all streaming and out-of-home viewership is included, last night's Game 7 is expected to be the most-watched NBA game ever on ESPN.

The audience is currently only 41,000 viewers behind 2012 Eastern Conference Finals Game 7 - the Miami Heat and LeBron James vs. the Boston Celtics.

Based on Fast Nationals from Nielsen, ESPN is expected to win the night across all of television for its coverage of NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 7. Last night's telecast is now the most-watched game of the 2018 NBA Playoffs across networks.

The 2018 Eastern Conference Finals on ESPN averaged 8,449,000 viewers, up 34 percent from last year's Eastern Conference Finals, also a Cleveland vs. Boston series. It was up 29 percent from the 2017 Western Conference Finals - the Golden State Warriors vs. San Antonio Spurs - on ESPN.
Overall, the 2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN (19 games) averaged 5,101,000 viewers, up 30 percent from 2017. It is the second-most watched NBA Playoffs ever on ESPN (back to 2003).
The 2018 NBA Finals on ABC will tip off Thursday, May 31, at 9 p.m. ET. The Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James will visit either the Golden State Warriors or the Houston Rockets in Game 1. 

ESPN's Most-Watched NBA Conference Finals Game 6 Since 2012
ESPN spins the numbers for Friday, May 25.

[via press release from ESPN]ESPN's Most-Watched NBA Conference Finals Game 6 Since 2012
· Average Audience of 8,089,000 Viewers, Peaked with 10,336,000 Viewers
· ESPN's Coverage of Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Boston Celtics Wins The Night Across Television
· Game 7 is Sunday at 8:30 p.m. ET on ESPN and the ESPN App

Last night's Cleveland Cavaliers victory over the Boston Celtics was ESPN's most-watched NBA Conference Finals Game 6 since 2012, according to Fast Nationals from Nielsen. The telecast averaged 8,089,000 viewers, peaking with 10,336,000 viewers from 10:30-11 p.m. ET.
The game was up 42 percent from the last time ESPN televised a Conference Finals Game 6 - Cleveland vs. Toronto - in 2016. ESPN won the night across all of television (broadcast and cable) for Friday, May 25.

Through six games, ESPN's coverage of the Eastern Conference Finals is averaging 7,640,000 viewers, up 21 percent from last year's Eastern Conference Finals between Cleveland and Boston. It is up 16 percent from last year's Western Conference Finals - the Golden State Warriors vs. San Antonio Spurs - on ESPN.

The 2018 NBA Eastern Conference Finals culminates with Game 7 on Sunday, May 27 (tomorrow), at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN and the ESPN App. Mike Breen, analysts Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and reporter Doris Burke will call Game 7. Additionally, Game 7 is available on ESPN Radio and the ESPN App with Adam Amin describing the action alongside analyst Jon Barry. NBA Countdown tips off the evening's coverage at 7:30 p.m. with Michelle Beadle, Paul Pierce, Chauncey Billups and Jalen Rose.

The 2018 NBA Finals, exclusively on ABC, begins on Thursday, May 31, at 9 p.m.


ESPN's Coverage of NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 5 Up 30 Percent From 2017
ESPN spins the numbers for Wednesday, May 23.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN's Coverage of NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 5 Up 30 Percent From 2017
· 5.7 Metered Market Rating is Best Across All of Television for Wednesday
· ESPN's Highest-Rated Conference Finals in Six Years
· 2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN Up 17 Percent From Last Year

ESPN's coverage of NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 5 - the Boston Celtics defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers to take a 3-2 series lead - delivered a 5.7 metered market rating, up 30 percent from Game 5 of the same matchup last year. It was the highest-rated telecast of the night across television based on metered market ratings from Nielsen.

This is now ESPN's highest-rated Conference Finals in six years, since Boston vs. Miami in 2012. The 2018 Eastern Conference Finals is averaging a 5.8 metered market rating through five games. Overall, the 2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN is averaging a 3.4 metered market rating, up 17 percent from last year.

Wednesday's Game 5 telecast peaked with a 7.0 rating from 10:45-11 p.m. ET. The top five local markets were Cleveland (21.3), Boston (14.4), Columbus (11.0), Providence (9.9) and New Orleans (8.9).

The series will continue with Game 6 on Friday, May 25, at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN, the ESPN App, ESPN Radio and ESPN Deportes. NBA Countdown will precede the game with a one-hour pre-game show starting at 7:30 p.m. on ESPN and the ESPN App.


ESPN Draws Its Highest-Rated Conference Finals Game 4 in Six Years
ESPN spins the numbers for Monday, May 21.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN Draws Its Highest-Rated Conference Finals Game 4 in Six Years
· 6.1 Metered Market Rating Up 45 Percent vs. ESPN's Coverage of Western Conference Finals Game 4 in 2017
· Up 15 Percent from Same Eastern Conference Finals Game 4 Matchup Last Year
· ESPN's Conference Finals Ratings Up 23 Percent Year Over Year

ESPN drew its highest-rated Conference Finals Game 4 in six years for the Cleveland Cavaliers' victory over the Boston Celtics on Monday night, according to Nielsen. The telecast delivered a 6.1 metered market rating, up 45 percent from ESPN's coverage of the Western Conference Finals Game 4 (Golden State Warriors vs. San Antonio Spurs, 4.2) in 2017, and up 15 percent from the 2017 Eastern Conference Finals Game 4 - also a Cleveland vs. Boston matchup - that drew a 5.3 rating.
Through four games, the ESPN's Eastern Conference Finals coverage is up 23 percent from its Western Conference Finals series last year and from the 2017 Eastern Conference Finals. Overall, ESPN's 2018 NBA Playoffs metered market ratings are up 10 percent from last year.
Monday's telecast peaked with a 7.2 rating from 11-11:15 p.m. ET. The top five local markets were Cleveland (24.6), Boston (12.9), Columbus (12.1), New Orleans (10.4) and Providence (9.2).
Additionally, NBA Countdown on ESPN generated a 1.3 metered market rating, up eight percent from the corresponding Game 4 pre-game show last year.

The next installment of Detail, the high-level basketball analysis and film study show from ESPN and Kobe Bryant's Granity Studios, will be available today (Tuesday), exclusively on ESPN+. Kobe Bryant will break down Golden State Warriors vs. Houston Rockets Game 3 from the vantage point of Stephen Curry.

The 2018 NBA Eastern Conference Finals will continue on ESPN with Game 5 on Wednesday, May 23, at 8:30 p.m. as the Boston Celtics host the Cleveland Cavaliers. The series is currently tied 2-2.


Second-Highest Rated NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 3 Ever on ESPN
ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, May 19.

[via press release from ESPN] Second-Highest Rated NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 3 Ever on ESPN
5.1 Metered Market Rating Up 11 Percent from ESPN's Western Conference Finals Game 3 Last Year; Up Two Percent from Same Eastern Conference Finals Matchup in 2017
ESPN's NBA Eastern Conference Finals Up Double-digits from Both Conference Finals Series Last Year

ESPN's coverage of the Cleveland Cavaliers decisive victory over the Boston Celtics on Saturday night became the network's second-highest rated NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 3 ever, according to Nielsen. The telecast drew a 5.1 metered market rating, up 11 percent from ESPN's Western Conference Finals Game 3 last year, and up two percent from the same Eastern Conference Finals matchup in 2017.

Despite Cleveland's dominating 30-point victory over Boston, the telecast peaked with a 5.7 metered market rating three times: 9:15-9:30 p.m. ET, 10-10:15 p.m. and 10:15-10:30 p.m. The top five local markets were Cleveland (22.1), Boston (11.9), Columbus (9.7), Dayton (8.2), and Providence (8.0).
Through three games, ESPN's Eastern Conference Finals coverage is up 19 percent from its Western Conference Finals coverage - Golden State vs. San Antonio - in 2017. It is up 27 percent from last year's Cleveland vs. Boston Eastern Conference Finals series. Metered market ratings for the 2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN are up seven percent year over year.

Additionally, Saturday night's edition of NBA Countdown delivered a 1.3 metered market rating, up eight percent from last year's one-hour Game 3 preview show.

The latest episode of Detail, the high-level basketball analysis and film study show from ESPN and Kobe Bryant, will be available today (Sunday) exclusively on ESPN+. Bryant will break down last night's Game 3.

The 2018 NBA Eastern Conference Finals will continue with Game 4 on Monday, May 21, at 8:30 p.m. Mike Breen will provide commentary with analysts Jeff Van Gundy and Mark Jackson and reporter Doris Burke. The telecast is also available to stream via the ESPN App. Boston currently leads Cleveland 2-1 in the best-of-seven series. 

NBA on ESPN: Highest-Rated Eastern Conference Finals Game 2 in Six Years
ESPN spins the numbers for Tuesday, May 15.

[via press release from ESPN] NBA on ESPN: Highest-Rated Eastern Conference Finals Game 2 In Six Years
6.5 Metered Market Rating Up 71 Percent From Same Matchup Last Year
Up 51 Percent from ESPN's Western Conference Finals Game 2 Last Year
Game 2 Peaked with 8.0 Metered Market Rating

ESPN's coverage of the Boston Celtics victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday generated a 6.5 metered market rating, making it the highest-rated Eastern Conference Finals Game 2 since 2012. It was also ESPN's highest-rated Conference Finals telecast since Game 5 of the 2015 Golden State Warriors vs. Houston Rockets series, according to Nielsen.

Last night's Game 2 was up 71 percent from last year's Eastern Conference Finals Game 2, featuring the same matchup. It was also up 51 percent from ESPN's Western Conference Finals Game 2 in 2017.

Tuesday's telecast, in which the Celtics took a 2-0 series lead over the Cavaliers, peaked with an 8.0 metered market rating in the final quarter hour - 10:45 p.m.-11 p.m. ET.

In the Boston market, the game generated a 16.0 rating, making it the highest-rated NBA game on ESPN in the market since the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals. In Cleveland, the telecast generated a 24.4 rating. The rest of the top five markets included Columbus (11.4), Providence (10.9) and San Francisco (9.0).

The Eastern Conference Finals continues with Game 3 on Saturday, May 19, at 8:30 p.m. on ESPN, the ESPN App, ESPN Radio and ESPN Deportes. NBA Countdown presented by Mountain Dew Kickstart tips off the coverage at 7:30 p.m.

In addition, the next installment of Kobe Bryant's Detail will feature the five-time NBA Champion breaking down Game 2 from the vantage point of Boston Celtics rookie sensation Jayson Tatum. The show is expected to be available this Thursday, exclusively on ESPN+.


NBA on ABC: Highest-Rated NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 1 Since 2015
ESPN spins the numbers for Sunday, May 13.

[via press release from ESPN] NBA on ABC: Highest-Rated NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 1 Since 2015
· Boston vs. Cleveland Game 1 Draws 5.4 Metered Market Rating, Up 15 Percent from Same Matchup Last Year and Up 32 Percent from 2016

· Game 1 was Highest-Rated Live Sports Event of the Weekend

Sunday's NBA Eastern Conference Finals Game 1 on ABC - the Boston Celtics defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 108-83 - generated a 5.4 metered market rating, making it the highest-rated Eastern Conference Finals Game 1 since 2015, according to Nielsen. It was up 15 percent from the same matchup last year (4.7) and up 32 percent from 2016 when Cleveland vs. Toronto drew a 4.1.
Sunday's Game 1 broadcast peaked with a 6.5 rating from 5:30-5:45 p.m. Based on the metered market data, Game 1 was the highest-rated live sports event of the weekend.

Through nine games, the 2018 NBA Playoffs on ABC is averaging a 4.4 metered market rating, up seven percent from 2017.

The 2018 Eastern Conference Finals continues Tuesday, May 15, with Game 2 at 8:30 p.m. exclusively on ESPN. ESPN will also offer a second-screen experience called Full Court Press on ESPN2. Prior to Game 2, ESPN will televise the 2018 NBA Draft Lottery presented by State Farm from 7:30-8:30 p.m. NBA Countdown presented by Mountain Dew Kickstart will tip off the evening's coverage at 7 p.m. on ESPN.


NBA Playoffs on ABC: Cleveland-Indiana Game 7 Delivers 5.4 Metered Market Rating to Become Highest-Rated First Round Game in 14 Years
ESPN spins the numbers for Sunday, April 29.

[via press release from ESPN] NBA Playoffs on ABC: Cleveland-Indiana Game 7 Delivers 5.4 Metered Market Rating To Become Highest-Rated First Round Game in 14 Years
Game 7 Peaks with 7.4 Rating

ABC's coverage of the Cleveland Cavaliers-Indiana Pacers Game 7 on Sunday generated a 5.4 metered market rating, making it the highest-rated first round NBA Playoffs telecast in 14 years across networks, according to Nielsen. The 5.4 rating was up 29 percent from last year's comparable game - LA Clippers vs. Utah Jazz Game 7, which drew a 4.2 rating.

Game 7 on ABC peaked from 3:30-3:45 p.m. ET with a 7.4 rating. In the Cleveland market, Game 7 generated a 24.6 rating, making it the highest-rated first round NBA Playoffs game since 2010. In Indianapolis, Game 7 drew a 21.6 rating, which is the best rating ever for a first round game in the market.

The last time a first round NBA Playoffs game drew a higher rating was on April 25, 2004 when the Los Angeles Lakers vs. Houston Rockets broadcast on ABC delivered a 5.8 rating. There have been 625 nationally televised first round games since then.

Additionally, ABC's coverage of Game 1 between the Houston Rockets and Utah Jazz on Sunday delivered a 4.4 metered market rating, up 38 percent from last year's comparable game - Boston Celtics vs. Washington Wizards, which drew a 3.2 rating. The 4.4 rating also outdrew every second round telecast from 2017. The broadcast generated a 12.1 rating in the Salt Lake City market and an 11.9 rating in the Houston market.

Through six broadcasts, the 2018 NBA Playoffs on ABC is averaging a 4.2 metered market rating, up 11 percent from 2017.

In addition to the NBA Playoffs, ESPN and ABC combined for a significant weekend of major live sports, including the NFL Draft and Sunday Night Baseball, with all events generating ratings success.

