It was good news/bad news for the NBA.  The bad news was that other than the Cavaliers/Celtics series, all of the conference semi-final series were four game sweeps.  Longer series are better for the networks.    The good news was that without any other series airing,  the dearth of games seemed to create more demand for the final two games of the Cav/Celtics series got a boost.  Thursday’s game on ESPN was the second-most watched basketball game on ESPN in the history of the network.

Repeats of  NCIS and Law & Order: SVU were the most-watched scripted content on cable for the week.

I’ve included the ratings notes for TBS, TNT, Adult Swim, Cartoon Network and truTV beneath the to 25 table.

As usual, we have already posted separately quite a bit of  data for shows that aren’t on the list above. Give our site’s search feature near the top right of the site a try.

We always post whatever specific show data we received directly and see via press release or other trade publications.  You can  subscribe to our RSS feed and  you can also follow @TravisYanan on Twitter.  During the week he usually posts some (not all) cable results for each weekday, usually late in the afternoon on the east coast (and Friday night data isn’t posted until Monday) and he posts the links to that info on his Twitter account to the info on Marc Berman’s PI Forums.

You should also follow @TVBill (it’s not Bill Gorman, but he is a TV ratings junkie and sometimes posts cable ratings info). You can also follow me on Twitter, sometimes I will post some cable ratings, though I am not taking requests there…

Top 25  cable shows for the week ending May 9, 2010:

Rank Shows NET DAY( Time Viewers Live+SD (000)
1 CAVALIERS/CELTICS ESPN Thu 08:00P-10:59P 8,983
2 CELTICS/CAVALIERS TNT Tue 08:05P-10:59P 6,737
3 LAKERS/JAZZ TNT Mon 10:44P-01:27A 5,079
4 WWE ENTERTAINMENT USA Mon 09:00P-10:00P 4,472
5 WWE ENTERTAINMENT USA Mon 10:00P-11:08P 4,339
6 NCIS USA Wed 08:00P-09:00P 4,068
7 LAW & ORDER: SVU USA Sun 09:00P-10:00P 4,019
8 LAW & ORDER: SVU USA Sun 10:00P-11:00P 3,840
9 SPONGEBOB NICK Sat 09:30A-10:00A 3,834
10 SPORTSCENTER LATE       L ESPN Thu 10:59P-12:30A 3,789
11 PENGUINS OF MADAGASCAR NICK Sat 10:00A-10:30A 3,767
12 NCIS USA Mon 08:00P-09:00P 3,753
13 GOOD LUCK CHARLIE DSNY Sun 08:30P-08:55P 3,739
14 DEADLIEST CATCH DISC Tue 09:00P-10:01P 3,702
15 SPONGEBOB NICK Sat 09:00A-09:30A 3,646
16 SPONGEBOB NICK Sun 09:30A-10:00A 3,635
17 LAW & ORDER: SVU USA Sun 08:00P-09:00P 3,614
18 NCIS USA Wed 09:00P-10:00P 3,565
19 SUITE LIFE ON DECK DSNY Fri 08:00P-08:25P 3,559
20 WIZARDS OF WAVERLY PLACE DSNY Fri 08:30P-09:00P 3,533
21 ICARLY NICK Mon 06:00P-06:30P 3,520
22 NCIS USA Sat 10:00P-11:00P 3,516
23 NCIS USA Mon 07:00P-08:00P 3,498
24 SPONGEBOB NICK Sun 11:30A-12:00P 3,456
25 MAGIC/HAWKS TNT Mon 08:00P-10:44P 3,400

Adult Swim
Adult Swim’s across-the-board, double-digit Total Day delivery gains among targeted young adults once again propelled the network to the #1 ranking for the week among all ad-supported basic cable networks.  Compared to the same time period last year, overall adults 18-34 delivery (506,000) grew by 23%, adults 18-24 delivery (301,000) grew by 28%, men 18-34 delivery (288,000) grew by 24% and men 18-24 delivery (164,000) grew by 17%.  Even adults 18-49 total day delivery (663,000) grew by 19%.

Among the network’s original programming, an all-new episode of THE BOONDOCKS (Sunday, 11:30 p.m.) ranked #1 in its timeslot on all television among adults and men 18-34 and 18-24.  Versus the 2009 time period, adults 18-34 delivery (1,123,000) grew by 26%, adults 18-24 delivery (698,000) grew by 71%, men 18-34 delivery (695,000) grew by 26% and men 18-24 delivery (407,000) grew by 80%.

FAMILY GUY (Monday, 11 p.m.) also scored double-digit delivery increases among all targeted young adult demos: adults 18-34 delivery (1,221,000) grew by 21%, adults 18-24 delivery (805,000) grew by 33%, men 18-34 delivery (751,000) grew by 33% and men 18-24 delivery (492,000) grew by 39%.

Adult Swim telecasts—including presentations of FAMILY GUY, THE BOONDOCKS, ROBOT CHICKEN, SQUIDBILLIES and AQUA TEEN HUNGER FORCE—accounted for a remarkable 23 of the Top 50 Telecasts of the Week on ad-supported basic cable among adults 18-34.

