Toronto Raptors forward Kawhi Leonard had 41 points as the Raptors beat the Philadelphia 76ers 92-90 in NBA playoff basketball action in Toronto on Sunday, May 12, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS

Toronto Raptors’ dramatic win produces record television ratings in Canada

A peak audience of 3.8 million was watching when Kawhi Leonard hit the buzzer-beater

The greatest moment in Toronto Raptors history produced the biggest television ratings in Canada for an NBA game.

Sportsnet says Sunday night’s Game 7 between the Raptors and visiting Philadelphia 76ers attracted an average audience of 2.2 million viewers.

A peak audience of 3.8 million was watching when Kawhi Leonard hit the buzzer-beater to lift the Raptors to a win over the visiting Philadelphia 76ers in the NBA Eastern Conference semifinal.

READ MORE: Leonard’s buzzer-beater lifts Raptors to Game 7 win over 76ers

The Sunday night tipoff — traditionally a strong evening for TV ratings — and the fact no Canadian teams are left in the NHL playoffs gave the Raptors the sporting spotlight in this country.

Sportsnet says its average audience for the four games it showed during the second-round series was 1.3 million viewers, a 113 per-cent increase over the same round for the Raptors last year.

The 2.2-million figure is a big jump over a typical Raptors game. TSN reported it attracted a regular-season Raptors record audience of 710,000 for DeMar DeRozan’s return to Toronto with the San Antonio Spurs in February.

TSN had a then-record average audience of 1.8 million for a Raptors playoff game in 2016 as Toronto beat the Cleveland Cavaliers in a third-round contest.

The NBA has said viewership in the regular season was up 29 per cent from last year.

Sportsnet and TSN split the Raptors broadcast schedule.

READ MORE: Montero’s goal lifts Whitecaps past Timbers 1-0

The Raptors begin the Eastern Conference final on Wednesday night in Milwaukee against the Bucks.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Infrastructure upgrades about to get underway on Bowen Road

Nighttime road work to start next Monday, June 8, between old Island Highway and Labieux Road

VIDEO: A Vancouver Island black bear takes weekend nap in eagle tree

Videos captured by Terry Eissfeldt shows the bear arriving Saturday night and sleeping in on Sunday

Summer tubing ban on Cowichan River lifted

The Tube Shack opening on June 27

NDP getting COVID-19 wage subsidy ‘indirectly,’ B.C. Liberal leader says

B.C. NDP says Andrew Wilkinson is wrong about federal link

Parent, superintendent, trustee report smooth return to classrooms in B.C.

The biggest challenge is convincing families that it’s safe, some say

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world in ways that would have… Continue reading

Vancouver Island grizzlies: moving in, or just passing through?

Lack of data makes seeming increase in grizzly sightings on the North Island an open question

COVID-19 birthday drive-by celebrations snuffed out in Island community

Bylaw officer visit with threats of a fine mean parade trucks taken off the road

Vancouver Island Regional Libraries to offer ‘takeout’ style services

VIRL will offer the service on a branch-by-branch basis

Most Read