The NBA Playoffs will continue on ESPN this Thursday, May 3, at 6 p.m. when the Cleveland Cavaliers visit the Toronto Raptors in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference Semifinals series. The NBA Playoffs on ABC will continue on Saturday, May 5, at 8:30 p.m. for Game 3 of the Cavaliers-Raptors series. On Sunday, May 6, ABC will broadcast Game 3 between the Golden State Warriors and New Orleans Pelicans at 3:30 p.m. ESPN's full schedule and coverage plans will be issued this week.

ESPN Presentation of 2018 NFL Draft Delivers More Than 2.9 Million Viewers
ESPN further spins the numbers for its coverage to date.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN Presentation of 2018 NFL Draft Delivers More Than 2.9 Million Viewers
· Round 1 on ESPN Led All Networks
· Rounds 4-7 on ESPN and ABC Ranks as Most-Viewed Day 3 Across All Networks in NFL Draft History

ESPN's three-day presentation of the 2018 NFL Draft (Rounds 1-7) averaged a 1.9 household rating and 2,906,000 viewers over the nearly 15 hours across ESPN, ESPN2, ESPN Deportes and ABC, according to Nielsen.

Note: The NFL Draft audience is likely to grow by eight percent once all streaming and out-of-home audiences are included, based on ESPN's new Nielsen Total Audience measurement.

The top 10 metered markets: Columbus (4.4), New Orleans (4.2), Cleveland (3.9), Buffalo, Cincinnati, Birmingham and Norfolk (3.5), Dayton (3.3), Oklahoma City and Atlanta (3.1). Host city Dallas-Ft. Worth delivered a 2.4.

Round 1:
ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes combined to deliver 5,473,000 viewers for Round 1, according to Nielsen. Coverage peaked from 8:30-9 p.m. (between picks 4-8) with 6,420,000 viewers. Of the multiple networks carrying the NFL Draft on Thursday night, ESPN was the most-watched with an average audience of 5,336,000 viewers. Additionally, Day 1 of the NFL Draft helped ESPN win the night across all cable and broadcast networks among key male and adult demos (18-34, 18-49, 25-54).

Rounds 2-3:
ESPN and ESPN2 delivered an average audience of 1,678,000 viewers for Rounds 2-3, according to Nielsen. ESPN.com and the ESPN App recorded their most-trafficked day for NFL content since the final Sunday of the 2017 NFL regular season.

Rounds 4-7:
ESPN and ABC combined to deliver 2,249,000 viewers on Saturday for Rounds 4-7, according to Nielsen, which is an increase of 40 percent vs. the 2017 telecast on ESPN. It was the most-viewed Day 3 across all networks in NFL Draft History.

ESPN Draws Its Highest-Rated 2018 NBA Playoffs Telecast for Cleveland Cavaliers-Indiana Pacers Game 6
ESPN spins the numbers for Friday, April 27.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN Draws Its Highest-Rated 2018 NBA Playoffs Telecast for Cleveland Cavaliers-Indiana Pacers Game 6

· 2.9 Metered Market Rating for Indiana's Game 6 Victory Up 81 Percent From Last Year
· NBA Playoffs on ESPN Up 14 Percent Year Over Year Based on Metered Market Ratings
ESPN drew its highest-rated 2018 NBA Playoffs telecast for Friday's first round Game 6 telecast of the Indiana Pacers' victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers. The telecast generated a 2.9 metered market rating, up 81 percent from last year's Boston Celtics-Chicago Bulls game, a 1.6, according to Nielsen.
Last night's telecast peaked with a 3.6 metered market rating from 9:45-10 p.m. ET. In Cleveland, the game delivered a 12.3 rating, making it the highest-rated first round game on ESPN ever in the market. In Indianapolis, the telecast also delivered its best-ever local rating for a first round game on ESPN, with an 11.9 rating.

The 2018 NBA Playoffs on ESPN is averaging a 2.5 metered market rating, up 14 percent from 2017.
Additionally, last night's Utah Jazz Game 6 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder generated a 2.8 metered market rating on ESPN, up 40 percent from last night's comparable game - the Jazz vs. LA Clippers (2.0). In the Salt Lake City market, Game 6 delivered a 9.4 rating, while in the Oklahoma City, market, the telecast drew a 9.2 rating.

Coverage continues on ABC tomorrow, Sunday, April 29, at 1 p.m. as the Cavaliers host the Pacers in Game 7 of their first round series. At 3:30 p.m., the Houston Rockets host the Jazz in Game 1 of their Western Conference semifinal series. Both games will also stream on the ESPN App.

ESPN Leads All Networks with NFL Draft Round 1 Telecast
ESPN spins the numbers for Thursday, April 26.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN Leads All Networks with NFL Draft Round 1 Telecast
· ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes combine to deliver nearly 5.5 million viewers
· ESPN wins the night among all key male and adult demos
· Live Twitter show On the Clock averages 2.9 million viewers

ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes combined to deliver a total live audience of 5,473,000 viewers for its Round 1 telecast of the 2018 NFL Draft, according to Nielsen. Coverage peaked from 8:30-9 p.m. (between picks 4-8) with 6,420,000 viewers.

Of the multiple networks carrying the NFL Draft on Thursday night, ESPN was the most-watched with an average audience of 5,336,000 viewers. Additionally, day 1 of the NFL Draft helped ESPN win the night across all cable and broadcast networks among key male and adult demos (18-34, 18-49, 25-54).

The top-10 metered markets for ESPN's NFL Draft coverage included Buffalo (8.3), Columbus (8.1), Cleveland (7.5), New Orleans (6.8), Birmingham, Ala. (6.5), Norfolk (6.1), Cincinnati (6.0), Oklahoma City (5.7), and (tied) Indianapolis, Louisville and Atlanta (5.6). Cleveland had been the highest-rated market for Round 1 on ESPN the past four years.

Note: The NFL Draft audience is likely to grow by eight percent once all streaming and out-of-home audiences are included, based on ESPN's new Nielsen Total Audience measurement.
ESPN Digital and Social

Thursday was the most-trafficked day for NFL content on ESPN.com and the ESPN App since the Super Bowl. Six of the top-10 articles on ESPN.com and the ESPN App were NFL Draft related.
ESPN's live On the Clock Twitter show averaged 2.9 million viewers, who accounted for 1.5 million interactions with the show. On the Clock returns tonight (7 p.m. ET) for Rounds 2-3.
2018 NFL Draft Continues on ESPN/ESPN2

ESPN's coverage of the 2018 NFL Draft continues tonight from Arlington, Texas with Rounds 2-3 (7 p.m. ET on ESPN, 8 p.m. on ESPN2), and Rounds 4-7 on Saturday, beginning at 12 p.m. on ESPN and simulcast on ABC. Coverage is also being streamed live on the ESPN App.

ESPN & ABC's NBA Playoffs Opening Saturday Ratings Highest in Five Years
ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, April 14.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN & ABC's NBA Playoffs Opening Saturday Ratings Highest In Five Years
· Quadruple-header Up 17 Percent From 2017; All Four of Saturday's First Round Game 1 Telecasts Up From Corresponding Games Last Year

· Philadelphia-Miami Telecast is Highest-Rated Opening Saturday Game on ESPN in Six Years
ESPN and ABC's NBA Playoffs opening Saturday coverage was up 17 percent, making it the highest-rated opening Saturday in five years (since 2013), according to metered market ratings from Nielsen. The four-game slate averaged a 2.7 metered market rating and all four telecasts were up year over year from their corresponding windows.

The Philadelphia 76ers victory over the Miami Heat drew a 2.9 metered market rating, up 26 percent from last year's San Antonio Spurs-Memphis Grizzlies game. The Sixers-Heat telecast is the highest-rated opening Saturday game on ESPN in six years (since 2012).

On ABC, the Golden State Warriors win over the Spurs drew a 3.3 metered market rating, up 14 percent from last year's Cleveland Cavaliers-Indiana Pacers matchup that drew a 2.9.

The Toronto Raptors Game 1 victory over the Washington Wizards delivered a 2.1 metered market rating, up 17 percent from the Raptors-Bucks game last year that drew a 1.8. In Saturday's nightcap, the New Orleans Pelicans Game 1 win over the Portland Trail Blazers generated a 2.3 metered market rating, up 10 percent from the LA Clippers-Utah Jazz game last year (2.1).

The NBA Playoffs continue today on ABC as the Cleveland Cavaliers host the Indiana Pacers in their first round Game 1 matchup. The broadcast starts at 3:30 p.m. ET with Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy, Mark Jackson and Lisa Salters calling their second game of the weekend.

Additionally, the second edition of Kobe Bryant's Detail, exclusively on ESPN+, will be available as early as Sunday night. It features the five-time NBA Champion Bryant providing high-level analysis of Saturday's Raptors game, from the standpoint of Raptors star DeMar DeRozan.
ESPN and ABC's NBA audience was up across platforms for the 2017-18 regular season.

Second Round Masters Ratings on ESPN Up 55 Percent Over 2017
ESPN spins the numbers for Friday, April 6.

[via press release from ESPN] Second Round Masters Ratings on ESPN Up 55 Percent Over 2017
ESPN's live telecast of the second round of the Masters Tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on Friday, April 6, earned a 2.9 overnight rating, an increase of 55 percent over the Friday rating in 2017 and up 27 percent over the 2016 Friday rating.

The rating was ESPN's best on Friday since a 3.3 in 2013 and tied for the third-best Friday rating since ESPN began airing the Masters in 2008. The Friday telecast in 2017 earned a 1.8 overnight rating while the 2016 Friday telecast earned a 2.3 overnight rating.

Friday's telecast, which aired from 3 p.m. until 7:45 p.m., peaked between 6:15-6:30 p.m. with a 3.3 rating as Tiger Woods was playing the closing holes of his round.
The top 10 metered markets:
Greenville, S.C. 5.4
Ft. Myers, Fla. 5.1
Orlando, Fla. 4.8
Louisville, Ky. 4.8
Tampa-St. Petersburg, Fla. 4.5
Greensboro, N.C. 4.5
Charlotte, N.C. 4.2
Buffalo, N.Y. 3.8
Jacksonville, Fla. 3.8
Indianapolis. Ind. 3.8

Also yesterday, SportsCenter at the Masters, which aired from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. with expanded quick-turnaround highlights and analysis of in-progress play, earned a 0.6 metered market average, up 200 percent over the 0.2 rating from the same time last year.
ESPN's live Masters coverage ended Friday but SportsCenter and ESPN.com will continue to report from the Masters throughout the weekend.

ESPN Earns Best Overnight Rating for Masters First Round Since 2015
ESPN spins the numbers for Thursday, April 5.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN Earns Best Overnight Rating for Masters First Round Since 2015
ESPN telecast of the first round of the Masters Tournament on Thursday, April 5, earned a 2.2 overnight rating, the highest for the first round since 2015. The rating was up 40 percent over 2017 and 16 percent over 2016.

It was the highest Thursday rating since a 2.4 overnight in 2015, the last year Tiger Woods competed in the event and when most of his round was included in the telecast. Woods is back this year and played earlier in the day Thursday while ESPN's telecast of the second round on Friday will include the majority of Woods' round.

Thursday's overnight rating was the fourth-highest Thursday since ESPN began airing the Masters in 2008. The coverage aired from 3 p.m. until 7:20 p.m. ET with the rating peaking at a 2.4 between 6:15-7 p.m.

Louisville led all metered markets with a 4.8 rating, followed by Greenville, S.C., at 4.7, and Dayton, Ohio, and Fort Myers, Fla., at 4.2. Tampa-St. Petersburg and Orlando earned a 3.7.
ESPN will air Friday's second round beginning at 3 p.m. ET, while SportsCenter at the Masters will air from 10 a.m. until the live coverage begins with in-progress updates.

Masters First Round Viewership on ESPN Up 40 Percent From 2017
Nearly three million viewers tuned in for ESPN's telecast of the first round of the Masters Tournament on Thursday, an increase of 40 percent over the Thursday audience of last year, according to Nielsen Fast National data.

The telecast, which aired from 3 p.m. - 7:20 p.m. ET, averaged 2,971,287 viewers, up 40 percent from the 2,129,214 Thursday average in 2017 and up 24 percent from the 2016 Thursday average of 2,397,624.

The telecast ranked as the fourth-best Thursday since ESPN began airing the Masters Tournament in 2008, exceeded only by the years in which Tiger Woods was featured in Thursday coverage (2009, 2010 and 2015). Most of Woods' round on Thursday had already been completed when ESPN's telecast began.

The telecast also saw growth across all key demographics, with a 44 percent increase in persons 25-54.

Digitally, ESPN saw significant growth across app and website usage compared to the opening Thursday of the tournament last year. The men's golf section of the ESPN App saw a 111 percent increase in total minutes over 2017 (27,198,202 million vs. 12,889,566 million in 2017) with a 42 percent increase in visits (5,181,829 vs. 3,636,525 in 2017).

On ESPN.com, the golf section had a 41 percent increase in visits over last year (3,310,158 million vs. 2,353,247 million in 2017).

Also on Thursday, SportsCenter at the Masters, which included more coverage from the Masters than ever before, saw a 67 percent increase in overnight ratings from noon to 3 p.m. over 2017 (0.5 vs. 0.3 in 2017).

While ESPN's live Masters coverage ends Friday, SportsCenter and ESPN.com will continue to report from the Masters throughout the weekend.

ABC Draws Highest-Rated "NBA Sunday Showcase" Broadcast Since 2015 for Cleveland Cavaliers-Boston Celtics Showdown
ESPN spins the numbers for Sunday, February 11.

[via press release from ESPN] ABC Draws Highest-Rated "NBA Sunday Showcase" Broadcast Since 2015 for Cleveland Cavaliers-Boston Celtics Showdown

Sunday's collision of NBA Eastern Conference powerhouses, in which the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James defeated the Boston Celtics and Kyrie Irving 121-99, helped ABC generate its highest-rated NBA Sunday Showcase broadcast since 2015, according to metered market ratings from Nielsen.

The broadcast delivered a 3.6 metered market rating, up 57 percent from last year's San Antonio-New York game (2.3). It peaked at a 4.0 from 5:15-5:30 p.m. and again from 5:45-6 p.m. ET. The Cavaliers-Celtics game now stands as the fourth-highest rated NBA broadcast of the 2017-18 season, across all networks.

