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Tuesday, April 16, 2024
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WNBA Finals Viewership Falters in Game 2

  • Wednesday night’s blowout 104-76 win for the Las Vegas Aces averaged 626,000 viewers on ESPN — the Finals’ least-watched game since 2020.
  • However, the series’ first two games have combined for 680,000 average viewers — the most for a WNBA Finals through Game 2 in 20 years.
Las Vegas Aces guard Kelsey Plum reacts to a play against the New York Liberty in the second half during game two of the 2023 WNBA Finals at Michelob Ultra Arena.
Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports

After a strong start, the WNBA Finals’ viewership had a setback for Game 2.

Wednesday night’s blowout 104-76 win for the Las Vegas Aces over the New York Liberty averaged 626,000 viewers on ESPN — the Finals’ least-watched game since the pandemic-affected 2020 matchup between the Aces and Seattle Storm (409,000 viewers), per SportsMediaWatch

It was also a 4% year-over-year decline from 2022’s Game 2 when the Aces handled the Connecticut Sun 85-71 to an audience of 649,000 viewers. Competition from the MLB Postseason and the second night of the NHL regular season could have caused the lower viewership.

However, ESPN is spinning the 2023 Finals thus far as a win, primarily due to the 729,000 average viewers that tuned in for Game 1.

The series’ first two games have combined for 680,000 viewers on average — the most for a WNBA Finals through Game 2 in 20 years and a 13% increase from 2022. 

The Finals will look to build on those numbers in Game 3 when it goes up against the NFL again on Sunday — but even if the game falters on television, it should be a raucous atmosphere in person: Game 3 is on track to be one of the most expensive WNBA tickets on record.

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