NBC’s eighth night of coverage of the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, continued to trail the ratings for the Winter Games four years ago, but the numbers were the class of the field against the network’s prime-time broadcast competition.
Citing Nielsen overnights for the key 18-49 demo, TVbytheNumbers.com reports that the Winter Games delivered a 5.9 average rating in prime time Thursday night — off the pace of the equivalent night in the 2010 Olympics, which pulled in a 7.1 average.
Fox’s "American Idol" appeared to take another hit going head-to-head with the Olympics, falling two-tenths of a ratings point from last week to a 2.9 average in 18-49. Fox’s "Rake" held steady with a 1.1 as Fox finished a distant second overall behind NBC.
CBS continued to sit on the sidelines, airing repeat programming and settling for a third-place overall finish behind NBC and Fox. ABC aired a fresh two-hour installment of "The Taste," which dipped one-tenth of a point from last week in the 18-49 demo to a 0.9 average.
For prime time overall, NBC’s 5.9 average was the best number by far in adults 18-49, followed by Fox (2.0 average), CBS (1.6), Univision (1.2) and ABC (0.8). NBC was equally dominant in total viewers, averaging 22.89 million to lead CBS (7.02 million), Fox (6.96 million), Univision (3.07 million) and ABC (2.78 million).