LeBron James’ Announcement to Join Miami Heat Generates Record Overnight Ratings

ESPN’s telecast of “The Decision,” when NBA superstar LeBron James announced his decision to join the Miami Heat, generated a 7.3 overnight rating from 9-10:15 p.m. ET. The 7.3 is the highest overnight rating for any non-NFL ESPN program this calendar year. Additionally, based on overnights, last night’s ESPN telecast was the highest-rated program of the night (cable or broadcast).

The telecast peaked with a 9.6 rating from 9:15-9:30 p.m., when James officially made the announcement. The top three local markets were Cleveland (26.0 metered market rating); Columbus (14.2) and Miami (12.8). Chicago ranked sixth with a 10.7 rating and New York ranked seventh with a 10.4 rating.

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Pictured:  LeBron James speaks at the LeBron James announcement of his future NBA plans at the Boys & Girls Club of America on July 8, 2010 in Greenwich, Connecticut. James announced during a live broadcast on ESPN that he will play for the Miami Heat next season. (Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Estabrook Group).