Hoops, ‘Liars,’ ‘Glee’ shine Tuesday

NBA Finals on ABC pacing at six-year high

On a night when ABC dunked the competish with the NBA Finals and Fox sang a happy tune with the “Glee” finale, ABC Family carved out a sizable chunk of its target aud with the preem of “Pretty Little Liars.”

The drama, based on Sam Shepard’s young-adult novel series, averaged a nothing-special 2.47 million viewers overall, but hit a bull’s eye with its young femme aud. According to Nielsen, its 7.1 rating in female teens topped all of television Tuesday (including “Glee”), and its 3.3 rating in females 12-34 led in the 8 o’clock hour and is the best for any cable premiere of the 2009-10 season.

It also goes down as ABC Family’s top-rated series launch to date across target 18-34 and 12-34 demos.

“Liars” is the latest addition to the cabler, which continues to draw good numbers for “The Secret Life of the American Teenager,” which first bowed two summers ago. The network also made news of late for picking up basic-cable rights to “Friday Night Lights” starting this fall.

Elsewhere, ABC’s coverage of Game 3 of the NBA Finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and Boston Celtics averaged a series-best 6.7 rating/19 share in adults 18-49 and 15.96 million viewers overall from 9:04 to 11:55 p.m. ET — up 14% in the demo vs. last year’s third contest between Orlando and the Lakers (5.9/17) and 12% better than the same game between the Lakers and Celtics in 2008 (6.0/18).

No Game 3 of the NBA Finals has rated higher since the 2004 series between the Lakers and Detroit Pistons (7.1/20). And this year’s series overall is the highest-rated since that same year.

At Fox, the first-season finale of “Glee” earned a 4.7/12 in 18-49 and 11.08 million viewers overall in the 9 o’clock hour. It grew 21% week to week to log the show’s best numbers to date without an “American Idol” lead-in.

Also impressive at 9 p.m. was the second week of NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” (3.7/10 in 18-49, 13.09m), which was neck-and-neck with the hoops action in total viewers and ranked third for its busy hour in 18-49.

Also of note Tuesday was another good outing by “Deadliest Catch” (1.5/4 in 18-49, 3.49m), which helped Discovery become primetime’s No. 1 cabler for the night in key male demos.

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