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ESPN Tops Cable Primetime Ratings; But Margin Over USA Narrows

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December 21st, 2010

As is typical during football season, ESPN stayed on top both cable primetime adults 18-49 ratings and average viewership for the week. Although with no college football or NBA games finishing anywhere near the top of the week's cable ratings its margin over USA (which had the 2 hour Burn Notice season finale) narrowed significanly vs. recent weeks.

Folks hoping for ESPN to move off the top spot don't have too much longer to wait, there is only more Monday Night Football game, and the college bowl games on ESPN wrap up on January 10.

Nickelodeon remained comfortably at the top of the total day average viewership rankings.

For the week's top 25 individual cable programs click here.

Prime-time Average Viewers (Live+SD) Week of December 13-19, 2010

Network (000s)
ESPN 3,026
USA 2,995
FAM 2,468
DSNY 2,327
TNT 2,129
HIST 1,924
FOXN 1,874
TBSC 1,847
NAN 1,599
HALL 1,573
A&E 1,430
FX 1,314
TOON 1,258
FOOD 1,229
DISC 1,219
AMC 1,218
LIFE 1,192
HGTV 1,177
TLC 1,132
LMN 1,106
SYFY 1,097
SPK 1,079
TRU 1,014
CMDY 987
TVLD 983

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Adults 18-49 Prime-time Average (Live+SD)

Network (000s)
ESPN 1,537
USA 1,328
FAM 1,092
TBSC 1,050
HIST 856
TNT 809
A&E 722
FX 720
DISC 630
BRAV 611
CMDY 603
FOOD 549
SPK 498
TLC 494
DSNY 477
TRU 473
LIFE 468
MTV 455
NAN 437
SYFY 434
NFLN 418
AMC 397
HGTV 392
BET 337
VH1 337

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Total Day Average Viewers (Live+SD)

Network (000s)
NICK 2,437
DSNY 1,633
NAN 1,541
TNT 1,336
USA 1,324
ESPN 1,286
ADSM 1,227
FAM 1,150
FOXN 1,062
TBSC 1,003
TOON 998
HIST 940
A&E 773
FX 758
DISC 734
HALL 722
LIFE 709
TRU 697
FOOD 686
HGTV 671
AMC 643
TVLD 642
SPK 634
LMN 572
CMDY 548

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Nielsen TV Ratings: ©2010 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.

Cable Channel Abbreviations: NICK = Nickelodeon, NAN = Nick At Nite, TOON = Cartoon Network, ADSM = Adult Swim, TRU = truTV, LIFE = Lifetime, NKJR - Nick Jr., FAM = ABC Family, TVLD = TV Land, FOXN = Fox News, TBSC = TBS, DISC = Discovery

 
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