From Super Bowl to NBA Finals: Major Sports Championship Viewership Before, During and After COVID

This year’s NBA Finals tell a story of pandemic-era audience erosion that does not bode well for the Olympics

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The 2021 NBA Finals were about as successful as a Milwaukee vs. Phoenix matchup in July could be, and grew 32% in total viewers from last year’s series (when the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Miami Heat and the year-to-year TV audience cut in half).

Of course, the 2020 NBA Finals faced much tougher challenges than this year’s market-size hinderance — namely a lengthy delay from summer to fall and a total of zero fans in the arena.

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Tony Maglio

TV Editor • • Twitter: @tonymaglio