Celtics, NBA big winners

The Boston Celtics won their first NBA championship in 22 years, and ABC scored its highest ratings for NBA in their current broadcast deal.

The 131-92 blowout win by the Celtics over the Lakers averaged 17 million viewers and a 6.9 Nielsen rating among adults 18-49 and a 7.1 among adults 25-54 (from 8 p.m. to 11:01 p.m. CDT), according to Nielsen (what’s amazing is the season premiere of America’s Got Talent averaged 12 million viewers against the game.)

The series’ first five games were up 56 percent from last year’s Cavs-Spurs series, which ended in a four-game sweep.

However, all the news isn’t good for the NBA: A poll taken by Ad Age revealed 37 percent of respondents believe the league somewhat or likely alters the outcome of their games and the number rises to 41 percent among casual fans. This comes after disgraced referee Tim Donaghy alleged that NBA executives manipulated the results of games to boost ticket sales and TV ratings (if this was the case, then how come the Bulls still aren’t winning games?)