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ESPN's Michael Jordan 'The Last Dance' Averaged 5.6M Viewers for Final Episodes

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistMay 18, 2020

Michael Jordan (R) of the Chicago Bulls tries to get past Bryon Russell (L) of the Utah Jazz 12 June during game five of the NBA Finals at the United Center in Chicago, IL. The Bulls lead the best-of-seven series 3-1.        AFP PHOTO/Jeff HAYNES (Photo by JEFF HAYNES / AFP) (Photo by JEFF HAYNES/AFP via Getty Images)
JEFF HAYNES/Getty Images

The final two episodes of ESPN's documentary miniseries on Michael Jordan and the 1997-98 Chicago Bulls, The Last Dance, averaged 5.6 million viewers, according to Isabelle Lopez of ESPN Press Room.

Episode 9 averaged 5.9 million viewers, while Episode 10 posted an average of 5.4 million viewers. Episode 1 (6.3 million) and Episode 3 (6.1 million) were the most viewed original broadcasts. 

ESPN @espn

WHAT. A. RIDE. #TheLastDance https://t.co/Cf9KrmkGDd

Episodes 9 and 10 focused primarily on the team's two NBA Finals wins over the Utah Jazz, including Scottie Pippen playing through a back injury in Game 6 of the 1998 NBA Finals and Jordan's heroic performance in that contest and his famous game-winning shot over Bryon Russell. 

It also took a longer look at Steve Kerr's background and his game-winning shot in Game 6 of the 1997 NBA Finals, Jordan's legendary performance in Game 5 of the 1997 NBA Finals when he had food poisoning but still managed to score 38 points in 44 minutes, and the team's epic, seven-game series against Reggie Miller and the Indiana Pacers in the 1998 Eastern Conference Finals. 

It was one of just three Game 7s Jordan would play in during his career.

Episode 9 also spotlighted security guard Gus Lett, who became close friends with Jordan and a father figure to him after his dad, James, was murdered.

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All in all, it was a successful run of ratings for ESPN, and a much-needed dose of basketball content for NBA fans during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

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