Typically, only when there is big sports competition from other cablers is USA Network's hold on the top spot for cable weekly ratings threatened. This week the NFL Draft and the first round games of the NBA Playoffs were enough to move USA off the top of the list in adults 18-49 ratings, but they hung onto the top spot in average viewership by a slim margin .
TNT, which has the NBA Playoffs (mostly in primetime), got a big boost, up to second in primetime average viewers and first in adults 18-49. While the NBA Playoffs continue, I'd expect TNT to finish on top of adults 18-49, and likely average viewership for many weeks. ESPN received a big boost from the NFL Draft, up to third in average viewership and second in primetime adults 18-49.
Of course, Nickelodeon was number one for total day average cable viewership.
Prime-time Average Viewers (Live+SD) Week of April 19-25, 2010
Adults 18-49 Primetime Average (Live+SD)
Total Day Average Viewers (Live+SD)
Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2010 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.