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Weekly Nielsen Ratings Cable Top 20: NBA, WWE and NASCAR Lead Pack

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May 20th, 2008

Celtics vs. Cavs

Sports shows dominated the entire top 10, with NBA playoff games taking eight out of the top 10 spots. WWE Raw placed 5th and a NASCAR Sprint Cup race on Saturday came in tenth. Our porous and yellow friend, SpongeBob, was relegated to only the 11th, 12th, 13th and 18th places in the top 20. That's almost like getting completely shut out!

The top two spots, and three of the top four were occupied by NBA games on TNT, while ESPN's best effort came in third. Both of the top two games on TNT cleared 5.4 million viewers

Some of the people who track Friday broadcast primetime viewing wondered how many people watched the ESPN games instead of the Friday broadcast fare: 4.92 million caught the Celtics/Cavaliers game, and the Lakers/Jazz game on Friday averaged 4.64 million.

Full Top 20 Cable Results for the week ending 5/18/2008:

Rank Shows NET DAY(S) Live+SD HH rating Viewers Live+SD AA(000)
1 NBA PLAYOFFS (JAZZ/LAKERS) TNT WEDNESDAY 3.6 5,453
2 NBA PLAYOFFS (CAVALIERS/CELTICS) TNT WEDNESDAY 3.6 5,410
3 NBA PLAYOFFS-CONF SEMIS L (CELTICS/CAVALIERS) ESPN FRIDAY 3.3 4,915
4 NBA PLAYOFFS (CELTICS/CAVALIERS) TNT MONDAY 3.3 4,781
5 WWE ENTERTAINMENT (WWE Raw) USA MONDAY 2.9 4,705
6 NBA PLAYOFFS-CONF SEMIS L (LAKERS/JAZZ) ESPN FRIDAY 3.2 4,642
7 NBA PLAYOFFS (SPURS/HORNETS) TNT TUESDAY 3.1 4,536
8 NBA PLAYOFFS-CONF SEMIS L (HORNETS/SPURS) ESPN THURSDAY 3.0 4,372
9 WWE ENTERTAINMENT (WWE Raw) USA MONDAY 2.7 4,313
10 NASCAR SPRINT CUP RACING SPD SATURDAY 2.5 4,182
11 SpongeBob NICK SATURDAY 2.7 4,094
12 SpongeBob NICK SATURDAY 2.5 4,007
13 SpongeBob NICK SATURDAY 2.6 3,949
14 SCI FI MOVIE (INDIANA JONES/LAST CRUSAD) SCIFI SUNDAY 2.4 3,873
15 SCI FI MOVIE (INDIANA JONES/LAST CRUSAD) SCIFI SATURDAY 2.4 3,857
16 HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL 2 DSNY FRIDAY 2.3 3,831
17 HILLS, THE MTV MONDAY 2.5 3,777
18 SPONGEBOB NICK SUNDAY 2.5 3,682
19 MIGHTY B! NICK SATURDAY 2.3 3,632
20 BACK AT THE BARNYARD NICK SATURDAY 2.3 3,555

People can't get enough of Indiana Jones, but the results somewhat surprised me. I knew Sci Fi was running the marathon last weekend (as USA did the week before), but what's surprising to me is that it was two airings of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, one on Saturday and one on Sunday, that made the top twenty. No Raiders of the Lost Ark or Temple of Doom. Both airings of Crusade garnered over 3.8 million viewers. The Indiana Jones airings made a substantial difference in the weekly cable network rankings with Sci Fi moving up from #26 to #13 overall and from #14 to #6 during primetime.

What seems like the 879th airing of High School Musical 2 had over 50,000 more viewers than the season finale of The Hills which had 3.78 million viewers, of which 2.94m were 12-34 years old according to MTV.

The Sunday baseball interleague matchup featuring the New York Mets vs. the New York Yankees drew 3.42 million viewers and ranked 25th by viewers.

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Nielsen Ratings Data: ©2008 Nielsen Media Research, Inc. All Rights Reserved

 
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