NBA Summer League and Audience Viewership
By: Jason Silverstein
With the annual NBA Summer League approaching next month, it's important to recognize the viewership it receives globally, as well as the opportunities it creates both on and off the court.
Each year, it has gotten bigger and bigger - starting in 2002 when Summer League founder Warren LeGarie, and co- founder Albert Hall decided to give it a shot. Starting with teams in the single digits, to now all 30 teams and even teams from other countries have participated.
Last year, the 10 day period of action saw over half a million views on ESPN, the main TV provider for the event. The first couple of days feature up to 10 games a day, from noon to midnight. Zion Williamson's first ever game in 2019, was the highest viewed game ever, as well as a building sellout. The event is general admission, so fans waited out since sunrise to secure their entry inside. Some tickets were being re-sold at as much as $300/ticket.
Being in Las Vegas and played out of 2 venues, it gives businesses the opportunity to market their company with ads around the venues. As well as do off the court events. The summer league's main partner is MGM Resorts, as well as Samsung, NBA 2K, and more.
Las Vegas, a city without an NBA team, but has been in the talks to potentially have one in the future, can continue to show off their city and fight to bring one in.
The event is also an opportunity from teams, leagues, scouts, GM's and more to all connect. It's a great opportunity for small businesses to try and spread their name and larger businesses to continue to grow with so much action happening in one place.
The event is held July 7-17 this year on the campus of UNLV.