Cartoon Network
For the sixth straight week, Cartoon Network enjoyed solid double-digit ratings and delivery gains—ranging between 12%-19%—across all kids demos in prime time.  Compared to the same time period in 2009, average kids 6-11 prime time delivery (482,000) grew by 13% and ratings (2.0) grew by 18%; kids 2-11 prime time delivery (718,000) grew by 19% and ratings (1.7) by 13%; and kids 9-14 prime time delivery (361,000) grew by 12% and ratings (1.5) by 15%.

Total day ratings and delivery also increased across all kid demos vs. the same 2009 time period: kids 6-11 delivery (314,000) increased by 9% and ratings (1.3) by 8%; kids 2-11 delivery (531,000) increased by 17% and ratings (1.3) by 18%; and kids 9-14 delivery (225,000) increased by 10% and ratings (0.9) by 13%.

Cartoon Network’s new Monday night animated comedy line-up (8-10 p.m.) earned delivery gains between 27% – 57% across the board.  The newest hit series ADVENTURE TIME (8 p.m.) launched the evening by scoring as the #1 show in its timeslot on all television among boys 6-11, boys 2-11 and boys 9-14, earning triple-digit gains across the board.  Delivery among boys 6-11 (559,000) improved by 131%, boys 2-11 delivery (750,000) improved by 103% and boys 9-14 delivery (419,000) improved by 144%.  Overall kids delivery also earned mostly triple-digit gains vs. the time period last year: kids 6-11 delivery (776,000) increased by 120%, kids 2-11 delivery (1,073,000) increased by 93% and kids 9-14 delivery (587,000) increased by 127%.

Immediately following ADVENTURE TIME, two additional original animated series—FLAPJACK (8:30 p.m.) and CHOWDER (9 p.m.)—also scored significant gains vs. last year.  FLAPJACK’s overall delivery increases among kids 6-11, 2-11 and 9-14 grew between 30% – 37%.  CHOWDER’s overall delivery increases among the same kids demos grew between 12% – 26%.

On Friday night, Cartoon Network’s newest animated action-adventure GENERATOR REX (8:30 p.m.) scored the #1 ranking in its timeslot on all television among boys 2-11 and boys 6-11—and the #2 program on all television that day among boys 6-11.

GENERATOR REX showed delivery gains among all key demos versus the same time period last year.  Kids 6-11 delivery (717,000) grew by 38% and boys 6-11 delivery (614,000) grew by 43%; Kids 2-11 delivery (1,057,000) grew by 40% and boys 2-11 delivery (831,000) grew by 34%; and kids 9-14 delivery (527,000) grew by 53% and boys 9-14 delivery (487,000) grew by 72%. BEN 10: ULTIMATE ALIEN (8 p.m.) showed solid gains across key demos as well.  Kids 6-11 delivery (619,000) grew by 70% and boys 6-11 delivery (517,000) grew by 80%; kids 2-11 delivery (946,000) grew by 68% and boys 2-11 delivery (723,000) grew by 62%; and kids 9-14 delivery (506,000) grew by 128% and boys 9-14 delivery (447,000) grew by 147%.

Another line-up showing continued growth, the Wednesday night presentation of live-action alternative series DESTROY BUILD DESTROY (8 p.m.) and DUDE, WHAT WOULD HAPPEN (8:30 p.m.) also earned significant ratings and delivery gains among all kids and boys demos. DUDE, WHAT WOULD HAPPEN scored 84% increases among kids 6-11 delivery (681,000), 67% increases among kids 2-11 delivery (950,000), and 80% delivery growth among kids 9-14 delivery (541,000).  Among boy demos, DESTROY BUILD DESTROY earned 25% delivery gains among boys 6-11 (403,000), 14% delivery gains among boys 2-11 (547,000) and 6% delivery gains among boys 9-14 (287,000).

With especially strong numbers for Tuesday’s Celtics/Cavaliers match-up and Monday’s Lakers/Jazz contest, the NBA Playoffs once again led TNT to rank as ad-supported cable’s #1 network in primetime delivery of adults 18-34 (657,000); adults 18-49 (1.3 million); and adults 25-54 (1.3 million).  TNT also took the top spot in total day among adults 18-49 (703,000) and adults 25-54 (713,000).

TBS’s sitcoms delivered more wins for the network.  With 2.6 million viewers and 1.5 million adults 18-49 tuning in, the Wednesday 10:30 p.m. episode of Tyler Perry’s House of Payne scored ad-supported cable’s #1 sitcom telecast for the week.

With House of Payne leading the pack, TBS claimed nine of ad-supported cable’s Top 10 sitcom telecasts for the week among adults 18-49.  TBS also delivered eight of the Top 10 sitcom telecasts among adults 18-34, with The Office ranking #1.

truTV continued to show year-over-year growth, with this past week’s delivery of adults 18-49 up 6%, men 18-49 up 6% and total viewers up 5%.

Midway through Q2 2010, the network is ranking among ad-supported cable’s Top 10 networks in its key demo:  men 18-49 (280,000).

Monday at 8:30 p.m., truTV’s hit series Operation Repo ranked among cable’s Top 5 entertainment programs in its timeslot in delivery of adults 18-49 (734,000); men 18-34 (194,000); and men 18-49 (384,000).

Thursday at 9 p.m., The Smoking Gun Presents: World’s Dumbest… scored a Top 5 cable entertainment program ranking for its timeslot in delivery of men 18-49 (364,000).

Nielsen Ratings Data: ©2010 The Nielsen Company. All Rights Reserved.  All ratings above Live+SD (live viewing plus same day DVR viewing)

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