Through three summer league games in Las Vegas, the Lakers (1-2) have drawn record ratings on Time Warner Cable SportsNet.
The team’s Friday debut against the Minnesota Timberwolves was the highest-rated summer game in the history of the network with a 1.45 household rating. Second overall pick D’Angelo Russell and the Lakers fell, 81-68, to the Timberwolves and center Karl-Anthony Towns, the top pick in June’s NBA draft.
The numbers dipped slightly Saturday in the Lakers’ 68-60 win over center Jahlil Okafor (third overall pick) and the Philadelphia 76ers, averaging a 1.23 household rating.
The numbers climbed to 1.29 during a difficult 76-66 loss to fourth overall pick Kristaps Porzingis and the New York Knicks on Monday, the second-highest rated summer game in network history. Saturday’s win over Philadelphia placed third all-time.
Last year’s summer squad averaged a relatively scant 0.27 rating per household. Throughout the Lakers’ 2014-15 regular season (21-61), the team averaged 1.55.
The Lakers will play their first game of the NBA’s summer league tournament Wednesday against the Dallas Mavericks. They’re guaranteed to play at least five times total -- or as many as eight, should they advance to the championship game Monday.
Thus far, Russell has struggled, shooting 33.3% from the field with 6.7 turnovers a game.
Second-year forward Julius Randle, who missed almost his entire rookie season with a broken leg, is averaging 9.0 points a game while shooting 29.4%.