Lakers' Game 7 victory is ratings success for ABC
The Lakers' 83-79 victory over the Celtics on Thursday night not only delivered a 16th NBA championship to the L.A. franchise -- it also delivered massive television ratings for ABC.
Game 7 delivered an 18.2 overnight rating, making it the highest-rated NBA game since 1998 (Bulls versus Jazz). It was the highest-ever overnight rating for an NBA Finals game on ABC (the network's overnight records go back to 2003), besting the 15.5 rating for the Pistons' series-clinching victory over the Lakers in Game 5 of the 2004 finals.
Thursday night's game was the highest-rated television show of the night, peaking with a 23.7 rating from 8:45-9 p.m. PDT. In Los Angeles, the game delivered a 39.7 metered market rating to become ABC's highest-rated NBA game ever in the market. A 33.9 rating in Boston is the second-highest rated game in that area, trailing only the Celtics' championship-clinching victory in Game 6 over the Lakers in 2008.
-- Chuck Schilken