NBC’s opening night coverage of the Olympics on Friday, Feb 12, drew the second-largest audience for a first night of a Winter Olympics since 1994, according to the Los Angeles Times’ Company Town blog, citing figures from Nielsen Media Research.
The coverage drew an average of 32.6 million viewers. The opening of the 2002 Winter Games remain No. 1 in the past 14 years. Those games were held in the U.S. (Salt Lake City), and drew an average of 45.6 million viewers.
According to the report: "Four years ago, an average of 22.2 million viewers — 10 million fewer than Friday night –watched the opening ceremony when the events were held in Turin, Italy. NBC said a total of 67.5 million people in the U.S. watched all or some of its prime-time telecast from Vancouver on Friday."