via press release:
Heat vs. Magic Most-Viewed NBA Opening Week Game Ever on ESPN
Significant Growth for ESPN.com NBA Content
The home opener of the Miami Heat and their new trio of LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh Friday, Oct. 29, when they hosted the Orlando Magic and Dwight Howard is ESPN’s most-viewed opening week game ever (an average of 3,774,000 viewers). The Heat/Magic game is the network’s third most-viewed NBA regular-season game.
The corresponding 2.7 coverage rating is ESPN’s highest rating for an opening week telecast since LeBron James’ NBA debut with the Cleveland Cavaliers against Sacramento in 2003 (2.8 rating). The game averaged 2,707,000 household impressions.
The game registered a 9.3 metered market rating in Miami and a 7.3 rating in Orlando to become ESPN’s highest-rated regular-season game in both cities.
Overall, ESPN’s four opening week telecasts averaged a 1.9 rating, 1,937,000 household impressions and 2,620,000 viewers, an increase of 60 percent in viewers (1,634,000), 53 percent in households (1,266,000) and 46 percent in rating (1.3).
Additionally, according to internal data, ESPN.com’s page views for the NBA section showed significant growth in October and achieved record traffic during the first week of the season. Daily Dime, TrueHoop and the TrueHoop Blog Network were also at an all-time high for the month of October. Since the launch of the Heat Index, five of the top 10 stories attracting the most page views through the NBA section have focused on the Heat.
(Telecast ratings information provided by Nielsen)