Sunday's broadcast drew a 20.5 rating in the Cleveland market and an 8.1 rating in the Columbus market. The rest of the top five markets include Norfolk (6.5), Dayton (6.2), and Birmingham (5.5). It drew a 5.5 rating in the Boston market.

Through two games, ABC's NBA Sunday Showcase series is averaging a 2.7 metered market rating this season, up 27 percent from a 2.1 last year.

Epic College Football Playoff National Championship Delivers Massive 16.7 Overnight, Up 9% Year-Over-Year
ESPN spins the numbers for Monday, January 8.

[via press release from ESPN] Epic College Football Playoff National Championship Delivers Massive 16.7 Overnight, Up 9% Year-Over-Year
· Three-Game College Football Playoff Drives Ratings: Up 18% Year-Over-Year
· Record-Setting: Best New Year's Six + CFP National Championship Ever

· CFP National Championship Game:
· Birmingham Leads the Way: 57.6 Local Rating, Up from Last Year's CFP National Championship
· Atlanta Sets New High: 47.8 Rating, Highest for an ESPN College Football Game in the Market
ESPN's presentation of the epic College Football Playoff National Championship between Georgia and Alabama (Jan. 8 at 8 p.m.) delivered a massive 16.7 overnight on its Nielsen-rated networks (ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU) as part of its MegaCast production, up 9% from last season's thrilling College Football Playoff National Championship on the same three Nielsen-rated networks. The ESPN-only presentation delivered a monster 16.0 overnight for the Crimson Tide's overtime victory, up 8% from the ESPN-only presentation last season, a game which featured a dramatic, last minute touchdown to win the game.

This season's College Football Playoff National Championship, the first ever to go to overtime, was also up 5% from ESPN's MegaCast presentation (ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU) of the second CFP National Championship (January 11, 2016).

College Football Playoff National Championships Provide ESPN with its Highest-Ratings on Record
Combined with the inaugural season, the College Football Playoff National Championship now represent the two-highest rated events on record for ESPN's networks.

Among all college football bowl games, the College Football Playoff era has provided ESPN with three of its top 5 highest-rated games and seven of the top 10:
Rank Rating Date Matchup Network Game
1 18.8 Jan 12, 2015 Ohio State vs. Oregon ESPN CFP National Championship
2 16.7 Jan. 8, 2018 Georgia vs. Alabama ESPN CFP National Championship
3 16.1 Jan 10, 2011 Auburn vs. Oregon ESPN BCS National Championship
4 16.0 Jan 11, 2016 Alabama vs. Clemson ESPN CFP National Championship
5 15.7 Jan 7, 2013 Notre Dame vs. Alabama ESPN BCS National Championship
6 15.5 Jan 1, 2015 Florida State vs. Oregon ESPN CFP Semifinal
7. 15.3 Jan 1, 2015 Ohio State vs. Alabama ESPN CFP Semifinal
15.3 Jan 9, 2017 Clemson vs. Alabama ESPN CFP National Championship
15.3 Jan 6, 2014 Florida State vs. Auburn ESPN BCS National Championship
10 14.8 Jan 1, 2018 Oklahoma vs. Georgia ESPN CFP Semifinal
Please note: All Nielsen-rated MegaCast feeds reflected where appropriate

Additional Georgia-Alabama College Football Playoff National Championship Highlights
· Birmingham Leads the Way, Atlanta Sets New Record: With an impressive 57.6 local rating, Birmingham was the No. 1 rated local market, up from last season's national championship. Atlanta earned its highest rating ever for a college football game on ESPN, earning a 47.8 rating. The complete top 15:
Rank Local Overnight Market
1 57.6 Birmingham
2 47.8 Atlanta
3 31.9 Greenville
4 29.0 Jacksonville
5 28.3 Nashville
6 28.0 Knoxville
7 27.5 New Orleans
8 23.5 Austin
9 23.2 Columbus
10 22.8 Memphis
11 22.0 Tampa
12 21.4 Fort Myers
13 20.8 Norfolk
14 20.6 Louisville
15 19.8 Richmond

All local markets are ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU Combined
· Overtime Rating Soars: The game earned a 17.1 overnight as the Bulldogs-Crimson Tide played overtime (midnight - 12:15 a.m.). The peak audience was an 18.4, which occurred late in the first half (9:45 p.m. - 10 p.m. ET)

Three-Game College Football Playoff Up 18% from Last Season
ESPN's entire presentation of the three game College Football Playoff averaged an 14.9 overnight, up an impressive 18% from last year's three-game presentation. In addition to the championship game, each of the two CFP Semifinals were also up year-over-year individually as well, as documented last week.

ESPN Delivers Highest-Rated New Year's Six + CFP National Championship in Current Era
Factoring in the entire New Year's Six, the seven games (New Year's Six + CFP National Championship) averaged an 9.8 overnight, the best ever in the four years of the new system. The seven-game average was up 5% from last year's same seven games.

ESPN Concludes College Football Post Season Up 10%

ESPN's industry leading postseason schedule, consisting of 35 games plus the CFP National Championship, averaged a 3.4 overnight, up 10% from last year's similar slate.

ESPN's MegaCast Presentation offered the 20 different productions for the game; however, only Nielsen rated networks (ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU) are represented in the overnight for all years. ESPNEWS, ESPN Classic, and SEC Network are not rated and thus not accounted for in this release. Additionally, ESPN3 streaming numbers are also not accounted for here.

Streaming Clarification: Nielsen reported numbers for all ESPN and ESPN2 telecast reflect TV viewing + Streaming audiences on OTT devices (such as Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, gaming consoles and smart TVs). The above number does not reflect streaming audiences from ESPNU or any ESPN3 presentations. All comparisons are Nielsen reported numbers to Nielsen reported numbers. This new system has been used since Sept. 26.

ESPN's Celtics-Cavaliers Telecast Matches Best Regular Season Rating in Nearly Two Years
ESPN spins the numbers for Wednesday, January 3.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN's Celtics-Cavaliers Telecast Matches Best Regular Season Rating in Nearly Two Years
2.4 Metered Market Rating Up 60 Percent from Last Year

ESPN's telecast of the Boston Celtics victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday delivered a 2.4 metered market rating, according to Nielsen. It matches two Christmas telecasts as the highest-rated NBA regular season game on ESPN in nearly two years.

The 2.4 rating is up 60 percent from a 1.5 rating for last year's comparable game - Cleveland vs. Chicago. Last night's telecast peaked with a 2.7 rating between 9:30-10 p.m. ET. In the Cleveland market, the game delivered a 6.2 rating, the best since a Cleveland-Miami matchup on ESPN drew a 6.4 on October 30, 2015. Wednesday's telecast generated a 4.2 local rating in Boston, which is the second best rating on ESPN this season in the market.

The last time ESPN drew a higher rating for an NBA regular season game was on April 13, 2016, when the Golden State Warriors set the all-time regular season wins record. That telecast drew a 2.7. Wednesday's 2.4 rating is even with the Philadelphia-New York Christmas 2017 rating and the Boston-New York Christmas 2016 rating.

ESPN in 2017: Live Events Drive Audience Increases
ESPN further spins the numbers for the year to date.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN in 2017: Live Events Drive Audience Increases
· ESPN's 2017 Prime-Time and Total-Day Audiences Rise vs. 2016
· ESPN Leads Cable Nets in Q4 Prime-Time Viewership for 18th Time in 19 Years
· ESPN Has Led Cable for Key Male Demos for 18 Straight Quarters

ESPN's 2017 viewership in prime time and in total day rose vs. 2016, while the network returned to its familiar spot atop cable networks in fourth quarter prime-time viewership and continued its streak of leading full-time cable networks in the key male demos to 18 consecutive quarters (4.5 years).
· In 2017, ESPN averaged 2,058,000 viewers (P2+) in prime time across TV and streaming, an increase of 7% over 2016. ESPN grew its audience among men and adults 18-34, 18-49 and 25-54.
· ESPN also saw its total day viewership rise 1%.

· In the fourth quarter, ESPN grew its audience 13% in prime to 3,052,000 viewers across TV and streaming, the best on cable, as it had accomplished from 1999 - 2015 before the aberration of last year's political climate pushed ESPN to second place (behind Fox News). Audiences also rose by a double-digit percentage among men and adults 18-34, 18-49 and 25-54. ESPN's total day viewership rose 9%.

· In addition, the recently completed quarter was the 18th straight in which ESPN led full-time cable networks in delivering the key male demographic groups advertisers covert: men 18-34, 18-49 and 25-54.

Live Events Break Through the Clutter
Throughout 2017, ESPN's industry-leading portfolio of rights to marquee live sporting events garnered noteworthy viewership superlatives and growth:
· 2017 New Year's Six Bowl Games: averaged nearly 15 million viewers, and will be the most-watched New Year's Six once streaming audience is fully reported. The semis were up 9% from last year and up 24% from the 2015 season. All non-CFP Semifinal New Year's Six Games set new viewership records. In addition, the College Football Playoff Semifinals (officially in 2018's ratings) averaged 24,590,000 viewers, up 27% from last year and 44% from the 2015 season.

· NBA Finals on ABC: most-watched NBA Finals since 1998 (playoffs before Finals up 5%)
· Pacquiao vs. Horn: most-watched boxing telecast on cable television since 2006
· College Football on ABC: Saturday Night Football was the most-watched college football franchise among all networks in any time slot for the second consecutive year.
· College Football on ESPN/ESPN2: ESPN/ ESPN2 - 47 of cable's biggest 50 audiences for the sport.
· Monday Night Football (17 games in 16 weeks): ESPN won the night among all networks in all key male and adult demos all 16 weeks.
· Men's College World Series (16 games): up 56%
· MLB Home Run Derby: up 55%
· MLS Playoffs (seven games): up 38% from 2016; championship game up 20% from 2015 (last time on ESPN)
· NCAA Women's Basketball National Championship: up 29%
· US Open Women's Final: up 26% and the best in ESPN's three years
· Women's College World Series (15 games): up 21%
· NBA Summer League (39 games): up 18%
· NBA (season to date, 20 games): up 16% and up 23% among Adults 18-49
· College Football's "New Year's Six" and the 2017 Championship Game: up 15%
· WNBA Finals (five games): up 15%
· NBA Draft: up 14%
· Little League World Series (32 games): up 12%
· US Open: up 8%
· NCAA Men's Basketball: Saturday nights up 8%; Tuesday & Thursday nights both up 6%
· Wimbledon Gentlemen's Final: up 6%

Thrilling Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual Delivers Monster 14.8 Rating
ESPN spins the numbers for Monday, January 1.

[via press release from ESPN] Thrilling Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual Delivers Monster 14.8 Rating; Both College Football Playoff Semifinals up Significantly Year-Over-Year; ESPN Delivers Highest-Rated New Year's Six Ever

· CFP Semifinal at Rose Bowl Game Up 29%
· CFP Semifinal at Allstate Sugar Bowl Posts Strong 12.5 Overnight; Up 19%
· Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Earns Its Highest, Non-CFP Semifinal Rating in New Year's Six Era
· Birmingham Earns Highest Local Rating for Both CFP Semifinals

ESPN's presentation of the College Football Playoff Semifinals at the Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual and Allstate Sugar Bowl delivered monster ratings and significant year-over-year ratings increases driving ESPN to its highest-rated presentation of the New Year's Six Ever.
CFP Semifinal at the Rose Bowl Game Up 29% Year-Over-Year; CFP Semifinal at Sugar Bowl up 19% from Last Season

ESPN's presentation of the College Football Playoff Semifinal at the Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual featuring a thrilling showdown between Oklahoma and Georgia (5 p.m. ET) on New Year's Day delivered an impressive 14.8 overnight (ESPN + ESPN2), up 29% from last season's first CFP Semifinal on the same two networks and 53% from the 2015 season's first CFP Semifinal, also on ESPN and ESPN2. This year's Rose Bowl Game on ESPN-only delivered a 14.2 overnight. The rating for the Georgia victory nearly matched the much-anticipated, record-breaking inaugural CFP Semifinal at the Rose Bowl Game (Jan. 1, 2015), which remains the highest-rated CFP Semifinal to date (15.5 overnight).

The Allstate Sugar Bowl between Clemson and Alabama (9 p.m.) delivered a very strong 12.5 overnight (ESPN and ESPN2), up 19% from last season's second CFP Semifinal, also on ESPN and ESPN2, and 26% from the 2015's season second CFP Semifinal on the same two networks. The ESPN-only presentation of the Sugar Bowl delivered a 12.0 overnight.

CFP Semifinals Average 13.9 Overnight, Up 26% Year-Over-Year; Third and Fourth Highest-Rated CFP Semifinal Ever

This season's two CFP Semifinals averaged a 13.9 overnight, up 26% from last year and 42% from the 2015 season. Individually, both games rank as the third and fourth highest-rated CFP Semifinals ever, trailing only the two record-breaking CFP Semifinals from the inaugural year.

UCF-Auburn Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl Posts Highest-Rated Non-CFP Semifinal Peach Bowl of New Year's Six Era The Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl between UCF and Auburn (12:30 p.m.) earned a 5.1 overnight, the highest-rated non-CFP Semifinal Peach Bowl in the New Year's Six Era. The game was up 28% from the 2015 season game and 55% from the 2014 season game. The 2016 Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl was a CFP Semifinal.

ESPN Earns Highest Rating Ever for New Year's Six
ESPN's presentation of the entire New Year's Six averaged an 8.4 overnight, the highest rated New Year's Six in the system's four-year history. This year's presentation of the six games was up 8% from last year, 15% from the 2015 season and 3% from year one.

Additional Rose Bowl Game and Sugar Bowl Highlights:
Overtime Peaks Rating: The Rose Bowl Game rating peaked as overtime got underway, with a 17.3 rating (9-9:15 p.m.)

