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#pounditWednesday, December 1, 2021

First episodes of ‘The Last Dance’ were most-viewed ESPN documentary ever

ESPN The Last Dance

ESPN’s long-awaited documentary series “The Last Dance” premiered on Sunday night at a time when sports fans are starving for fresh content, and the ratings for the first two episodes certainly reflected that.

ESPN announced on Monday that “The Last Dance” averaged 6.1 million viewers for episodes 1 and 2, which made the two episodes the most-watched ESPN documentary content ever. They were also the most-viewed telecast on ESPN since the College Football Playoff National Championship Game earlier this year. The two-hour premiere was the most-watched telecast among adults 18-34 and 18-49 across broadcast and cable networks since all major sports leagues were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

While it makes sense that so many viewers tuned in with sports on hiatus, that is still an accomplishment for the creators of the documentary. ESPN has had some wildly popular documentaries with its “30 for 30” franchise like “OJ: Made in America” and “The U,” so topping those is an impressive feat.

The first two episodes of “The Last Dance” certainly did not disappoint, and most fans who watched them can’t wait for the rest of the series. You can read a recap of the premiere here.

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