"Fewer people are watching television," says Kevin Draper, who delved into the sports ratings decline for The New York Times. "More viewers than normal are choosing to watch news. Game schedules were optimized to safely complete events in a compressed time frame, not to maximize viewership. More sports than ever are happening at the same time and thus competing for eyeballs. And, of course, many smaller factors play a part." He adds: "There are a lot of people grafting their preferred political narrative onto the NBA’s ratings decline. Senator Ted Cruz, Republican of Texas, sparred with the Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban about ratings on Twitter. The Fox News hosts Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity have talked about ratings for games on their shows, and it has been well covered by conservative media outlets. There are a few problems with asserting that political or social justice stances have affected NBA viewership. We don’t have great data on the issue; the data we do have does not suggest the NBA’s political positioning is a major factor in its ratings decline; and those connecting the ratings with the demonstrations cite little more evidence than the ratings decline by itself. Much of the polling on the issue is poorly done, but the main takeaway from the better polls is that there is little evidence fans are turning away from the N.B.A. for political reasons." In a follow-up series of tweets, Draper says that "the best, and ultimately unsatisfying, answer is a cascade of effects that are difficult to assign proper weights to. The good thing about that is it definitionally means anyone advancing a magic bullet theory is an unserious person: That means it is impossible to determine with specificity how many people stopped watching the NBA (or sports generally) because of social justice displays. But we have a lot of data around the edges, and it all suggests: Not many...Anyway, the strangest thing about writing a too long piece about how complex sports TV ratings are is that your mentions immediately fill up with people telling you why THEY don’t watch and how there are millions more people out there like them."