· Birmingham: Highest-Rated Local Market for Both College Football Playoff Semifinals
Birmingham was the No. 1 local market for both CFP Semifinal games, delivering a 42.8 rating for the Rose Bowl and 55.7 for the Sugar Bowl. The complete top 10 for both games:
Rose Bowl Game
Rank Local Market
1 42.8 Birmingham
2 35.9 Oklahoma City
3 35.6 Tulsa
4 33.7 Atlanta
5 31.3 Greenville
6 28.7 Columbus
7 23.7 Dayton
8 23.4 Knoxville
9 23.3 Jacksonville
10 21.9 New Orleans
Sugar Bowl
Rank Local Market
1 55.7 Birmingham
2 32.7 Greenville
3 26.3 Atlanta
4 24.2 New Orleans
5 23.4 Nashville
6 23.3 Columbus
7 20.6 Knoxville
8 20.0 Jacksonville
9 19.3 Charlotte
10 18.0 Louisville

Additional New Year's Day Highlights:
· Outback Bowl: Michigan vs. South Carolina (Noon, ESPN2) delivered a 3.1 overnight, up 72% from the 2015 Outback Bowl, the last time the game aired on ESPN2.

· Citrus Bowl Presented by Overton's: LSU vs. Notre Dame (1 p.m., ABC) earned a 5.5 overnight, up 32% from last year's game (LSU vs. Louisville)

The Allstate Sugar Bowl kicked off on ESPN2 and was joined in progress on ESPN at approximately 9:22 p.m. The game was presented on both channels beginning at 9:38 p.m.

Last season's CFP Semifinal Schedule: Chick-Fil-A Peach Bowl at 3 p.m. and PlayStation Fiesta Bowl at 7 p.m. Both games were played on Saturday, Dec. 31, 2016

2015 season's CFP Semifinal Schedule: Capital One Orange Bowl at 4 p.m. and Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic at 8 p.m. both games were played on Thursday, Dec. 31, 2015

New Year's Six: Capital One Orange Bowl and PlayStation Fiesta Bowl Both Post Strong Ratings
ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, December 30.

[via press release from ESPN] New Year's Six: Capital One Orange Bowl and PlayStation Fiesta Bowl Both Post Strong Ratings
· Orange Bowl up 38% from Inaugural New Year's Six, Flat with Last Season's Epic Orange Bowl
· Fiesta Bowl up 28% from Inaugural New Year's Six, Keeps Pace with New Year's Day Fiesta Bowl in Year Two
· New Year's Six Off to Robust Start: Up 42% from System's Similar First Year

ESPN's New Year's Six telecasts continued their strong start on Saturday, Dec. 30, as the ratings for the Capital One Orange Bowl (8 p.m.) and the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl (4 p.m.) followed the trend set on Friday, Dec. 29, with the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic (8:30 p.m.), seeing significant ratings increases from the inaugural Year of the New Year's Six, which also concluded with the Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual and Allstate Sugar Bowl hosting the College Football Playoff Semifinals.

Orange Bowl Continues to Deliver Thrilling Games, High Ratings
The Orange Bowl featuring Wisconsin vs. Miami earned a 6.6 overnight, up 38% from the inaugural New Year's Six Orange Bowl (2014) and was nearly flat with last season's Orange Bowl, which featured a down-to-the-wire Florida State victory over Michigan (6.7 overnight). As a result of the back-to-back years of impressive ratings, the 2017 and 2016 Orange Bowls represent the third and fourth highest-rated non-CFP Semifinals of the New Year's Six era, trailing only the two New Year's Day Rose Bowls (15 games). For the 2015 season, the Orange Bowl was a CFP Semifinal.
Milwaukee Earns No. 1 Local Market

Milwaukee was the No. 1 local market, earning a 20.6 rating. The complete Top 10:
Rank Overnight Market
1 20.6 Milwaukee
2 19.0 Columbus
3 14.9 Birmingham
4 13.2 Greenville
5 11.8 Jacksonville
6 11.6 New Orleans
7 11.3 Atlanta
8 10.8 Miami
9 10.6 Oklahoma City
10.6 Tulsa

The PlayStation Fiesta Bowl featuring Washington vs. Penn State (4 p.m.) earned an 5.9 overnight, up 28% also from inaugural New Year's Six Fiesta Bowl (2014), which was also played at 4 p.m. on a non-CFP Semifinal day (Dec. 31, 2014). This year's Fiesta Bowl rating was less than 5% off of the 2015 season's New Year's Day Fiesta Bowl featuring Ohio State and Notre Dame (6.2 overnight). For the 2016 Season, the Fiesta Bowl was a CFP Semifinal.

Columbus Becomes No. 1 Local Market for Second New Year's Six Game
Columbus was the No. 1 local market for the second consecutive New Year's Six game, after achieving the same status for the Cotton Bowl. The complete top 10 markets:
Rank Overnight Market
1 16.4 Columbus
2 15.4 Seattle
3 11.4 Birmingham
4 11.0 Dayton
5 10.9 Pittsburgh
6 9.7 Philadelphia
7 9.5 Greenville
8 9.3 New Orleans
9.3 Jacksonville
9.3 Cleveland

New Year's Six Off to Strong Start, up 42% from Inaugural Year of the System
Combined with the Cotton Bowl Classic, through the first three games of this season's New Year's Six, ESPN is averaging an 6.1 rating, up 42% from the inaugural year of the New Year's Six. The inaugural year is the only other year of the system in which the CFP Semifinals were not played within those first three games.

Columbus Sets the Pace among Local Markets for New Year's Six Games
Through three games, and on the backbone of being the No.1 local market for two of the three games, Columbus is the No. 1 local market for the New Year's Six. The complete top 10:
Rank Overnight Market
1 26.0 Columbus
2 14.9 Dayton
3 12.9 Birmingham
12.9 Cleveland
5 10.2 Greenville
6 9.5 Milwaukee
7 9.4 New Orleans
9.4 Cincinnati
9 9.3 Seattle
10 9.2 Oklahoma City

Please note: Nielsen reported numbers for all ESPN telecasts reflect TV viewing + Streaming audiences on OTT devices (such as Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, gaming consoles and smart TVs). This new system has been used since Sept. 26.

New Year's Six Continue to set New Bowl Records: Capital One Orange Bowl and PlayStation Fiesta Bowl are Most-Watched, Non-CFP Semifinal Orange and Fiesta Bowl in NY Six Era

· Orange Bowl: More than 11.7 Million Viewers, up 2% from Last Season's Epic Orange Bowl and up 31% from Year One of New Year's Six Era

· Fiesta Bowl: Over 10.1 Million Viewers, Surpasses New Year's Day Ohio State-Notre Dame Fiesta Bowl and up 37% from Inaugural New Year's Six Year

· New Year's Six: ESPN Now up 47% From Similar First Year Schedule; All Three Games are Most-Watched, Non-CFP Semifinal of Its Respective Game
This season's New Year's Six continues to set new individual New Year's Six era bowl records, as the Capital One Orange Bowl (8 p.m.) and the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl (4 p.m.) on Saturday, Dec. 30, were the most-watched non-CFP Semifinal Orange and Fiesta Bowl in the New Year's Six era based on Nielsen's Fast Nationals. The new viewership highs for the Orange and Fiesta Bowl come one day following the Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic delivering the same record non-CFP Semifinal Cotton Bowl audience.

Nearly 12 Million Viewers Tune into Orange Bowl
The Orange Bowl featuring Wisconsin vs. Miami earned a Nielsen reported 11,727,000 viewers based on Fast Nationals, up 2% from last season's Orange Bowl, which featured a thrilling Florida State victory over Michigan (Dec. 30, 2016) and up 31% from the 2014 Orange Bowl (Dec. 31, 2014), the first year of the New Year's Six. The 2015 season's Orange Bowl was a CFP Semifinal.
Washington-Penn State Fiesta Bowl Outdraws New Year's Day Ohio State-Notre Dame Fiesta Bowl
The PlayStation Fiesta Bowl between Washington and Penn State earned 10,167,000 viewers, up 4% from the 2015 season, New Year's Day Fiesta Bowl which featured Notre Dame and Ohio State. The audience for the Nittany Lions' victory was also up 37% from the 2014 Fiesta Bowl (Dec. 31, 2014).
Orange Bowl and Fiesta Bowl Rank Among Most-Watched Non-CFP Semifinals in New Year's Six Era

This year's Orange Bowl is the third most-watched non-CFP Semifinal game of the New Year's Six era, trailing only the two New Year's Day Rose Bowl games. The Huskies-Nittany Lions Fiesta Bowl is the fifth most-watched game in the same category:
Most-Watched Non-CFP Semifinal Games of New Year's Six Era
Rank Viewership Date Matchup Network Game
1 15,740,000 Jan 2, 2017 USC vs. Penn State ESPN Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual
2 13,552,000 Jan 1, 2016 Stanford vs. Iowa ESPN Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual
3 11,727,000 Dec. 30, 2017 Wisconsin vs. Miami ESPN Capital One Orange Bowl
4 11,461,000 Dec. 30, 2016 Michigan vs. Florida State ESPN Capital One Orange Bowl
5 10,167,000 Dec. 30, 2017 Washington vs. Penn State ESPN PlayStation Fiesta Bowl
All audiences numbers are Nielsen-reported

New Year's Six Viewership Now up 47%
Now, halfway through the New Year's Six, ESPN is averaging 10,436,000 viewers a game, up 47% from the inaugural year of the New Year's Six - the only other year of the system in which the CFP Semifinals were not played within those first three games. In addition to the massive audiences for both the Orange and Fiesta Bowl, the Cotton Bowl delivered a similar impressive audience of 9,468,000 viewers for Ohio State's lop-sided victory over USC (Dec. 29, 8:30 p.m.)

ESPN's Coverage of the New Year's Six Continues New Year's Day with Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl and CFP Semifinals

ESPN's coverage of the New Year's Six continues on New Year's Day with the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl between No. 7 Auburn and No. 12 UCF (12:30 p.m.), as well as both College Football Playoff Semifinals: The Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual between No. 2 Oklahoma and No. 3 Georgia (5 p.m.) and the Allstate Sugar Bowl featuring No. 1 Clemson vs. No. 4 Alabama (8:45 p.m.). All New Year's Six games are on televised on ESPN and ESPN Deportes and broadcast on ESPN Radio.ESPN will cover the CFP Semifinals with the MegaCast production, with complete details here.

New Year's Day will also feature the Outback Bowl between Michigan and South Carolina (noon, ESPN2) and the Citrus Bowl Presented by Overton's featuring No. 14 Notre Dame vs. No. 17 LSU (1 p.m., ABC).

Please note: Nielsen reported numbers for all ESPN telecasts reflect TV viewing + Streaming audiences on OTT devices (such as Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, gaming consoles and smart TVs). This new system has been used since Sept. 26.

Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic Delivers Its Highest Non-CFP Semifinal Rating of New Year's Six Era
ESPN spins the numbers for Friday, December 29.

[via press release from ESPN] Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic Delivers Its Highest Non-CFP Semifinal Rating of New Year's Six Era

· Cotton Bowl is Up 84% from Last Season's Game
· Second-Best Non-CFP Semifinal Cotton Bowl on Record across All Networks
· ESPN Televises Three Highest-Rated Bowl Games on Dec. 29 across All Networks
The Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic featuring USC vs. Ohio State (Dec. 29, 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN) delivered a 5.9 overnight, the highest-rated non-CFP Semifinal Cotton Bowl of the New Year's Six Era. The game, which featured Ohio State jumping out to a 24-0 first half lead, is up 84% from last season's New Year's Day Cotton Bowl Classic (Jan. 1, 2017) and up 11% from the Cotton Bowl during the Inaugural year of the New Year's Six (Jan. 1, 2015).

Expanding beyond the New Year's Six era, this year's Cotton Bowl is the bowl game's second best non-CFP Semifinal rating on record, across all networks.

Columbus Easily Earns Best Local Rating
For the Buckeyes' 24-7 victory, Columbus was the highest-rated local market, delivering a 43.3 local rating. Dayton and Cleveland were second and third respectively, earning a 23.9 and 21.0 local rating. The complete top 10:
Rank Overnight Market
1 43.3 Columbus
2 23.9 Dayton
3 21.0 Cleveland
4 13.5 Cincinnati
5 12.6 Birmingham
6 8.9 Knoxville
7 8.4 Oklahoma City
8 8.3 Nashville
9 7.8 Greenville
7.8 Louisville

ESPN Airs Three Highest-Rated College Football Bowl Games on Friday, Dec. 29
Across the entire day, ESPN's three college football bowl telecasts were the three highest-rated bowl games across the sport's four-game slate. The Franklin American Mortgage Music City Bowl featuring Kentucky vs. Northwestern (1 p.m., ESPN) delivered a 3.0 overnight and the Belk Bowl between Wake Forest and Texas A&M (4:30 p.m., ESPN) delivered a 2.0 overnight.
Records for the Cotton Bowl date back to 2005.

The Goodyear Cotton Bowl was a CFP Semifinal for the 2015 college football season.
Please note: Nielsen reported numbers for all ESPN telecast reflect TV viewing + Streaming audiences on OTT devices (such as Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, gaming consoles and smart TVs). This new system has been used since Sept. 26.

Ohio State-USC Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic Delivers Most-Watched Non-CFP Semifinal Cotton Bowl of the New Year's Six Era

The Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic featuring USC vs. Ohio State (Dec. 29, 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN) is the most-watched non-CFP Semifinal Cotton Bowl of the New Year's Six era, as the game had a Nielsen-reported audience of 9,468,000 viewers based on the company's fast nationals data. The viewership for the one-sided, Buckeye's victory was up 74% from last season's New Year's Day Cotton Bowl (Jan. 1, 2017) and up 4% from the Cotton Bowl during the inaugural year of the New Year's Six (Jan. 1, 2015). Beyond the New Year's Six era, the Trojans-Buckeyes Cotton Bowl viewership is the bowl's third best viewership in 20 years, excluding the one year it was a College Football Playoff Semifinal.

As documented this morning in the overnight ratings release, Columbus was the highest-rated local market, followed by Dayton and Cleveland for the game.

ESPN's Bowl Telecast Lead the Way on Friday, Dec. 29
Yesterday, ESPN's three college football bowl telecasts were the three highest-rated bowl games across the sport's four-game slate. They are also expected to be the three most-viewed games across the day when all final numbers are reported early next week.

