The final results are in and it looks like a gold by a nose for NBCs Sunday primetime Olympics coverage. The network’s 7:30-11 PM package last night scored a 14.4/22 household rating with 26.3 million viewers. That’s up by a slender margin from the 14.3/23 that NBC received for the first Sunday of the last Winter Games in Vancouver in 2010. That February 14 night had 26.4 million viewers. Perhaps more significantly, NBC, as it has the first few days of this year’s Games from Sochi, Russia, saw a 8% and 13% rise in household ratings and viewership, respectively, from the 13.3/20 rating and 23.2 million the first Sunday of the last Euro Winter Olympics in Torino saw in 2006.
Additionally, NBC might be a little pumped up by their combined viewership totals for Friday’s Opening Ceremony and Saturday’s first official full day of competition. Put together, those two days got a total of 97.3 million viewers for NBC. That’s a bop up from the 96.7 million who watched the Vancouver Winter Games over its first two days. It’s important to put those numbers in the context that unlike tape-delayed Sochi, Vancouver’s Opening Ceremony was aired live on the East Coast in the U.S. The first two official days of the 2014 Winter Games were also up almost 9 million viewers from the first two days of the 2006 Torino Games, which pulled in 88.4 million.