The NBA continues to buck the television ratings trend, with both national and local viewership showing impressive gains as the league headed into the All-Star break. Nationally, NBA games on ABC, ESPN, NBA TV and TNT are showing double-digit viewership increases. The combined 15 percent jump puts the league’s TV viewership at its best mark heading into All-Star weekend since the 2012-13 season. Locally, regional sports networks are seeing a 7 percent increase in ratings so far this season. SportsBusiness Journal analyzed ratings data for 27 U.S.-based teams across the NBA. Seventeen RSNs showed increases; 10 posted decreases. Information for Memphis, Utah and Toronto was not available. These gains come as other sports have seen television viewership drop precipitously over the past several years. For example, the NFL regular season posted a 9 percent drop in viewership last season across CBS, ESPN, Fox and NBC — a viewership drop that followed an 8 percent drop in 2016. Similarly, college football viewership took a hit this past season, with CBS, ABC, NBC and ESPN all posting significant declines.
NBA beats odds, sees gain in local ratings
Sports Business Daily | Feb 20