The Miami Heat beat the San Antonio Spurs 95-88 in Game 7 of the NBA Finals Thursday night. The game went right down to the wire with San Antonio missing a few shots in the last couple minutes that could have given us one last twist in an incredible close to the 2013 Finals. Even though Games 2-5 had little drama and intrigue with blowout after blowout, Games 6 & 7 were all-time classics.
Naturally, it was a big night for ESPN/ABC. Game 7 drew a 17.7 overnight rating, which likely caused the folks in Bristol to wildly celebrate the Heat's championship victory.* It's the second highest rating for an NBA game on ABC, falling just short of 2010's Game 7 between the Lakers and Celtics which drew an 18.2 rating.
In terms of sporting events this year, it's the highest rated non-NFL game of the year, outrating both the BCS National Championship Game (15.1) and NCAA Championship Game (14.3). The game also drew a 44.2 rating in Miami and 46.4 in San Antonio according to ESPN.
*NOTE: ESPN was likely celebrating the Heat victory before the final rating was announced. (rimshot)