Game is second most-watched in net's history

ESPN’s telecast of the Cleveland Cavaliers-Boston Celtics game Thursday night was the second most-watched college or pro basketball game in the net’s history as 8.9 million viewers tuned in.

Game, won handily by the Celtics, could mark the end of LeBron James’ career as a Cavalier. He’s up for free agency this summer and there’s plenty of speculation that if he doesn’t stay in Cleveland, he may end up in either New York or Chicago.

Only last year’s Los Angeles Lakers-Denver Nuggets Western Conference game drew a higher audience with 9.8 million.

ABC’s NBA playoff ratings are up 10% versus last year while ESPN is higher by 4%.

Alphabet will carry Sunday’s Celtics-Orlando Magic game as the two compete in the Eastern Conference finals. TNT telecasts the Western Conference finals that begin Monday night. The Phoenix Suns travel to Staples Center to take on the defending champion Lakers.

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