Santa had a brand new bag for Friday Christmas night network ratings, and it was a mixed offering, not unlike the gifts around the Christmas tree.
The National Basketball Association’s day-long celebration of sports led the demos, scoring a 1.1 and 3.74 million total audience for its hours-long programming for ABC and ESPN. That’s the good news – the bad news is that’s down massively from past performances. In a season where the NBA is trying to lure back fans who were turned off by last season’s overt politics and the less-stimulating bubble version of the sport, it shows there’s a lot of ground to make up.
ABC’s Black-ish benefited from the strong lead-in of basketball and managed to hold it, even with a repeat. It came in with an 0.7, as Dre took the family to his hometown of Compton, Calif
Fox’s WWE Friday Night SmackDown had a solid night, scoring an 0.6 and a total audience of 3.3 million just slightly behind the NBA. The highlight was the steel cage match between Roman Reigns and Kevin Owens for the Universal Championship.
At the CW, the finals of The Christmas Caroler Championship had an 0.1 for its two hour-long segments.
NBC ran the old animated and new live action versions of How The Grinch Stole Christmas! The animation had an 0.4 in the early slot, while Jim Carrey’s movie version hit an 0.5 to follow.
CBS ran repeats of its crime drama lineup on the evening.
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