USA Network Holds Off TNT to Keep Top Slot | Adweek
Advertisement

USA Network Holds Off TNT to Keep Top Slot

Advertisement

USA Network held off a charge by TNT to keep its ratings streak alive, averaging 3.18 million total viewers for the week ended April 26, topping the Turner net by a margin of just over a quarter-million people (254,000).
 
TNT averaged 2.93 million viewers, returning to the #2 spot for the first time in 10 weeks. More importantly, TNT swept all three major demos, averaging 1.57 million viewers 18-49, 1.52 million adults 25-54 and 821,000 18-34s.
 
The network’s coverage of the opening round of the NBA playoffs gave it a huge lift, as five games were among the 50 most-watched shows on ad-supported cable last week. TNT drew 3.82 million viewers April 23 with game three of the Lakers-Jazz series, while game two of the Celtics-Bulls showdown delivered 3.76 million viewers on Monday night.
 
On Tuesday night, LeBron James rang up 29 points and 13 rebounds as the Cavaliers took a two-game lead over the Pistons in front of a national TV audience of 3.7 million viewers.
 
TNT’s roundball coverage helped knock Fox News Channel into third place, marking the first time the news net has fallen out of second place since the week of Feb. 16, per Nielsen ratings data.  FNC closed out the week with an average delivery of 2.27 million viewers, 547,000 of which were members of the core 25-54 demo.
 
A five-hour NFL draft marathon and game three of the season’s first Yankees-Red Sox encounter gave ESPN fourth place, as the sports net averaged 1.83 million viewers. NFL analyst Mel Kiper, Jr., on Saturday afternoon delivered a captive audience of 5.06 million pigskin fans, of which 2.99 million were viewers 18-49. Another 2.82 million adults 25-54 tuned in for ESPN’s draft-day coverage (4 p.m. through 9 p.m.).
 
The following night saw the Sox sweep the Yankees at Fenway Park in front of a national TV audience of 4.6 million fans. ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball telecast delivered 2.19 million 18-49s and 2.21 million 25-54s.
 
Nickelodeon/Nick-at-Nite squeaked past TBS by a margin of around 6,000 viewers, claiming fifth place on the week with an average delivery of 1.63 million viewers. As in weeks past, the kids’ net drew a crowd with a new Wednesday-night installment of iCarly (4.52 million viewers).
 
While USA dropped to second place among the older demos, averaging 1.39 million 25-54s and 1.32 million 18-49s, the network boasted three of the week’s most-watched program on ad-supported cable. WWE Raw averaged 5.3 million viewers Monday night (9 p.m.-10:07 p.m.), while a repeat episode of NCIS served up 4.33 million viewers in the 7 p.m. slot.
 
A new installment of Law & Order: Criminal Intent scared up 4.1 million viewers Sunday night, as actor Jeff Goldblum made his debut as Wheeler’s new partner, Det. Zack Nichols. Lead-out In Plain Sight delivered 3.97 million viewers in the 10 p.m. time slot, down 22 percent versus the April 19 season-two premiere, which averaged 5.11 million viewers.

Continue to next page →