NBA Playoffs: TNT Averages A Cable Record 4.18 Million Viewers

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Building on the momentum from its best-ever regular season, TNT dunked the most-watched and highest-rated coverage of the first-round NBA playoffs in cable history.
Over the course of 23 telecasts, TNT averaged a 2.7 U.S. household rating and 4.18 million viewers, gains of 29% and 32%, respectively, from the 2.1 and 3.17 million watchers over the same number of games during the 2010 postseason, according to Nielsen data. Households grew 27% to 3.09 million from 2.43 million.
The "drama" network's demo delivery jumped even higher, ringing up a 38% advance to 1.39 million persons 18 to 34; 37% to 2.4 million persons 18 to 49; 32% to 2.13 million adults 25 to 54; 36% to 982,000 guys 18 to 34; 38% to 1.73 million males 18 to 49; and 34% to 1.52 million men 25 to 54.
Moreover, TNT's NBA playoffs coverage is also scoring with affluent watchers, notching double-digit gains among households sporting incomes of $100,000 and $125,000 or more, across persons 18 to 34, 18 to 49 and 25 to 54. TNT officials say the growth for both affluent categories is the most of any professional sports league, playoffs or regular season.
Herewith a scorecard: 64% among persons 18 to 34 in households with income of at least $100,000; 47% among persons 18 to 49; 39% among adults 25 to 54; 76% among persons 18 to 34 in households earning $125,000 or more; 55% with persons 18 to 49; and 45% among adults 25 to 54.
TNT's playoff coverage follows its most-watched and highest-rated season in its 27 years of airing NBA basketball. During its 52-game regular season, the NBA on TNT averaged a 1.6 U.S. household rating, up 45% from a 1.1 in the 2009-10 season and a 42% increase to 2.45 million viewers from 1.72 million.
Fueled in part by three of the top five NBA regular-season games in cable history, TNT's 2010-11 season's audience was 30% greater than its second-best regular-season viewership: 1.89 million in the 1995-96 campaign.

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