TNT Dunks Best-Ever Ratings With 'NBA All-Star Saturday Night'2/20/2011 5:19 PM Eastern
"The Blake Show" blew up big for TNT last night as the network scored its best ever Nielsen marks with its coverage of NBA All-Star Saturday Night.
The event, presented by State Farm and featuring Los Angeles Clippers high-flying rookie sensation Blake Griffin winning the Sprite Slam Dunk Contest, averaged a 4.4 U.S. national rating, 5.1 million households and 8.1 million viewers, according to Nielsen Fast Nationals data. Those Feb. 19 telecast numbers marked TNT's best-ever during its 26 years covering the event, topping 2009 by 13% in ratings (3.9 national), 14% in households (4.47 million) and 23% in viewers (6.55 million).
Stephen Curry of Golden State Warriors taking the Taco Bell Skills Challenge, and the Miami Heat's James Jones connecting on the Foot Locker Three-Point Shootout -- now ranks as the most-watched NBA telecast on cable during the 2010-11 season to-date, surpassing the Oct. 26, 2010 season-opening game between the Boston Celtics and the Miami Heat, the first contest featuring the South Beach Three of LeBron James, Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh. That telecast scored a 4.6 U.S. household rating, 5.34 milion households and 7.43 million viewers.
Last night's event easily outperformed TNT's presentation of the 2010 NBA All-Star Saturday Night, which went up against the second night of NBC's coverage of the 2010 Winter Olympics from Vancouver: 42% in rating (3.1), 43% in households (3.56 million) and 49 in viewers (5.44 million).
The telecast peaked during 10:30 p.m. 11 p.m. (ET) period, averaging nearly 6.4 million households and 10.4 million total viewers tuning in to see Griffin's winning dunk, which featured him soaring over a 2011 Kia Optima, the official vehicle of the NBA, with teammate Baron Davis assisting with a pass from the sunroof inside the car.
The telecast also had double-digit growth in key adult and male demos over the 2010 version, including: persons18 to 34 (up 23% to 3 million from 2.44 million); persons 18 to 49 (19% to 4.85 million from 4.07 million); adults 25 to 54 (22% to 4.14 million from 3,39 million); guys 18 to 34 (17% to 2 million from 1.7 million); males 18 to 49 (22% to 3,27 million from 2.69 million); and men 25 to 54 (28% to 2.72 million from. 2.13 million).
Heading into the All-Star break, which culminates with its coverage of the contest tonight, the network has rung up most-watched season in Turner's 27 years of airing NBA action. Through 38 games, the NBA on TNT averaged a 1.5 U.S. rating (up 26% from a 1.2) 2.38 million viewers (30% from 1.83 million) and 1. 77 million households (27%, from 1.39 million) over the deliveries at this stage of last season.
Moreover, the current campaign ranks 26% ahead of Turner's 1995-96 regular season, its previous best with an average of 1.89 million watchers.