MEDIA
06/11/2010 06:11 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

NBA Finals Score Big For ABC Thursday

By John Consoli, The Wrap

It was all about NBA basketball last night with Game 4 of the championship finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics on ABC dwarfing all competition in the 18-49 demo and in total viewers.

Making it easier for Game 4 to dominate the night was that it was not only up against repeats on most of the other networks, and the normally potent "So You Think You Can Dance" on Fox was a special noncompetition episode in which the show's 11 finalists were introduced and profiled.

Game 4 on ABC, which saw the Celtics tie the best of seven series up at two games apiece, recorded a 4.8 18-49 rating from 9-11 p.m. and averaged 11.6 million viewers, according to Nielsen data.

Between 9-10 p.m., Game 4 recorded a 4.3 18-49 rating and averaged 10.9 million viewers. The next closest show in 18-49 was "SYTYCD" with a 2.5. A repeat of the CBS drama "CSI" produced a 1.6 and two NBC sitcom repeats, "The Office" and "30 Rock" scored a 1.3. "CSI" pulled in the second most viewers in the hour with 8.4 million, compared to "SYTYCD's" 6.6 million.

Between 10-11 p.m., it was much of the same for Game 4, which averaged a 5.2 18-49 rating and 12.4 million viewers. A repeat of CBS drama "The Mentalist" recorded a 1.7 18-49 rating and 8.9 million viewers in that hour, while repeats of NBC sitcoms "The Office" and "Parks & Recreation" were barely on the map with a 1.2 average 18-49 demo rating and a cumulative average 2.4 million viewers.

ABC did well even before the NBA game, with "Jimmy Kimmel Live" winning the 8 p.m. half hour with a 3.1 18-49 rating and 8.8 million viewers and the 8:30 p.m. half hour with an NBA pre-game show that scored a 3.0 18-49 rating and 8 million viewers. A repeat of CBS drama "CSI" in the hour did a 1.5 18-49 rating and 7.4 million viewers, while a repeat of Fox's "Glee" scored a 1.7 18-49 rating and 4.4 million viewers.

ABC won the night overall, averaging a 4.2 18-49 rating from 8-11 p.m. with 10.6 million viewers. Fox was second in 18-49 for the night with a 2.1 rating, CBS came in second in overall viewers, averaging 8.2 million.

Because the early fast affiliate ratings are based on time periods and not programs specifically, the NBA game ratings do not include complete Pacific viewing which ratings that come in later today will. So the NBA numbers will go up even more. Clearly, with the ratings the NBA finals are producing so far, ABC is rooting for the series to go the full seven games.

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