ESPN's Coverage of the New Year's Six Continues Today and New Year's Day
ESPN's coverage of the New Year's Six continues today with the PlayStation Fiesta Bowl featuring No. 10 Penn State vs. No. 11 Washington (4 p.m.) and the Capital One Orange Bowl between No. 6 Wisconsin and No. 10 Miami (8 p.m.). The Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl between No. 7 Auburn and No. 12 UCF (12:30 p.m.), as well as both College Football Playoff Semifinals: The Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual between No. 2 Oklahoma and No. 3 Georgia (5 p.m.) and the Allstate Sugar Bowl featuring No. 1 Clemson vs. No. 4 Alabama (8:45 p.m.) will take place on New Year's Day. All New Year's Six games are on televised on ESPN and ESPN Deportes and broadcast on ESPN Radio.

The Goodyear Cotton Bowl was a CFP Semifinal for the 2015 college football season.
Please note: Nielsen reported numbers for all ESPN telecast reflect TV viewing + Streaming audiences on OTT devices (such as Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Chromecast, Roku, gaming consoles and smart TVs). This new system has been used since Sept. 26.

ESPN Airs Three Highest-Rated College Football Bowl Games on Thursday, Dec. 28
ESPN spins the numbers for Thursday, December 28.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN Airs Three Highest-Rated College Football Bowl Games on Thursday, Dec. 28
ESPN aired the three highest-rated college football bowl games on Thursday, Dec. 28, a day in which four bowl games were televised across all networks. The Camping World Bowl featuring Virginia Tech vs. Oklahoma State (5:15 p.m. ET, ESPN) earned a 2.8 overnight and the Valero Alamo Bowl between Stanford vs. TCU (9 p.m., ESPN) earned a 2.7 overnight.

The Camping World Bowl was up 8% from last year's same game (then-named Russell Athletic Bowl), while the Alamo Bowl rating was 170% higher than FS1's airing of the Holiday Bowl (9 p.m.) .
The Military Bowl between Virginia and Navy (1:30 p.m., ESPN) earned a 1.4 overnight, the third highest rated game of the day.

ESPN Televises Two Highest-Rated College Football Bowl Games on Wednesday, Dec. 27
ESPN spins the numbers for Wednesday, December 27.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN Televises Two Highest-Rated College Football Bowl Games on Wednesday, Dec. 27
· ESPN's Networks Have Aired Six Highest-Rated Bowl Games of the Season

ESPN televised the two highest-rated college football bowl games Wednesday, Dec. 27, notably beating FOX head-to-head in prime-time. ESPN's airing of the New Era Pinstripe Bowl featuring Iowa vs. Boston College (5:15 p.m. ET) delivered a 2.3 overnight and the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl between Texas and Missouri (9 p.m.) earned a 2.1 overnight, both besting FOX's prime-time telecast of the Foster Farms Bowl (8:30 p.m.) by 21% and 11%, respectively.
Now 22 games into the bowl season, ESPN and ABC have combined to televise the six highest-rated games across all networks. Additionally, ESPN's networks are averaging a 1.4 overnight for 20 bowl games they have televised, equal to that of last season's first 20 bowls games the networks aired.

ESPN and ABC's NBA Christmas Ratings Up 39 Percent from Last Year
ESPN spins the numbers for Monday, December 25.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN and ABC's NBA Christmas Ratings Up 39 Percent From Last Year

ESPN and ABC's NBA Christmas coverage averaged a 3.9 metered market rating across its four games, up 39 percent compared to a 2.8 for its five-game schedule last year, based on metered market ratings from Nielsen.

Highlights:
· The Philadelphia 76ers 105-98 win over the New York Knicks averaged a 2.4 metered market rating, matching last year as ESPN's best 12 p.m. ET (noon) Christmas window since 2012;
· The NBA Finals rematch, in which the Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 99-92, delivered a 5.5 metered market rating, matching the fifth-highest rated early ABC window ever on Christmas;

· The Washington Wizards 111-103 victory over the Boston Celtics generated a 3.7 metered market rating, up nine percent from last year's comparable game - the Chicago Bulls vs. the San Antonio Spurs, which drew a 3.4;

· The Oklahoma City Thunder's 112-107 victory over the Houston Rockets on ABC drew a 4.1 metered market rating, making it the highest-rated prime-time NBA Christmas broadcast since 2003.

"Nature Boy" 30 for 30 on Ric Flair Averaged 1.8 Million Viewers; Highest Rated Cable Program for 18-49 Demo
ESPN spins the numbers for Tuesday, November 7.

[via press release from ESPN] "Nature Boy" 30 for 30 on Ric Flair Averaged 1.8 Million Viewers; Highest Rated Cable Program for 18-49 Demo

ESPN Films' "Nature Boy" 30 for 30 documentary, which premiered Tuesday night, averaged 1.8 million viewers according to Nielsen, a 78% increase from ESPN's 2017 30 for 30 premieres to date (1.0 million). The film on wrestling legend Ric Flair was the highest rated original show on cable that night for adults 18-49. Additionally, "Nature Boy" was the most social program of the day with 238k Twitter interactions.

"The response to the film has been overwhelming," says 30 for 30 Executive Producer John Dahl. "The viewership totals just drive home the enormous interest that exists in Ric Flair's life story, regardless of whether you're a wrestling fan."

"Nature Boy" ranks as the most-viewed film since last year's post-Heisman offering, "Catholics vs. Convicts" (2.1 million viewers).

College Football Week 10: ESPN Airs Second-Highest Game across All Networks, Top Game on Cable
ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, November 4.

[via press release from ESPN]
     College Football Week 10: ESPN Airs Second-Highest Game across All Networks, Top Game on Cable
· Ohio State at Iowa on ESPN:
· Cable and Broadcast's Highest-Rated Game Across All Networks in Competitive Late Afternoon Window

· Beats FS1's Airing of Bedlam Game by 47% Head-to-Head
· ESPN, ABC, and ESPN2: Up Year-Over-Year in Majority of Game Windows
· ESPN and ABC: Air Four of Top 7 Highest-Rated Games Across All Networks
ESPN aired the second highest-rated game of week 10 across all networks while simultaneously delivering the top-rated game across all broadcast and cable in the competitive late afternoon time slot and the top game on cable in week 10 overall, beating FS1's telecast of the Bedlam game by nearly 50%. ESPN also experienced year-over-year increases in the majority of its game windows, as did ABC and ESPN2. Across the entire slate, ESPN and ABC combined to air four of the seven highest-rated games across all networks.

Hawkeyes Upset of Buckeyes Earns Second Best Rating of Week 10, No. 1 on Cable
Ohio State at Iowa (3:30 p.m. ET, ESPN) delivered a 2.5 overnight, the second best rating of the week across all networks and the highest-rated game on cable of the week. The Hawkeyes upset of the Buckeyes is up 56% for ESPN from last season's comparable window (Maryland at Michigan) and, yesterday, beat FS1 by 47% in that same time slot (Oklahoma at Oklahoma State).
Saturday Night Football Among Week's Top Games, Beats FOX Head-to-Head

Led by the Hawkeyes-Buckeyes game, ESPN and ABC combined to air four of the top seven games across all networks, including ABC's Saturday Night Football featuring Virginia Tech at Miami (8 p.m). The Hokies-Hurricanes matchup earned a 2.2, beating Fox' Big Ten game head-to-head in prime time by 22%. The win keeps the Hurricanes unbeaten, setting up a monster week 11 Saturday Night Football matchup: No. 3 Notre Dame vs. undefeated Miami (8-0).

Additional ESPN Week 10 Highlights:
· Clemson at NC State (3:30 p.m., ABC): 2.0 rating, an increase of 11% from the comparable ABC window last season (regional action: Syracuse at Clemson or Oklahoma State at Kansas State).
· Wisconsin at Indiana (Noon, ABC): 1.9 overnight, up 6% from the 2016 comparable window (Wisconsin at Northwestern)

· Auburn at Texas A&M (Noon, ESPN): 1.6 rating, an increase of 23% from last year's similar window (Vanderbilt at Auburn).

· Arizona at USC (10:45 p.m., ESPN): 1.3 overnight, beating FS1's final game window of day by 117%

· Texas at TCU (7 p.m., ESPN): 1.2 overnight, up 9% year-over-year (Oregon at USC)

· ESPN2: The network's noon (Florida at Missouri) and 3:30 p.m. windows (Iowa State at West Virginia) saw a ratings increase of 20% and 33% year-over-year, respectively, while its Friday night telecast (Memphis at Tulsa) was up 25% year-over-year.


ABC's "Saturday Night Football": Michigan State at Michigan Is Highest-Rated Game of Week 6 Across All Networks
ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, October 7.

[via press release from ESPN]
     ABC'S Saturday Night Football: Michigan State at Michigan is Highest-Rated Game of Week 6 Across All Networks

· SNF Beats Fox by 179% in Prime Time, Grows Year-Over-Year Audience
· Detroit Earns Second Best Local Rating on Record for the Spartans-Wolverines Matchup on ESPN/ABC

· Alabama at Texas A&M: ESPN's Highest-Rated Saturday Game in 2017 Season
ABC's Saturday Night Football featuring Michigan State at Michigan (7:30 p.m. ET) earned a 3.9 Nielsen overnight, the highest-rated college football game of week 6 across all networks. The overnight for the Big Ten rivalry game was 179% higher than Fox's prime time game and 95% and 86%, respectively, higher than Fox's afternoon games, while also earning a 44% better rating than CBS.

For the sixth time in the six weeks of the college football season, Saturday Night Football will be the most-watched prime time game of the week when viewership is reported on Tuesday. Additional highlights:
· SNF Ratings Grow: The Spartans' 14-10 victory is up 22% from last year's Saturday Night Football contest. Now, six weeks into the season, the franchise has seen year-over-year increases in five of those weeks.
  
· Michigan's Last Minute Drive Peaks Ratings: As Michigan drove for a potential game-winning touchdown, the rating peaked for the game at a 5.5 overnight (11-11:15 p.m.)

· Detroit Tunes In: Detroit was the No. 1 local market, with an impressive 28.4 rating. The local number is the market's second best on record for a Michigan State-Michigan matchup on an ESPN network, trailing only the 2013 matchup (29.2) The complete top 5 local markets for the 2017 game are:
Rank Rating Market
1 28.4 Detroit
2 16.1 Columbus
3 9.2 Dayton
4 6.1 Cincinnati
5 6.0 Cleveland
ESPN Leads the Way on Cable; Alabama-Texas A&M Ties as Second Highest Game Across All Networks

Alabama at Texas A&M (7:15 p.m.) drew a 2.7 Nielsen overnight, tying as both the second-highest overnight of the week across all networks and as the best overnight for an SEC game in week 6. The overnight for the Crimson Tide victory outdrew all seven games on Fox Sports networks in week 6 and was ESPN's best overnight for a Saturday game this season (22 games). The matchup was also up 13% from last year's similar game, which featured Alabama at Arkansas.

Led by the Crimson Tide-Aggies, all four games that aired on ESPN on Saturday were the highest-rated cable games of week 6. Miami at FSU (3:30 p.m. on ESPN), earned a 2.0 Nielsen rating for the game and peaked at a 3.9 Nielsen overnight as the Hurricanes were driving and scored the game winning touchdown (7:15 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.). Georgia vs. Vanderbilt (noon on ESPN) earned a 1.3 overnight, up 30% from last year's similar game (Auburn vs. Mississippi State) and Cal vs. Washington earned a 1.1 overnight, flat with last year's same game (Washington State vs. Stanford).
ESPN announced a new reporting system, which began on Sept. 25. More details are here.
Local ratings date back to 2001

College Football Week 5: ABC's "Saturday Night Football" Earns Best Overnight of the Week
ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, September 30.

[via press release from ESPN] College Football Week 5: ABC's "Saturday Night Football" Earns Best Overnight of the Week; ESPN's Networks Deliver Five of Six Highest-Rated Games and Top 6 on Cable
· SNF Outpaces Fox by 67% in Prime Time on Saturday
· USC-Washington State: Cable's Highest Overnight of the Week, Among ESPN'S Best Friday Night Games on Record

· Cougars Victory Delivers a Seattle Local Market Record
· Vanderbilt-Florida: ESPN's Highest-Rated Afternoon Game of the Season
ESPN's Networks earned college football highest ratings in week 5, according to Nielsen overnights, as ABC televised the highest-rated game of the week and ESPN/ABC combined for five of the six highest rated games of the week across all networks. On cable, ESPN's networks once again set the pace, delivering the six highest overnights among all networks.

ABC's Saturday Night Football Continues Season Trend
ABC's Saturday Night Football featuring Clemson at Virginia Tech (8 p.m.) earned a 3.0 overnight, the best among all networks in week 5. The premier college football franchise's overnight outpaced Fox' primetime game by 67% and CBS' afternoon game by 15%. As a result, SNF is projected to be the most-watched prime time game of the week for the fifth time in the five weeks of the college football season.

Friday Night Lights: USC-Washington State Third Best Overnight Among All Networks in Week 5; Impressive Local Ratings in Seattle and Los Angeles

ESPN's Friday night matchup featuring USC at Washington State (10:30 p.m.) earned a 2.2 overnight, cable's best overnight of week five and the third best overnight among all networks in week 5. Additional highlights:
· Pac-12 Delivers in Late Night Window: In consecutive years, ESPN has now televised two of the three highest-rated late night Friday night games (9 p.m. start or later) on record as the Trojans-Cougars matchup joins Stanford at Washington (2.4 overnight) last season in the top 3*.
· Seattle Sets New Cougars Record: Seattle earned a 9.0 local rating, the No. 1 market for the game and the market's best for a Washington State game on ESPN. Los Angeles was the second highest rated market, earning a 6.0, the market's best ever for a Friday night game on ESPN. The complete top 5:
Rank Local Rating Market
1 9.0 Seattle
2 6.1 Los Angeles
3 5.7 Birmingham
4 4.6 Portland
5 3.6 Oklahoma City

· Strong Ratings throughout Second Half: The dramatic game held the audience well, as the final five quarter hours (12:45- 1 a.m., 1-1:15 a.m., 1:15- 1:30 a.m., 1:30-1:45 a.m., and 1:45-2 a.m.) each earned a 2.1 rating.

