NBC survives hype to win the week


Despite all of the headlines going to CBS' Survivor and ABC's Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?, NBC was back on top in both adults 18-49 and total viewers in the weekly network ratings race.

With help from the NBA Finals and strong ratings for repeats of shows such as Law & Order, NBC was able to hold off its rivals. NBC claimed first place in both categories for the week of June 5-11, averaging a 4.4 rating in adults 18-49 and 10.7 million viewers, according to Nielsen Media Research.

Despite lower than usual averages for the NBA Finals between the Los Angeles Lakers and Indiana Pacers, the first three games of the series all finished in the top 10 shows of the week in total viewers. The first three NBA Final games on NBC averaged 15.4 million viewers. Following NBC in a very tight race for total viewers was CBS, which attracted an average of 10.6 million viewers. CBS' second installment of Survivor finished the week as the third-most-watched show with 18.1 million viewers.

ABC's Millionaire locked down the top two spots in total viewers. ABC finished the week second to NBC in adults 18-49 with a 3.4 national rating average and third in total viewers with a 9.4 million average. The Sunday (June 11) episode of Millionaire averaged 26.3 million viewers and the Tuesday (June 6) episode attracted 23.6 million viewers.

CBS (3.3) finished the week in third place among adults 18-49. FOX finished in fourth place in both categories, averaging a 2.7 in adults 18-49 and 6.5 million viewers for the week. UPN beat The WB on both fronts again, averaging a 1.5 in adults 18-49 and 3.8 million viewers. The WB scored a 1.0 in adults 18-49 and 2.4 million watchers.