Silver: LeBron’s move west ‘clearly impacted’ TV ratings

Adam Silver says LeBron James' move west hurt NBA TV ratings.

Many have speculated the NBA’s drop in regular-season television ratings was a result, at least in part, of LeBron James leaving Cleveland and heading west, signing a free-agent deal with the Los Angeles Lakers in July.

For the first time, however, the NBA’s main man — commissioner Adam Silver — has confirmed as much.

During an interview with Craig Melvin of NBC’s Today, Silver reiterated the assertion James’ move to the West Coast greased the skids toward the ratings drop since James is no longer playing in the early television window.

“Face it, LeBron is one of the biggest stars in the world, and he also played in the East,” he said near the conclusion of the interview. “And so, the reason I look a little bit tired is a lot of our games are in the West, and it’s late at night.

“And I recognize most people choose to go to sleep at a reasonable time. And so, from a rating standpoint, not having LeBron in the playoffs, not having him in the East, has clearly impacted ratings.”