LeBron James is no Kobe Bryant when it comes to audience drawing power, but he’s getting close. Last night’s very competitive Game 7 of the NBA Finals, in which James led the Miami Heat to a second straight title, delivered a big 17.7 overnight rating. That is the second-highest-rated NBA game in ABC history only behind the last time the finals stretched to seven games — the 2010 face-off between the LA Lakers and the Boston Celtics. That closing game, in which the Bryant-led Lakers clinched another championship, posted an 18.2. Overall, the 2013 NBA Finals averaged a 12.4 metered market rating, up 5% from the 11.8 for the 2012 NBA Finals, which were wrapped in five games.
Facing the big basketball game, which easily won the night for ABC, the first-season finale of NBC’s Hannibal (0.7/2 in adults 18-49) matched its series low from last week when it also faced the NBA Finals. At Fox, Hell’s Kitchen (1.9/7) was down a tenth from last week, while Does Someone Have To Go (0.9/3) was even.