· Doubleheader on ESPN Dominates the Night: Miami at Duke (7 p.m.), also on ESPN, led into the Pac-12 showdown, with the ACC matchup earning a 1.3 overnight. The overnight for the Pac-12 game was 633% and the ACC game was 333% better than FS1 single game on Friday night.
ESPN Leads the Way on Cable, See Growth in Multiple Windows

Led by the Trojans-Cougars, ESPN's networks earned the six highest overnights among cable networks in week 5, including earning its best afternoon overnight of the season with Vanderbilt-Florida earning a 2.0 overnight. The overnight for the Commodores-Gators matchup is up 43% over last year's comparable game (Notre Dame at Syracuse) and had a better overnight than both games on Fox.

Ole Miss at Alabama earned a 1.6 overnight and Mississippi State at Auburn had a 1.4 overnight, rounding out the SEC tripleheader on ESPN. The Rebels-Crimson Tide game was up 100% over last year's late night ESPN game (Arizona at UCLA).

Of note, Troy at LSU (7 p.m.) on ESPNU earned a 0.4 rating, tied for the eighth best rating on an ESPN cable network this week, but matches the best overnight on FS1 for the week.
Please note: Florida State at Wake Forest (2.1), and Northwestern at Wisconsin (2.0) on ABC, in addition to the aforementioned games, were among the top rated games of the weekend.
*Boise State at Nevada on Nov. 26, 2010 earned a 3.5 overnight, the best Friday night late night game on ESPN on record

US Open Women's Final: Overnight Rating for Match Up 36%, ESPN's Best Ever
ESPN further spins the numbers for Saturday, September 9.

[via press release from ESPN] US Open Women's Final: Overnight Rating for Match up 36%, ESPN's Best Ever
· Total Streaming Viewers Soared 71% for Battle of Young American Women
Saturday's US Open Women's Championship on ESPN - a battle of young American women in which unseeded Sloane Stephens convincingly triumphed over No. 15 Madison Key 6-3, 6-0 - earned a 1.9 overnight rating in the metered markets for the match portion of the three-hour telecast, 36% higher than last year's women's final from New York. It was the highest overnight rating for the match in the three years ESPN has held exclusivity for the US Open - first ball to last ball coverage. (Notably, because of the hurricane, tennis strongholds Miami and Ft. Myers are not included.)

The rating for the match peaked at its conclusion, the crowning of a new Major champion. From 5:15 - 5:30 p.m. ET, ESPN earned a 2.2 rating.

The highest-rated markets were Norfolk-Portsmoutth-Newport News (3.3), Washington, DC (3.2), Birmingham (2.9), West Palm Beach-Ft. Pierce (2.8), and New York (2.7).
In fact, the match out-rated two college football games on Saturday on Fox: Nebraska-Oregon and, in prime time, Stanford-USC.

The three components of streaming the match were also significantly higher than previously. The total number of unique viewers was up 71%, the total minutes watched was up 15% and the average minute audience was up 38% to a new high for 2015-17.

ESPN's Total Average Audience for US Open up 11% after 11 Days
The total average audience for ESPN's exclusive coverage of the US Open from New York through Thursday, Sept. 7, was up 11% to 952,000 viewers on average, compared to 856,000 for the first 11 days of last year's event. The increase includes a 50% rise in the audience for streaming.

ABC's "Saturday Night Football" - Oklahoma at Ohio State: 5.3 Overnight, the Highest of Week 2 Across All Networks
ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, September 9.

[via press release from ESPN]
     ABC's "Saturday Night Football" - Oklahoma at Ohio State: 5.3 Overnight, the Highest of Week 2 Across All Networks; ESPN's Networks Air Four of the Five Highest Overnights Among All Networks
· ESPN Network's Air Highest Overnight In Each Game Window and Best in Primetime By More than 75%
· Sooners-Buckeyes: Best September Non-Opening Week Overnight on ABC in Seven Years, Up 33% from 2016 Game on FOX
· Auburn at Clemson: Best Cable Overnight and Higher than Two Games on FOX

ESPN's networks aired four of the five highest overnights and the best overnight in the individual noon, late afternoon and primetime game windows across all networks during college football's week 2. ABC's Saturday Night Football between Oklahoma and Ohio State (8 p.m. ET) earned the week's highest overnight with a 5.3, while also adding a streaming audience of 170,000 in the average minute. On a night with a number of prime time options, ABC's audience outpaced NBC by 77% and FOX by 194%

Additional Oklahoma-Ohio State Highlights:
· The overnight for the Sooners victory is ABC's highest for a non-opening week September game since 2011 and the streaming average audience is the best ever in the same category.

· The overnight and streaming average minute audience is up 39% and 98%, respectively, from SNF's week 2 telecast last season (Virginia Tech vs. Tennessee).

· The 2017 Sooners-Buckeyes overnight is up 33% from the 2016 matchup between the two schools which aired on FOX.

· Columbus was the No. 1 local market with a 39.6 rating. The top 10 markets:
Rank Local Rating Market
1 39.6 Columbus
2 33.4 Oklahoma City
3 25.3 Tulsa
4 22.6 Dayton
5 19.5 Cleveland-Akron
6 11.8 Cincinnati
7 10.0 Austin
8 9.9 Detroit
9 7.6 Birmingham
10 6.9 Nashville

Auburn at Clemson on ESPN is Cable's Best Overnight of Week 2, Out Paces Both of FOX's Games
Auburn at Clemson (7 p.m., ESPN) earned a 2.0 overnight and a streaming audience of 113,000 in the average minute, setting the pace among all games on cable in week 2. Additionally, the overnight rating between the battle of the Tigers outdrew all games on FOX Sports and CBS. Overall, all eight games on ESPN and ESPN2 had higher overnights than the two games which aired on FS1.
Additional highlights:
· The overnight and streaming audience for Clemson's victory was up 43% and 61% respectively from ESPN's week 2 primetime telecast (Arkansas at TCU).

· Stanford at USC (8:30 p.m. on FOX) was down 14% from the same 2016 matchup which aired on ABC in prime time (Sept. 17 at 8 p.m.)

· Cincinnati at Michigan (noon) and Pittsburgh at Penn State (3:30 p.m.), both on ABC, where the two highest overnights in their game windows across all networks, earning a 2.8 and 2.7, respectively. The overnight for the Wolverines audience was up 27% from last season's same window on ABC, which featured the Wolverines hosting UCF.

Please note: All ESPN streaming information is preliminary and is expected to change with further procession. Final numbers will be available this week.


Florida State vs. Alabama: Monster 7.3 Overnight, ABC/ESPN Best Kickoff Weekend Overnight on Record
ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, September 2.

[via press release from ESPN] Florida State vs. Alabama: Monster 7.3 Overnight, ABC/ESPN Best Kickoff Weekend Overnight On Record; Streaming Audience Shatters Previous High

· Michigan vs. Florida: Standout 5.0 Overnight, ABC/ESPN Highest Rated Non-Prime-Time Kickoff Weekend Game Ever; Streaming Audience Sets Same Record

· College Football Week 1: ESPN's Networks Have Aired the Highest-Rated Game Each Day across All Networks; Average Overnight Saturday on ESPN/ABC was 180% Higher than FS1/FOX
· College Football + US Open: Remarkable Usage for ESPN's Streaming

College football's five-day kickoff weekend (Aug. 31-Sept. 4) continues to be record-setting for ESPN's networks as ABC aired both the highest-rated kickoff weekend game ever on record and the highest-rated non-primetime kickoff game ever on Saturday, while the two individual games shattered multiple streaming records in the process. Yesterday's success has created a kickoff weekend trend for ESPN's networks, as the network's MegaCast production for Ohio State at Indiana on Thursday smashed records and ESPN's first Friday night telecast of the season saw significant growth. As a result, ESPN's networks have aired the highest-rated game in each of the first three days of the kickoff weekend.

Florida State vs. Alabama: ABC/ESPN Highest-Rated Kickoff Weekend Game On Record; Michigan vs. Florida: Best Non-Prime-time Kickoff Weekend Record

ABC's Saturday Night Football's telecast of the historic, unprecedented matchup of No. 3 Florida State vs. No. 1 Alabama earned a monster 7.3 overnight rating and had a streaming audience of 237,000 viewers in the average minute becoming ESPN's networks highest-rated and most-streamed kickoff weekend game on record. Michigan vs. Florida, also on ABC (3:30 p.m.), earned a 5.0 overnight and had a streaming audience of 182,000 viewers in the average minute, becoming the highest-rated and most-streamed non-prime time kickoff game on record.

The average minute streaming audience for Alabama's victory is ESPN's second most-streamed regular season game ever, surpassing every September and October game ESPN/ABC has ever televised and trailing only last season's double overtime Michigan-Ohio State game all-time. The streaming audience is up 134% from ABC's Saturday Night Football first game last season (USC vs. Alabama).

The average minute streaming audience for the Wolverines win is ESPN/ABC's second best Saturday kickoff weekend audience ever, trailing only the aforementioned Florida State-Alabama game and up 21% from the same time slot last year (Wisconsin vs. LSU).

The overnight TV rating for the Alabama victory is up 49% from last season's ABC Saturday Night Football opener, with the Wolverines game showing window growth year over year as well.
ESPN Obliterates the Competition on the Season's First Saturday

College football's first full Saturday saw ESPN's networks generate 78% of the gross overnight rating points across all rated-networks. The average overnight rating for the seven games on ESPN/ABC was a 2.8 overnight, while Fox/FS1 averaged a 1.0 overnight for its four games. Comparing the four games on ESPN to the four games on FS1 + FOX Sports, ESPN alone beat them in gross rating points (4.1 to 3.9) without factoring in ABC. Also, ABC aired the three highest-rated games on Saturday, with the Akron at Penn State game (noon), joining the aforementioned two record-breaking games.

Top Markets:
· Florida State vs. Alabama:
Rank Local Rating Market
1 46.6 Birmingham
2 21.6 Jacksonville
3 18.4 Columbus, OH
4 17.2 Nashville
5 16.6 Knoxville
6 15.9 Greenville
7 15.2 Atlanta
8 13.6 Orlando
9 13.1 Memphis
10 12.8 West Palm Beach
Birmingham's local rating is the market's second best ever for an ABC regular season college football game
· Michigan vs. Florida:
Rank Local Rating Market
1 18.5 Jacksonville
2 16.2 Birmingham
3 15.7 Columbus, OH
4 15.4 Detroit
5 12.5 Knoxville
6 11.5 Tampa-St. Pete
7 11.4 Orlando
8 11.2 Nashville
9 9.7 West Palm Beach-Ft. Pierce
10 9.5 Dayton
College Football and US Open Result in ESPN's Extraordinary Streaming Numbers
The first Saturday of the college football season, combined with US Open coverage, resulted in one of the largest days ever for ESPN streaming usage, as 3,600,000 unique users viewed 255,000,000 minutes, good for third in both categories in any single day.
*Overnight data exists back to 2004 for ABC and 2001 for ESPN.

Kickoff Weekend Continues: Ranked Matchup Between Big 12 and ACC on Special Sunday Night Presentation; No. 25 Tennessee Highlights ESPN's Traditional Labor Day Night Matchup
For the second straight year, ABC televises a special Sunday night prime-time game to commemorate the season's first week: the only top-25 matchup of the night features the Big 12 and the ACC when No. 22 West Virginia plays No. 21 Virginia Tech (Tonight at 7:30 p.m.) from FedExField in Landover, Md. Steve Levy, Brian Griese and Todd McShay will be on the call, as they begin their second season working together.

ESPN will conclude its opening week slate with its traditional Labor Day Night Game, this year featuring the second 2017 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game: No. 25 Tennessee vs. Georgia Tech (8 p.m. on ESPN) in an SEC-ACC matchup. The Volunteers-Yellow Jackets matchup is also from Mercedes-Benz Stadium, as ESPN will produce the stadium's first two college football games in a 48-hour span. Herbstreit concludes his stretch with the call, and Rece Davis will be on the play-by-play as Chris Fowler will return to New York City for the US Open. Maria Taylor will be on the sidelines.
Florida State vs. Alabama: More Than 12.5 Million Viewers, the Most-Watched Kickoff Weekend Game On Record Across All Networks; ABC Wins Sunday Night's Head-to Head Competition with Fox

· Seminoles-Crimson Tide's Massive Audience Surpasses Last Season's Notre Dame-Texas Viewership By an Impressive 13%
· ESPN's Networks Have Aired Top-Rated Game All Four Nights of Kickoff Weekend
ESPN's college football kickoff weekend (Aug 31 - Sept. 4) success continues as Florida State vs. Alabama on Saturday is now officially the most-watched college football opening weekend game on record across all networks and, on Sunday night, ABC beat Fox head-to-head by a substantial 32%. Factoring in last night's rating's results, ESPN's networks have aired the top rated game each of the first four nights of college football's kickoff weekend.

ABC's Saturday Night Football Opens the Season with Most-Watched Kickoff Game on Record
ESPN's networks have set a new college football kickoff weekend total live audience viewership record as ABC's Saturday Night Football telecast of the historic matchup between Florida State vs. Alabama (Sept. 2 at 8 p.m.) delivered a total live audience of 12,560,000 viewers, now the most-watched kickoff weekend game ever across all networks -- ESPN's and competitors - surpassing last season's Notre Dame at Texas game which also aired on ABC.
Seminoles-Crimson Tide: A Top 5 Most-Watched Regular Season Game on ABC Since 2006; Key Demos Up More than 50%

In addition to setting new kickoff weekend records, the total live audience for Alabama's victory is a top 5 regular season college football audience on ABC since 2006. On television, the Seminoles-Crimson Tide saw key demos (males: 18-34, 18-49 & 25-54 and persons: 18-49 and 25-54) up more than 50% compared to last season's first ABC Saturday Night Football game of the season (USC vs. Alabama), while this season's total live audience was up 56% overall to the same game. Saturday night's TV audience peaked at 14,118,000 viewers (9 - 9:30 p.m.).

