nba draft

ESPN’s NBA Draft ratings plummeted this year, according to Sports Business Daily, likely as a result of a weak draft class and a competing broadcast by Yahoo.

According to SBD, ESPN drew a 2.4 overnight rating Thursday, down from a record-setting 3.1 each of the past two years. Louisville led all markets with a 6.5 local rating.

This year’s draft class was in some ways tailor-made for low ratings. It wasn’t a especially strong group, but unlike previous weak drafts like 2013’s, this time there was no drama over who would be taken first, or even second. And after Ben Simmons and Brandon Ingram were off the board, there weren’t too many big names left. In fact, the first round was mostly full of foreign players and guys who had less-than-extraordinary college careers.

Also, ESPN likely lost some viewers to Yahoo’s online draft show, which featured Tom Crean as an analyst and Adrian Wojnarowski and company breaking news.

It’s also possible the draft suffered from a lack of buildup, given that the NBA Finals extended deeper into June than in previous years. With actual basketball being played up until four days before the draft, there wasn’t quite as much time as usual for fans to fixate on the draft.

[Sports Business Daily]

About Alex Putterman

Alex is a writer and editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. He has written for The Atlantic, VICE Sports, MLB.com, SI.com and more. He is a proud alum of Northwestern University and The Daily Northwestern. You can find him on Twitter @AlexPutterman.

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