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Nets Record Losing Streak Attracting More Eyeballs?

Thursday, 3 Dec 2009 | 2:03 PM ET

The New Jersey Nets made history last night by opening the season with their 18th straight loss. The funny thing is that I’ve been catching myself watching Nets games more than I ever have. Why? Because a team that wins every once in a while is much less appealing than a team that never wins.

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AP
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That train wreck philosophy has actually helped ratings on the YES Network for the last five games the team has played.

Ratings for the team's games are averaging 25,000 households per game through last night’s telecast, which is still down 35 percent from last year’s ratings at this time. But as the Nets have continued to lose, more people have watched.

In the last five games, ratings are up 22 percent and the network says key demographics are up triple digits as compared to the first 13 games played.

Now that the Nets have broken the record for the worst start to an NBA season, the next record to look out for is the worst losing streak a team in the league has ever had. The Cleveland Cavaliers lost 24 games over a two-season span in 1982. Since the Nets lost the last game of last year, the streak is actually now at 19.

The team might have a chance to break the streak over the next couple of games. They play the 7-10 Bobcats on Friday, the 4-12 Knicks on Sunday, the 7-9 Bulls on Tuesday and the 6-11 Warriors on Wednesday.

Update: Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban just posted this on his Facebook page: "Everywhere I went in NYC, EVERYONE wanted to talk about the Nets. "The LStreak" could pay off in the long run for the team."

Questions? Comments? SportsBiz@cnbc.com

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