ESPN's Networks: Set a New Kickoff Weekend Viewership Record for Third Consecutive Year
The massive total live audience for Alabama's victory surpassed last season's kickoff weekend double-overtime thriller between Notre Dame and Texas by a remarkable 13%. Now, ESPN's networks have set a new, single game total live audience viewership record for three consecutive kickoff weekends:

Top Three Most-Watched Opening Weekend Games Across All Networks
Rank Total Live Audience Game Network Date
1 12,560,000 Florida State vs. Alabama ABC Sept. 2, 2017
2 11,139,000 Notre Dame at Texas ABC Sept. 4, 2016
3 10,760,000 Ohio State at Virginia Tech ESPN Sept. 7, 2015
Sunday Night: ABC Televises Only Top 25 Game of the Night, Wins the Night vs. Fox; Kickoff Weekend Success Continues

ABC's Sunday night Top 25 telecast of West Virginia vs. Virginia Tech (Sept. 3 at 7:30 p.m.) drew a 2.9 overnight rating, out-rating the college football game on Fox by 32%. Starting with the MegaCast for Ohio State at Indiana on Thursday night, and continuing Friday night with Wisconsin, one of the Big Ten's marquee teams, Saturday night's unprecedented Seminoles-Crimson Tide telecast and Sunday's rivalry game, ESPN's networks have aired the highest-rated game each night of kickoff weekend. ESPN concludes kickoff weekend tonight when No. 25 Tennessee plays Georgia Tech (8 p.m. on ESPN) in the second 2017 Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game from Mercedes-Benz Stadium in Atlanta.

Records date back to 1990 for ESPN and 1996 for ABC. Competitive networks include CBS, Fox, FS1, FX, NBCSN and TBS. Data goes back as far to 1996 with CBS. TV data based on Fast Nationals.

ESPN's NBA Draft Ratings Up 13 Percent
ESPN spins the numbers for Thursday, June 22.

[via press release from ESPN] ESPN's NBA Draft Ratings Up 13 Percent
Matches Third-Highest Rated NBA Draft Ever on ESPN
ESPN Sets NBA Draft Streaming Records

ESPN's coverage of the 2017 NBA Draft presented by State Farm averaged a 2.7 metered market rating, up 13 percent from a 2.4 in 2016, according to Nielsen. It matches the third-highest rated NBA Draft on ESPN. The telecast peaked with a 4.0 rating from 8:15-8:30 p.m. ET.

Additionally, ESPN set several NBA Draft streaming records on Thursday. The NBA Draft drew an average minute streaming audience of 135,200 viewers, up 55 percent from 2016, and 1,153,500 unique viewers, up 107 percent from last year. ESPN delivered 39,215,000 total minutes streamed for the NBA Draft.

The NBA Draft on ESPN generated a 5.3 rating in the Louisville market, making it the top local market. The rest of the top 10 markets include: Charlotte (4.7); Indianapolis (4.4); Norfolk (4.0); Oklahoma City (3.9); Raleigh-Durham (3.8); Los Angeles (3.8); Las Vegas (3.8); Richmond (3.7); San Antonio (3.6).

ESPN's NBA Draft telecast is the latest live event / event series in June to generate ratings or viewership increases on ESPN television and streaming platforms. In addition to the NBA Draft, the NBA Finals, Sunday Night Baseball, the College World Series and the Women's College World Series have all generated increases this month.

NBA Finals on ABC: Highest-Rated Game 5 Since 1998: 16.0 Metered Market Rating
ESPN spins the numbers for Monday, June 12.

[via press release from ESPN]
     NBA Finals on ABC: Highest-Rated Game 5 Since 1998: 16.0 Metered Market Rating
Game 5 Rating Up 13 Percent from 2016 & 2015

ABC Broadcast Peaked with 18.8 Rating; Record NBA Finals Game 5 Streaming Audience
NBA Finals Game 5 on ABC - the Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers to win the NBA Championship - generated a 16.0 metered market rating, making it the highest-rated NBA Finals Game 5 since 1998, according to Nielsen. The ABC broadcast peaked with an 18.8 rating from 11:30-11:45 p.m. ET. The Game 5 rating was up 13 percent from Game 5 in both 2016 and 2015.
Additionally, last night's Game 5 was the most-streamed NBA Finals Game 5 ever and the second-most streamed NBA game ever. It generated an average minute streaming audience of 537,000 viewers, with 2,144,200 unique viewers and 92,377,200 total minutes streamed. The only NBA game to have generated a larger streaming audience was Game 7 in 2016.

The NBA Finals on ABC is expected to win the night across all of television for the 60th consecutive time. In the San Francisco-Oakland market, the Game 5 broadcast delivered a 39.6 metered market rating and in the Cleveland market it generated a 37.1 rating. The other top local markets include: Columbus (23.3); Sacramento (21.2); Atlanta (21.0); Miami (20.6); Memphis (20.1); Los Angeles (19.1); Chicago (18.6); Richmond (17.7).

ESPN will exclusively televise the 2017 NBA Draft presented by State Farm on Thursday, June 22, at 7 p.m. ET.


NBA Finals on ABC: Game 4 Up Five Percent From Last Year With 12.6 Metered Market Rating
ESPN spins the numbers for Friday, June 9.

[via press release from ESPN] NBA Finals on ABC: Game 4 Up Five Percent From Last Year With 12.6 Metered Market Rating
2017 NBA Finals Metered Market Ratings Average Up Five Percent From 2016 Through Four Games
ESPN Sets NBA Finals Game 4 Streaming Records

Game 4 of the NBA Finals on ABC - the Cleveland Cavaliers defeated the Golden State Warriors 137-116 - delivered a 12.6 metered market rating, up five percent from a 12.0 for last year's Game 4, according to Nielsen. The broadcast peaked with a 14.9 rating from 11:15-11:30 p.m. ET.
The 2017 NBA Finals - the Warriors currently lead the Cavaliers 3-1 - is averaging a 12.8 metered market rating through four games. This is up five percent from a 12.2 in 2016.

ESPN set multiple NBA Finals Game 4 streaming records last night. The game delivered 71,592,200 total minutes streamed, 1,901,000 unique viewers and an average minute streaming audience of 374,800 viewers - all Game 4 records.

The NBA Finals on ABC is expected to win the night for the 59th consecutive time. Last night's broadcast delivered a 35.5 rating in the Cleveland market and a 32.1 rating in the San Francisco-Oakland market. The other top local markets include: Columbus (18.9); Sacramento (16.8); Memphis (16.5); Atlanta (16.0); San Antonio (15.6); Miami (15.4); Birmingham (14.7); Chicago (14.3).
The NBA Finals on ABC continues with Game 5 on Monday, June 12, at 9 p.m. ET (ABC coverage starting at 8:30 p.m.). The NBA Finals is also available on ESPN Radio, ESPN Deportes and the ESPN App.

2017 NBA Finals On ABC: Most-Watched Since 1998 Through Four Games
Game 4 Draws Total Live Audience of 19,387,000 Viewers, Up 15 Percent from Last Year
Game 4 Peaked with 22,450,000 Viewers

The 2017 NBA Finals on ABC - the Golden State Warriors lead the Cleveland Cavaliers 3-1 - is the most-watched NBA Finals since 1998 through four games, according to Fast Nationals from Nielsen. The series is averaging a total live audience (television plus streaming) of 19,788,000 average viewers, up 12 percent from 17,696,000 viewers in 2016. On ABC, the series is averaging 19,380,000 viewers (P2+), plus an average minute streaming audience of 408,000 viewers.

Friday night's Game 4 broadcast on ABC - the Cavaliers defeated the Warriors 137-116 - delivered a total live audience of 19,387,000 average viewers up 15 percent from a total live audience of 16,867,000 viewers in 2016. On ABC, Game 4 delivered 19,012,000 average viewers (P2+) with an additional average minute streaming audience of 375,000 viewers. Game 4 peaked on ABC with 22,450,000 viewers from 11-11:30 p.m. ET.

The NBA Finals on ABC won the night across all of television for the 59th consecutive time. For additional information, including metered market ratings and Game 4 streaming records, visit ESPN Media Zone to access the press release from earlier today.

The NBA Finals on ABC continues with Game 5 on Monday, June 12, at 9 p.m. (ABC coverage starts at 8:30 p.m.). Game 5 is also available on ESPN Radio, ESPN Deportes and the ESPN App.

NBA Finals on ABC: Game 3 Up 14 Percent From Last Year With 13.4 Metered Market Rating
ESPN spins the numbers for Wednesday, June 7.

[via press release from ESPN] NBA Finals on ABC: Game 3 Up 14 Percent From Last Year With 13.4 Metered Market Rating
Most-Streamed NBA Finals Game 3 Ever: Nearly Two Million Unique Viewers
Game 3 of the 2017 NBA Finals - the Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 118-113 in an instant classic - delivered a 13.4 metered market rating on ABC, according to Nielsen. This was up 14 percent from an 11.8 in 2016. Last night's broadcast peaked on ABC with a 15.6 rating from 11:30-11:45 p.m. ET.

Through three games, the 2017 NBA Finals on ABC is averaging a 12.8 metered market rating, up four percent from a 12.3 in 2016.

In addition, the NBA Finals on ABC continue to produce record streaming numbers, including several for Game 3. On Wednesday, nearly two million unique viewers (1,964,000) streamed the game with an average minute audience of 440,700 viewers. There were also 76,680,000 total minutes streamed - all records for an NBA Finals Game 3.

The NBA Finals on ABC is expected to win the night across all of television for the 58th consecutive time. The broadcast drew a 35.3 in the Cleveland market and a 32.7 in the San Francisco-Oakland market. The rest of the top 10 local markets include: Columbus (20.6); Memphis (19.4); Atlanta (18.6); Miami (17.8); Sacramento (17.1); Richmond (16.3); Charlotte (15.1); Birmingham (14.8).
The NBA Finals on ABC continues with Game 4 on Friday, June 9, at 9 p.m. (coverage starts at 8:30 p.m.). The Golden State Warriors will attempt to become the first team in NBA history to go undefeated throughout the NBA Playoffs. The game is also available on ESPN Radio, ESPN Deportes and the ESPN App.

NBA Finals on ABC: Game 2 Up Seven Percent From Last Year With 12.7 Metered Market Rating

ESPN spins the numbers for Sunday, June 4.

[via press release from ESPN] NBA Finals on ABC: Game 2 Up Seven Percent From Last Year With 12.7 Metered Market Rating
· 2017 NBA Finals Ratings on ABC Up From 2016 through Two Games
· ESPN Sets More NBA Finals Streaming Records

The 2017 NBA Finals on ABC - the Golden State Warriors defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 132-113 - delivered a 12.7 metered market rating, up seven percent compared to an 11.9 for NBA Finals Game 2 in 2016. Sunday's Game 2 broadcast peaked with a 14.7 rating from 10-10:15 p.m. ET, according to Nielsen.

Through two games, the 2017 NBA Finals on ABC is averaging a 12.6 metered market rating, up from a 12.5 last year, according to Nielsen. The NBA Finals on ABC is expected to win the night across all of television for the 57th consecutive time.

Additionally, ESPN delivered another record NBA Finals streaming audience across metrics on Sunday. Game 2 drew an average minute audience of 435,800 viewers, 1,774,600 unique viewers and 71,030,300 total minutes streamed - all records for an NBA Finals Game 2.

Sunday's Game 2 broadcast averaged a 32.4 rating in the Cleveland market and a 31.1 in the San Francisco-Oakland market. The rest of the top ten local markets include Columbus (19.5), Miami (17.7), Memphis (17.5), Atlanta (17.0), Sacramento (15.5), Richmond (15.3), San Antonio (14.6) and Birmingham (14.0).

The 2017 NBA Finals on ABC and the ESPN App continues with Game 3 on Wednesday, June 7, at 9 p.m. (coverage starting at 8:30 p.m.)

2017 NBA Finals on ABC: Most-Watched Since 1998 Through Two Games
Most-Watched NBA Finals Game 2 Since 1998: Total Live Audience of 20.1 Million Viewers
The 2017 NBA Finals on ABC - the Golden State Warriors lead the Cleveland Cavaliers 2-0 - is the most-watched since 1998, through two games, according to Fast Nationals from Nielsen. The series is averaging a total live audience (television plus streaming) of 19,602,000 average viewers, up five percent from 18,641,000 viewers in 2016. It is averaging 19,192,000 viewers (P2+) on ABC and an average minute streaming audience of 410,000 viewers.

Sunday's NBA Finals Game 2, in which the Warriors defeated the Cavaliers 132-113, generated a total live audience of 20,117,000 average viewers, making it the most-watched NBA Finals Game 2 since 1998. It was up 13 percent from 17,756,000 average viewers in 2016. The Game 2 broadcast averaged 19,681,000 viewers (P2+) and an average minute streaming audience of 436,000 viewers. The broadcast peaked with 23,094,000 viewers from 10-10:30 p.m. ET.

The NBA Finals on ABC won the night across television on Sunday for the 57th consecutive time.
The 2017 NBA Finals on ABC and the ESPN App continues with Game 3 on Wednesday, June 7, at 9 p.m. (coverage starting at 8:30 p.m.)


Golden State-Cleveland Trilogy Continues to Deliver Best NBA Finals Ratings Ever on ABC
ESPN spins the numbers for Thursday, June 1.

[via press release from ESPN] Golden State-Cleveland Trilogy Continues to Deliver Best NBA Finals Ratings Ever on ABC
Game 1 Draws Strong 12.4 Metered Market Rating, Third-Highest Game 1 Ever on ABC
ESPN's Most-streamed NBA Finals Game 1 Ever: Average Minute Audience of Nearly 500,000 Viewers

Game 1 Peaks with 13.9, NBA Finals on ABC Projected to Win the Night for 56th Consecutive Time
The Golden State Warriors-Cleveland Cavaliers trilogy continues to deliver the best metered market ratings ever for the NBA Finals on ABC. Last night's broadcast, in which the Warriors defeated the Cavaliers by 22 points after opening up a commanding third quarter lead, delivered a strong 12.4 metered market rating. This is the third-highest NBA Finals Game 1 ever on ABC, only surpassed by their two previous meetings, according to Nielsen.

