The Golden State Warriors’ 104-89 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Thursday night delivered a 12.9 overnight rating and 23 share in metered-market households, edging out last year’s NBA Finals opener (12.9/20) to mark ABC’s best prelim numbers for a Game 1 since it started hosting the hoops championship in 2003.
Overall, Cleveland proved to be the strongest Game 1 market, with a 36.0 metered-market rating, followed by San Francisco (32.8) and Sacramento (20.2).
FINAL UPDATE: In the Nielsen finals, game a delivered 19.2 million total viewers and a 7.3 demo rating, topping last years Warriors/Cavs opener, which did 17.8 mil and a 6.9. It thus stands as the most watched Game 1 in ABC’s coverage history as well as the highest-rated, besting 2004’s Pistons/Lakers tipoff (which held the previous record of 7.0).
Elsewhere on Thursday….
NBC | Strong (2.7 mil/0.6) dipped a tenth. Game of Silence‘s first hour hit series lows of 2.2 mil/0.4, while its penultimate airing rose to 2.2 mil/0.5. Series finale airs Sunday, remember!
FOX | Bones (4.6 mil/0.9) was steady, while American Grit (2.0 mil/0.6) rose a tenth.
THE CW | Airing out of a Legends rerun (750K/0.2), Beauty and the Beast opened its final season with 830K and a 0.2, down a tenth from its previous premiere but on par with its Season 3 finale.