• Loading stock data...
Sunday, July 14, 2024

Nearly Every WNBA Broadcaster Has Set a Ratings Record This Season

  • Six networks have seen their most-watched WNBA games ever.
  • All but one of those telecasts featured Caitlin Clark.
Grace Hollars-USA TODAY Sports

Imagine a sports league is drawing up a game plan to set a bevy of new viewership marks across nearly all its broadcast partners. It’s highly unlikely they would plan to rely on a rookie leading a team with a lone victory and the second-worst record in that league one-fifth of the way through the season.

But that’s reality for the WNBA, which simply can’t stop drawing record TV audiences this month. It began with Caitlin Clark’s debut, which was the league’s most-viewed game in 23 years, and hasn’t slowed down since. Over Memorial Day weekend, three more networks drew their biggest WNBA audiences ever, and it wasn’t even all due to Clark, according to Sports Media Watch.

Spreading the Ball Around

So far, six different TV networks have broadcast the most-watched WNBA games ever on their channels, respectively:

  • ESPN2: Fever at Sun, May 14, 2.1 million
  • ABC: Fever at Liberty, May 18, 1.71 million
  • ESPN: Sun at Fever, May 20, 1.56 million
  • Ion: Fever at Sparks, May 24, 724,000
  • CBS: Liberty at Lynx, May 25, 704,000
  • NBA TV: Fever at Aces, May 25, 333,000

ABC also averaged 1.34 million viewers for Sparks at Aces on May 16, the network’s third-highest WNBA audience of all time. Indiana and Clark have also played one game on Amazon Prime Video, which doesn’t release viewership figures, and one game not on national TV. CBS gets its first crack at a Fever game June 16, and ESPN has multiple games featuring Clark in July, when there will be no NBA or NHL to compete with.

Even More Ahead?

Despite the phenomenon that is Caitlin Clark and the overall increased interest in the league, more work remains to be done in order to set all-time WNBA viewership records. No game this season has cracked the league’s top 10 broadcasts, which feature audiences between 2.46 million and 5.04 million on NBC in the WNBA’s inaugural season and early years.

Linkedin
Whatsapp
Copy Link
Link Copied
Link Copied

What to Read

Apr 12, 2024; Sacramento, California, USA; Phoenix Suns guard Grayson Allen (8) and guard Devin Booker (1) and guard Bradley Beal (3) and forward Royce O'Neale (00) and forward Kevin Durant (35) huddle up before the final seconds of the fourth quarter at Golden 1 Center.

The Suns Have Entered the NBA’s Uncharted, Punitive Territory

The NBA’s first $400 million team between payroll and projected luxury tax.
Oct 5, 2023; Landover, Maryland, USA; Washington Commanders owner Josh Harris with fans before the game against the Chicago Bears at FedExField.

Parts of the Commanders’ Past Finding Their Way Into Harris Era

The team is developing plans to honor former logo designer next season.
Tony Romo at the American Century Championship in Lake Tahoe

One of the Hottest Celebrity Wait Lists Is a Golf Tournament

The American Century Championship tees off Friday.
podcast thumbnail mobile
Front Office Sports Today

Warner Bros. Discovery Faces Final Decision on NBA Rights

0:00

Featured Today

Oct 2, 2021; Miami Gardens, FL, USA; NFL commissioner Roger Goddell speaks during the Don Shula Celebration of Life at Hard Rock Stadium.

The NFL Is Confident It Can Overturn the Sunday Ticket Verdict

The league may have good reason to believe it can win.
July 8, 2024

NFLPA Report Cards Have Become the ‘Talk of the Locker Room’ Across..

NFLPA report cards have become the ‘talk of the locker room.’
July 7, 2024

The New College Sports Insiders Are Graphic Designers

Joe Tipton and Hayes Fawcett have become premier news-breakers on social media.
Oct 27, 2023; Sacramento, California, USA; A general of the Sacramento Kings logo on the court before the game against the Golden State Warriors at Golden 1 Center.
July 6, 2024

How Sports Went From Private Equity Punchline to Coveted Asset Class

Once an industry punchline, sports are now a coveted asset class.
July 10, 2024

‘Where’s truTV?’ March Madness Channel Is Now TNT Sports’ New Star

Warner Bros. Discovery will make its sports emphasis on truTV ‘even more pronounced and consistent.’
July 11, 2024

Will They or Won’t They? TNT Must Match Bids or Say Goodbye to NBA

A spurned media partner has sued the league before.
Sponsored

TopSpin 2K25 Brings the Legends of Tennis to Your Living Room

2K sports is reviving a classic with TopSpin 2K25.
July 10, 2024

NBA Agrees to $76 Billion in Media-Rights Deals, but TNT Still Looms

Welcome back, ‘Roundball Rock.’ Farewell, ‘Inside the NBA’?
Stadium with NFL logo at the mid-field line
July 10, 2024

‘Nonsensical’: NFL Blasts Massive Jury Award in Latest Sunday Ticket Case Filings

The league asked for a new trial and called the damages ‘indefensible.’
May 2, 2015; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Referee Kenny Bayless (center) separates Manny Pacquiao (left) from Floyd Mayweather during their boxing bout at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports
July 9, 2024

The Most Watched Boxing Matches Ever

The most-watched boxing match was the 2015 bout between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao which drew 4.6 million PPV buys.
July 8, 2024

Fox Sports Is Winning Its Bet on Soccer Media-Rights Deals

The network has media rights to Copa América and Euro 2024.