The NBA is back! Wait, did anyone know it was gone?

Image from: Inquisitr.com

Why was there so much to look forward to on December 25? It was the day millions eagerly looked forward to: the return of men’s professional basketball. Unless you were one of the many who didn’t even care (or notice) that the season was beginning over a month late.

At noon on Christmas Day, the NBA got things underway with my Boston Celtics going up against the New York Knicks on TNT. My thought? No one cares. The data? Well, that surprisingly tells a different story.

First I checked out the traffic for nba.com.

The reach climbed well over its usual number, clearly driving people there who were looking for their teams’ pages, scores, schedules and more.

Google trends showed something similar. Almost half of the searches done that day were NBA-related, and “nba” was searched far more often than it usually is:

So the hoops fanatics are back on board. This all makes sense, but does anyone outside the NBA benefit from hoops’ return?

Sure looks that way. On December 25, when the NBA season kicked off on TNT, the daily reach for tnt.tv shot up a staggering 250%. Daily attention rose by 10. TNT is one of the major broadcast sponsors of the NBA.

It’s a bit refreshing to see that the online benefits of professional basketball’s return extend beyond the league’s site. It’ll be interesting to see if TNT can drive traffic due to the NBA all season long.

Anyone else glad the NBA’s finally back?