Television ratings for Game 6 of the NBA Finals took a big leap on Tuesday night.
ESPN announced that an estimated 16.8 million people watched the Miami Heat defeat the San Antonio Spurs in overtime on ABC to even the series at three wins each, surpassing the previous series high of 11.4 million viewers for Game 4 on Thursday.
The 14.7 overnight ratings points were the fourth highest in history for an NBA Finals game aired on ABC, behind the Boston Celtics-Los Angeles Lakers Game 7 in 2010 (18.2), Lakers-Detroit Pistons Game 5 in 2004 (15.5) and Heat-Dallas Mavericks Game 6 in 2011 (15.0).
Tuesday night's game peaked with a 19.8 rating nationally at the end of regulation when the Heat rallied in the final minute to send the game to overtime. Ratings for the teams' markets were 47.6 in San Antonio and 35.4 in Miami-Fort Lauderdale.