ABC won another night with the NBA Finals. Game 3 (Miami beating Oklahoma City and taking a 2-1 lead in the series) averaged a 5.6 preliminary Adults 18-49 rating from 8-11 pm, although that number will rise to a 7 or more when the official nationals are released tomorrow morning. For the entire evening (including Jimmy Kimmel Live and the NBA Countdown show), ABC is averaging a 4.8 rating from 7-11 pm. The nightly average should rise to over a 5 when the official nationals are released.
NBC is in second place with a preliminary 2.2 rating from 7-11 pm. The final round of the U.S. Open golf championship averaged a 2.3 rating from 7:00-10:30 pm, and that number should rise to around a 2.8 in the official nationals. As forecast here yesterday, Tiger Woods collapsed on the front nine in the final round (shooting 6 over par for the first six holes alone Sunday). By 7 pm ET and the start of prime time in the East, Woods was completely out of it, leaving Webb Simpson in the club house watching to see if Jim Furyk would blow it (he did spectacularly) and if Graeme McDowell could rally late and force a playoff (close but no cigar). Not exactly household names, these golfers made the prime time rating nearly identical to 2010 (the last time the Open was played in prime time), a 2.9 from 7:00-9:30, and nowhere near the gold standard of 2008 (a 4.7 from 7-9 pm, with late heroics by Tiger Woods). Certainly an improvement over recent NBC Sundays and any other nights not featuring America’s Got Talent or The Voice but clearly a disappointment for NBC Sports and the USGA. The most entertaining television moment at the U.S. Open did not come from a player, however. An idiot managed to elude any security during the trophy presentation on the 18th green, framed his mug almost perfectly in a close-up shot, and interrupted Bob Costas interviewing champion Webb Simpson by making odd bird noises. The image of him being yanked out of view by a tournament official was priceless.
FOX averaged a 1.2 from 7-10 pm with repeat animated comedies, while CBS logged a 0.8 rating with 60 Minutes and repeat dramas.
Cable ratings from Sunday will be added as they are announced later today.