UPDATE, 12:30PM: The final scores are in and it is a Bronze for NBC’s Sochi Olympics primetime coverage last night. On a night of almost no original programming competition from the other networks, NBC’s tape-delayed 8:30PM – 11PM broadcast drew a 9.6/17 national household rating and 17.1 million viewers. In terms of ratings, that’s a 37% drop from NBC’s coverage of the almost live Vancouver 2010 games and 18% behind what the tape-delayed Torino 2006 games pulled in on comparable nights. It is also the worst that NBC has done so far this Olympics. Vancouver had a 14.7/24 result with 26.7 million viewers while Torino had an 11.3/19 household ratings result and an audience of 19.7 million. On the first Saturday primetime of the 2014 Winter Games, right after the Opening Ceremony of the night before, NBC snagged a 13.9/24 household ratings result and 25.1 million viewers. Last night was 33% fall in the ratings and a 31% drop in viewers from the same night a week before.
PREVIOUS, 8:51 AM: The second Saturday of the Sochi Olympics saw Meredith Vieira subbing in for the still ailing Bob Costas on NBC and a whole lot of hockey highlights from the dramatic USA-Russia men’s game earlier in the day. It also saw NBC’s tape-delayed primetime coverage pull in a 4.2/13 rating and 16.58 million viewers in early fast nationals. On the traditionally least watched TV night of the week, that’s the worst performance the network has had so far these Games – dipping 6% and 15% respectively from
NBC’s previous low of a 4.5/19 rating and 19.5 million viewers on Valentine’s Day. Saturday’s result also slide a hard 37% from the 6.8/21 rating of the virtually live Vancouver 2010 Games on the comparable night of February 20 of that year. That second Saturday of the Vancouver games was watched by 26.7 million viewers. Last night’s results are also a 32% drop from the 6.2/20 rating and audience of 25.1 million that the first full day of Sochi competition garnered for NBC on February 8, the day after the Opening Ceremony.
With the exception of the 48 Hours Presents: The Whole Gritty City docu (0.4/2) on CBS, the competition was all encores and movies on the other networks last night. However, the Olympics did have to face off against the NBA All-Star Weekend’s crowd-pleasing Slam Dunk contest on TNT and that truly jaw-dropping off the mascot, double-pump reverse dunk from the Washington Wizard’s John Wall. With that said, we’ll update with final Olympics ratings info as it comes in later today.
In the meantime, here’s some more Olympics numbers to put things in a bit more perspective. Last night’s NBC primetime coverage got a 10.3/18 rating in overnight metered-markets. The national household rating for the respective night of the Vancouver games four years ago was a 14.7/24. That was up 30% from the 11.3/19 result of comparable Saturday night of the Torino Olympics in 2006. The tape-delayed coverage of that Saturday 8 years ago was watched by an audience of 19.7 million – 36% less than watched Vancouver coverage on February 20, 2010.