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Game 1 of the 2015 WNBA Finals, which aired Sunday, Oct. 9, on ABC, delivered a 0.5 overnight rating, the best since 2010. The matchup between the Minnesota Lynx and the Los Angeles Sparks resulted in a +25% increase from last year’s Game 1.
ESPN’s exclusive coverage of the 2016 WNBA Finals presented by Verizon featuring the top two teams in the league – defending WNBA champions Minnesota Lynx and the Los Angeles Sparks — will tip off Sunday, Oct. 9, at 3 p.m. ET on ABC. All other games in the best-of-five series will be played on ESPN or ESPN2.
Four teams remain as the 2016 WNBA Playoffs semifinals tip off Wednesday, Sept. 28, with a doubleheader on ESPN2 beginning at 8 p.m. as the eighth-seeded Phoenix Mercury visit the top-seeded Minnesota Lynx in the best-of-five series.
ESPN’s live presentation of every game of the WNBA Playoffs 2016 presented by Verizon will begin Wednesday, Sept. 21, with a first-round, single-elimination doubleheader on ESPNEWS. The Phoenix Mercury will visit the Indiana Fever in the first matchup at 6 p.m. ET, followed by the Seattle Storm visiting the Atlanta Dream at 8 p.m. Commentator Pam Ward and analyst LaChina Robinson will call the early game, with play-by-play commentator Ryan Ruocco, analyst Rebecca Lobo and reporter Holly Rowe calling the second tilt.
ESPN’s Saturday tip-off of the 2016 WNBA season delivered the best audience for a WNBA regular-season game on the ESPN networks (excluding ABC) since 2001, with an average of 505,000 viewers.