More than twice as many people watched the NFL draft than the NBA playoffs on Thursday night.
The combined overnight rating for the first round of the draft was a 6.42, with ESPN generating a 5.47 rating and NFL Network getting 0.95. TNT got a 2.1 rating for the Chicago Bulls’ NBA playoff win over the Cleveland Cavaliers and a 3.0 rating for the Oklahoma City Thunder’s win over the Los Angeles Lakers.
The numbers are the latest reminder that in American sports, nothing even comes close to the NFL. That’s why the NFL’s decision to schedule a regular-season game at the same time as the World Series is just good business sense.
It’s also why Mark Cuban’s complaints about the scheduling of the draft are silly: If the NBA doesn’t want to go head-to-head with the NFL draft in prime time, it should move its games to the daytime.