The Game 1 broadcast peaked with a 13.9 metered market rating from 10:15-10:30 p.m. ET. The NBA Finals on ABC is projected to win the night for the 56th consecutive time.
NBA Finals Game 1 ESPN streaming records

Thursday's Warriors-Cavaliers matchup set several ESPN NBA Finals Game 1 streaming records across metrics. Last night's game drew an average minute streaming audience of nearly 500,000 viewers (496,000), up 43 percent from 2016. In addition, it drew 1,546,600 unique viewers, up 54 percent from last year and there were a total of 79,860,000 minutes streamed, up 43 percent.

Top five local markets on ABC:
Cleveland 33.4
San Francisco-Oakland 30.9
Columbus 17.3
Memphis 16.3
Miami 15.8
The 2017 NBA Finals will continue with Game 2 this Sunday, June 4, at 8 p.m. on ABC. For more details on ESPN's NBA Finals coverage, please visit ESPN Media Zone.

NBA Western Conference Finals Game 1 on ABC Delivers Total Live Audience of 8.3 Million Viewers
ESPN spins the numbers for Sunday, May 14.

[via press release from ESPN]
     NBA Western Conference Finals Game 1 on ABC Delivers Total Live Audience of 8.3 Million Viewers

Up 50 Percent from ESPN's 2016 Conference Finals Game 1; Peaked with 11.4 Million Viewers
2017 NBA Playoffs on ABC and ESPN Up Eight Percent from 2016

NBA Western Conference Finals Game 1 on ABC - Golden State Warriors vs. San Antonio Spurs - delivered a total live audience of 8,311,000 viewers (television plus streaming), according to Nielsen. This is up 50 percent from the total live audience of 5,557,000 viewers for ESPN's Conference Finals coverage in 2016 (Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Toronto Raptors). Sunday's broadcast peaked with 11,395,000 viewers (P2+) from 6-6:15 p.m. ET.

On television, Game 1 generated 8,129,000 viewers, up 50 percent from 5,405,000 viewers in 2016. The game drew an additional average minute streaming audience of 182,000 viewers, up 20 percent from 152,000 viewers last year. Game 1 was the highest-rated telecast on broadcast or cable for Sunday, May 14, across the majority of key demos, including M18-34, M18-49, M25-54, P18-34, P18-49 and P25-54.

Through Western Conference Finals Game 1, the 2017 NBA Playoffs on ABC and ESPN is averaging a total live audience of 4,296,000 viewers, up eight percent from 3,977,000 viewers in 2016.

The NBA Western Conference Finals continues on ESPN tonight, May 16, with Game 2 at 9 p.m. It is also available to be streamed on WatchESPN and the ESPN app.


ABC's Most-Watched NBA Playoffs Opening Weekend Game Ever: Total Live Audience of 6,624,000 Viewers for Golden State-Portland Game 1
ESPN spins the numbers for Sunday, April 16.

[via press release from ESPN] ABC's Most-Watched NBA Playoffs Opening Weekend Game Ever: Total Live Audience of 6,624,000 Viewers for Golden State-Portland Game 1
Warriors-Trail Blazers Game 1 Peaked with 9,139,000 Average Viewers
ESPN's & ABC's Television & Streaming Audience Up for 2017 NBA Playoffs
ESPN's Most-Streamed NBA Playoffs Opening Weekend Ever

ABC's broadcast of the Golden State Warriors' Game 1 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday generated a total live audience (television + streaming) of 6,624,000 average viewers, making it ABC's most-watched NBA Playoffs opening weekend game ever, according to Nielsen. It was up 22 percent from the corresponding game last year (Cleveland-Detroit Game 1), which averaged 5,436,000 total live viewers.

Golden State-Portland Game 1 peaked with 9,139,000 average viewers from 5:45-6 p.m. ET. On television, the game drew 6,519,000 average viewers (p2+) with an additional average minute streaming audience of 105,400 viewers.

Through five games, viewership for the 2017 NBA Playoffs on ESPN and ABC is up eight percent, averaging 3,957,000 total live viewers, compared to 3,662,000 last year. On television, the five games averaged 3,865,000 viewers, up eight percent from 3,589,000 viewers last season. It was also ESPN's most-streamed NBA Playoffs opening weekend ever, with an average minute audience of 91,800 viewers, 303,900 average unique viewers and 71,616,500 total minutes streamed.

More highlights:
· ESPN's opening weekend tripleheader averaged a total live audience of 2,976,000 average viewers, up 11 percent from 2,676,000 viewers last year;
· ABC's two opening weekend games averaged a total live audience of 5,382,000 average viewers, up five percent from 5,137,000 viewers last year.
The 2017 NBA Playoffs continue with seven games across ESPN and ABC this weekend. Please visit ESPN Media Zone for the full schedule.

Golden State-Oklahoma City on ABC Delivers Highest-Rated Non-Christmas NBA Regular-Season Game Since 2013
ESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, February 11.

[via press release from ESPN] Golden State-Oklahoma City on ABC Delivers Highest-Rated Non-Christmas NBA Regular-Season Game Since 2013

4.1 Metered Market Rating is Series-Best for NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC

The Golden State Warriors' decisive 130-114 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder last night on ABC delivered a 4.1 metered market rating, making it the highest-rated, non-Christmas NBA regular-season game on any network since 2013, according to Nielsen. It also marked a series-best for NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC, which is currently in its second season, and it was up 58 percent from last season's comparable ABC game, (Warriors-Clippers, 2/20/16, 2.6).

Last night's broadcast peaked with a 4.7 from 11-11:15 p.m. ET. It averaged a 19.5 rating in the Oklahoma City market, which is the best rating for a regular-season NBA game on ABC or ESPN since 2012 in the market. Additionally, the broadcast delivered a 14.3 in the San Francisco-Oakland market, making it the second-highest rated game of the season on ABC or ESPN (second to Christmas).

The Golden State-Oklahoma City showdown also delivered the second-largest streaming audience of the NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC series. It generated an average minute audience of 80,000 viewers, 320,000 unique viewers and 13.8 million total minutes streamed.

The NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC series resumes Feb. 25, when the defending NBA Champion Cleveland Cavaliers host the Chicago Bulls, with coverage starting at 8 p.m. ET.

Viewership for Season Debut of ABC's NBA Sunday Showcase Up 33 Percent
ESPN spins the numbers for Sunday, January 29.

[via press release from ESPN] Viewership for Season Debut of ABC's NBA Sunday Showcase Up Double-Digits
The season debut of the NBA Sunday Showcase presented by Verizon Go90 series on ABC (Jan. 29) delivered double-digit audience increases, according to Nielsen. This past Sunday's matchup - a 107-91 Cleveland Cavaliers' victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder - generated a total live average audience (television + streaming) of 3,230,000 viewers, up 11 percent from 2,905,000 viewers last season for Chicago Bulls at LA Clippers.

On ABC, Sunday's broadcast averaged 3,186,000 viewers (p2+), which was up 10 percent from 2,886,000 viewers last year. Additionally, the streaming audience increased by 220 percent, generating an average minute audience of 43,600 viewers, up from 19,800 last season.

The NBA Sunday Showcase returns on Super Bowl Sunday, Feb. 5, with a special start time of 2 p.m. ET. The Boston Celtics and Isaiah Thomas will host the LA Clippers and Paul Pierce in what is expected to be Pierce's final appearance in Boston. Full details on ESPN's NBA coverage this week can be found on ESPN Media Zone.

"NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC": Season Two Debut Is Highest-Rated Non-Christmas NBA Game of the Season Across ABC and ESPNESPN spins the numbers for Saturday, January 21.

[via press release from ESPN] "NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC": Season Two Debut is Highest-Rated Non-Christmas NBA Game of the Season across ABC and ESPN

San Antonio Spurs-Cleveland Cavaliers Overtime Thriller Generates Double-Digit Increases across Digital Metrics

The season two debut of NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC is the highest-rated, non-Christmas NBA game of the 2016-17 regular season across ABC and ESPN. The San Antonio Spurs' thrilling overtime victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers averaged a 2.6 metered market rating, peaking with a 4.0 rating from 11-11:15 p.m. ET, according to Nielsen.

NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC delivered a 13.9 rating in the San Antonio market, making it the highest-rated game in the market this season across networks. The broadcast generated a 12.2 in the Cleveland market, placing it as the second-highest rated game in the market this season across networks.

The Spurs-Cavaliers showdown delivered a significant streaming audience with 9,146,000 total minutes streamed, 231,800 unique viewers and an average minute audience of 59,800 viewers. This is up 28 percent, 31 percent and 14 percent, respectively, from last year's season debut.
NBA Saturday Primetime on ABC continues next week as the defending Western Conference Champion Golden State Warriors host the LA Clippers at 8:30 p.m. Mike Breen, Jeff Van Gundy, Mark Jackson and Israel Gutierrez will provide commentary. NBA Countdown presented by Straight Talk Wireless precedes the game at 8 p.m. with Sage Steele, Magic Johnson and Michael Wilbon.


National Championship Caps Exciting College Football Playoff Which Delivers Ratings Growth, Sets Numerous Streaming Records
ESPN spins the numbers for Monday, January 9.

[via press release from ESPN] National Championship Caps Exciting College Football Playoff Which Delivers Ratings Growth, Sets Numerous Streaming Records
· New Year's Six Plus Championship Game Up Year-Over-Year
· CFP National Championship Delivers 15.3 Combined Overnight Rating, Sets Streaming Records for Third Consecutive Year
The College Football Playoff (Semifinals + National Championship) averaged a 12.7 overnight rating and a streaming audience of 535,000 average viewers, 1,655,000 unique viewers watching 120,090,000 minutes. The three game overnight average is up 8% from last season's same three games and streaming audience is up 39%, 25%, 38%, respectively, in average minute audience, unique viewers and total minutes watched. The streaming average is the best in the three years of the College Football Playoff - in all three metrics - surpassing the first year by 100%, 65%, and 98%, respectively.
Factoring in the entire New Year's Six, the seven games (New Year's Six + Championship) averaged a 9.0 overnight and a streaming audience of 355,000 average viewers, 1,155,000 unique viewers watching 79,095,000 minutes. The overnight average is up 8% from last season and streaming audience is up 49%, 30%, 48%, respectively, in average audience minute audience, unique viewers and total minutes watched. The streaming average is the best in the three years of the new system - in all three metrics - surpassing the first year by 132%, 96%, and 130%, respectively.
The College Football Playoff National Championship Presented by AT&T between Clemson and Alabama (January 9, 2017) set streaming records for the third consecutive year. The Tigers' victory had a streaming average audience of 710,000 viewers with 2,413,000 unique viewers watching 182,575,000 minutes - setting new highs in all three categories for a college football game on any ESPN network and surpassing last season's national championship game between the same teams (January 11, 2016). The streaming audience was up 21%, 25% and 30%, respectively, in average minute audience, unique viewers and total minutes watched from the before mentioned 2016 CFP National Championship. The unique viewers is ESPN's third best across all sports, trailing only two USA World Cup games which were played during traditional working hours.
ESPN's record-breaking national championship streaming audience concludes a 10-day stretch which delivered the most streamed semifinal (Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl featuring Washington vs. Alabama) and non-semifinal New Year's Six game (Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual featuring USC vs. Penn State) ever.
ESPN's national championship television presentation delivered a 15.3 overnight combined rating, a top six event for ESPN on record across all sports. Birmingham delivered a 53.6 local rating, easily the best among all markets. The complete top markets:
Rank Rating Market
1 53.6 Birmingham
2 35.1 Greenville
3 28.2 Atlanta
4 26.6 Nashville
5 25.8 Knoxville
6 23.6 Charlotte
7 23.2 Jacksonville
8 22.9 New Orleans
9 22.5 Columbus
10 22.3 Memphis
College Football Playoff Semifinals were December 31 in 2015 (4 p.m. and 8 p.m.) and 2016 (3 p.m, and 7 p.m.); Games were televised on ESPN and ESPN2 both year and last year. Streaming audience includes multiple feeds for all metrics and comparisons
New Year's Six consists of Capital One Orange Bowl, Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, PlayStation Fiesta Bowl, Goodyear Cotton Bowl Classic, Rose Bowl Game Presented by Northwestern Mutual and Allstate Sugar Bowl. Each year, two of the games are College Football Playoff Semifinals.
**Overnight includes all of ESPN's Nielsen-rated networks which were part of the MegaCast (ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU). SEC Network, ESPNEWS, ESPN Classic and ESPN Goal Line are not rated and thus not included
More than 26 Million Viewers Watched the College Football Playoff National Championship
· CFP National Championship: Most-Viewed Telecast Across All Cable Networks Since Last Season's National Championship; Rematch Nearly Matches Audience from 2016 Tigers-Crimson Tide National Championship Matchup
· ESPN Experiences Audience Gains for College Football Playoff; New Year's Six Plus National Championship Average Viewership Up Double Digits
The College Football Playoff National Championship between Clemson and Alabama (January 9 at 8 p.m. ET) delivered a total live audience across the multi-network MegaCast (TV feeds + streaming) of 26,029,000 viewers, the most-watched event carried on a cable network since the 2016 College Football Playoff National Championship (January 11, 2016) between the same two teams (26,709,000 viewers).
The College Football Playoff three-game (semifinals + national championship) total live audience average was 22,230,000 viewers, up 9% from last season's same three game total live audience average (20,331,000 viewers). Factoring in the entire New Year's Six, the seven games (New Year's Six + national championship) averaged a total live audience of 16,044,000 viewers, up 15% from last season's seven game total live audience average (14,004,000 viewers).
College Football Playoff Dominates Cable's Most-Watched List
On just ESPN, the Tigers-Crimson Tide's TV viewership drew 24,391,000 viewers, the eighth most-watched cable telecast of all time. Overall, ESPN has televised the nine most-watched cable telecasts ever, with the College Football Playoff holding each of the top 3 spots (2015 National Championship and both 2015 Semifinals), as well as No. 6 (2016 National Championship) and No. 8.
Total live audience for 2017 and 2016 College Football Playoff National Championship includes TV viewership from ESPN's Nielsen-rated networks (ESPN, ESPN2 and ESPNU) and streaming feeds which were part of the MegaCast. SEC Network, ESPNEWS, ESPN Classic and ESPN Goal Line are not rated and thus not included.
ESPN has aired a MegaCast for all three years of the College Football Playoff National Championship.

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