NBA All-Star Game ratings up 8 percent over last year

Ratings were also up 56 percent in host city Chicago, per Nielsen data.

SHARE NBA All-Star Game ratings up 8 percent over last year
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Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid jump for the ball during the 2020 NBA All-Star Game.

Ashlee Rezin Garcia/Sun-Times

Boosted by a new format and pregame coverage, including emotional tributes to Kobe Bryant, the 2020 NBA All-Star Game saw an 8 percent increase in TV ratings compared to a year ago, TNT announced Monday.

Team LeBron squeezed out a thrilling 157-155 win over Team Giannis in the game, which averaged 7.3 million viewers across TNT and a simulcast on TBS, according to Nielsen Media Research data. Viewership across the country peaked at an average of 8 million viewers during the commercial-free fourth quarter.

In Chicago, which hosted the weekend celebration, the game recorded a 7.9 household rating. That’s a 56 percent increase from a year ago, even though the struggling Bulls didn’t have an All-Star for the third consecutive season.

Pregame coverage, which included tributes to the late Bryant, saw a 19 percent increase over last year. For the second straight night, TNT’s NBA All-Star Weekend coverage was the most-watched program across cable television.

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