Knicks-Celts Dunk MSGN's Top Nielsen Mark In Nine Years


The New York Knicks wound up on the short end against the Boston Celtics last night, but the thriller tipped off MSG Network's highest Nielsen rating in the New York DMA in more than nine years.
MSG Network's coverage of the Knicks' 118-116 loss to the NBA's defending Eastern Conference champions on Dec. 15 averaged a 3.61 household rating, translating into 271,303 homes in the New York market, according to Nielsen data.
That was MSG's top Knicks telecast since the opening night of the 2001 season, when Michael Jordan's second return to pro basketball, that time with the Washington Wizards, drew a 4.76 rating on Oct. 30 that year.
Knicks-Celtics on Wednesday peaked with a 5.15 household mark in the 9:30 p.m. quarter hour.
Teamed with ESPN's telecast last night, the game registered a Nielsen rating of 6.27 in the New York DMA, for an average of 471, 211 homes.
Through 25 Knicks games, MSGN has averaged a 1.27 household rating,  ahead 17% from a 1.09 mark at the same stage of the 2009-10 season.
MSGN figures to score big again on Friday night with its coverage of the Knicks and the Miami Heat, in a contest featuring LeBron James's first appearance at the "World's Most Famous Arena" since deciding to take his talents to South Beach -- and not Broadway -- as a free agent last summer.
Knicks star forward Amar'e Stoudemire will wear a microphone during the game, and MSGN will share his comments with viewers throughout the contest.
The pregame begins at 6:30 p.m., with tipoff slated for 7 p.m.