It may have felt a bit too close to call up until the final minutes, but, in the end, the Golden State Warriors continued with tradition last night and defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers in Ohio to now lead the 2018 NBA Finals 3-0.
The continuation of course for the 110-102 primetime match-up comes from last year when LeBron James and crew were also denied a victory by Steph Curry, Kevin Durant and the rest of the GSW in Game 3 of the 2017 NBA Finals after suffering two back-to-back losses. In what was then the two teams’ third consecutive NBA Finals, 2016 champs the Cavs went on to triumph in Game 4 of the 2017 series before being shut down in Game 5 in Oakland and the 2015 champs GSW became the 2017 champions.
With a 12.7 in metered market results, last night’s exhilarating Game 3 of the 2018 NBA Finals dipped just 5% to be pretty steady from the comparable match-up of last year. That 118-1113 June 7, 2017 face-off in Cleveland went on to pull in 20 million viewers, to be the second most watched game of the series after the decisive Game 5.
According to Nielsen, last night’s Game 3 peaked with a 15.4 rating right near the end in the 11:15-11:30 PM ET slot. According to anyone who can do math, ABC has won the night yet again with the NBA Finals.
Taking a slightly bigger picture perspective though, last night’s MM rating is a victory of another sort being in line with what we have been seeing this series. It’s actually remarkable in that this is the fourth time these teams have been playing each other in the NBA Finals and no fatigue has set in and this comes in an environment where almost everyone is taking a real ratings hit, including the NFL.