After losing the no. 1 spot the previous week, ESPN returned to the top of the Friday cable ratings this week.

The network captured all of the top 3 spots of the night, starting with its broadcast of the Pelicans vs. Lakers NBA game, which scored a 0.8 rating in adults 18-49 with 1.87 million viewers. The Milwaukee vs. Boston game came second with a 0.6, while the network’s usual “After the Buzzer” coverage rounded out the top 3 with a 0.6 as well.

Outside of sports, the Discovery Channel’s “Gold Rush” took a minor hit week-to-week, falling a tenth from its previous 0.7 to a 0.6. On A&E, “Live PD” aired a special “Top 40 Moments of 2018” episode, which scored a 0.5, down two-tenths from the 0.7 it had scored the previous Friday.

Top 25 original cable shows among adults 18-49 for Friday, December 21, 2018

Show Net Time Total viewers (000s) 18-49 rating
NBA REGULAR SEASON – NEW ORLEANS/LA LAKERS ESPN 10:38 PM 1,867 0.8
NBA REGULAR SEASON – MILWAUKEE/BOSTON ESPN 8:13 PM 1,643 0.6
NBA AFTER THE BUZZER ESPN 1:02 AM 1,318 0.6
GOLD RUSH DISCOVERY 9:01 PM 2,566 0.6
LIVE PD SPECIALS: TOP 40 MOMENTS 2018 PT 1 A&E 9:00 PM 1,711 0.5
SPORTSCENTER 1AM ESPN 1:18 AM 874 0.4
NBA COURTSIDE ESPN 8:00 PM 1,050 0.4
LIVE PD AC A&E 8:00 PM 1,125 0.4
COLL FTBL BOWL GAME – WESTERN MICHIGAN/BYU ESPN 4:06 PM 1,372 0.3
RACHEL MADDOW SHOW MSNBC 9:00 PM 3,135 0.3
LIVE PD AC A&E 12:03 AM 847 0.3
NBA PRE-GAME ESPN 7:26 PM 774 0.3
SPORTSCENTER MORNING ESPN 2:00 AM 592 0.3
ANDERSON COOPER 360 CNN 8:00 PM 1,596 0.3
ERIN BURNETT OUTFRONT CNN 7:00 PM 1,517 0.3
CUOMO PRIME TIME CNN 9:00 PM 1,542 0.3
MARRIED TO MEDICINE BRAVO 9:00 PM 743 0.3
CNN TONIGHT CNN 10:00 PM 1,411 0.2
SITUATION ROOM CNN 6:00 PM 1,331 0.2
RUPAUL ALL STARS VH1 8:00 PM 510 0.2
SITUATION ROOM CNN 5:00 PM 1,502 0.2
LAST WORD W/ L. ODONNELL MSNBC 10:00 PM 2,239 0.2
CNN TONIGHT CNN 12:00 AM 1,016 0.2
COLL FTBL BOWL GAME – FLORIDA INTERNATIONAL/TOLEDO ESPN 12:30 PM 838 0.2
MY LOTTERY DREAM HOME HOME 9:00 PM 1,269 0.2

Source: The Nielsen Company.

Posted by:Alex Welch

Alex Welch has been writing for TV by the Numbers since January 2016. In his off time he enjoys rewatching old episodes of Game of Thrones and unironically singing along to ABBA. Every now and then, he even does them at the same time. He lives in Los Angeles.

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