The first Wednesday of the 2014 Sochi Olympics saw Matt Lauer sitting in for an ailing Bob Costas again on NBC‘s primetime coverage and the return of an old rivalry. It wasn’t the U.S. and Canada women’s hockey teams — though they did play yesterday. Rather it was a direct match-up with American Idol. For just the second Winter Games in a row, NBC’s coverage beat the Fox singing competition in adults 18-49 and viewership – but not by as wide a margin as in 2010. Otherwise, it looks like NBC might want to get Costas back as soon as possible. Overall, fueled by snowboarding, lots of skating, and Slovenia’s Tina Maze and Switzerland’s Dominique Gisin’s historic downhill Alpine skiing gold medal tie, the network’s primetime broadcast drew a 5.6/16 rating last night. That’s a weeknight low for the Sochi Games and down a hard 37% from the 8.9/23 of the comparable night of February 17, 2010 at the Vancouver Olympics. That Wednesday four years ago was one of the biggest nights ratingswise of the Vancouver Games. NBC’s Wednesday Olympics package last night pulled in 20.77 million viewers, another fall from four years ago when the audience was a stellar 29.3 million. By the way, NBC announced this morning that Lauer will be at the Olympics anchor desk again tonight. We’ll update with Wednesday’s final Olympics numbers when they come in.