Originally created 06/16/04

NBA Finals leads ABC to top of Nielsen rankings



NEW YORK -- Basketball did for ABC what its regular programming can't - lead the network to the top of the Nielsen Media Research rankings.

Three games of the National Basketball Associations finals between the Detroit Pistons and Los Angeles Lakers were easily the week's three most-watched prime-time programs.

In an indication that viewers are starting to flee for the summer, "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" was the most-watched scripted show last week with 13.8 million viewers. That's about half what the CBS drama gets for first-run episodes.

The premiere of Fox's "The Jury" had only 4.2 million viewers.

For the week, ABC averaged 8.6 million viewers, and CBS had 8.4 million (both 5.7 ratings, 10 shares), NBC 7.3 million (4.9, 9), Fox 4.4 million (2.9, 5), UPN 2.8 million (1.8, 3), the WB 2.4 million (1.7, 3) and Pax TV 950,000 (0.6, 1).

NBC's "Nightly News" won the evening news ratings race, averaging 8.7 million viewers (6.1 rating, 13 share). ABC's "World News Tonight" had 7.8 million (5.5, 12) and the "CBS Evening News" 6.6 million (4.8, 10).

A ratings point represents 1,084,000 households, or 1 percent of the nation's estimated 108.4 million TV homes. The share is the percentage of in-use televisions tuned to a given show.

Prime-time viewership numbers compiled by Nielsen Media Research for June 7-13. Listings include the week's ranking, with viewership for the week and season-to-date rankings in parentheses. An "X" in parentheses denotes a one-time-only presentation.

1. (X) NBA Finals, Game 4: L.A. Lakers at Detroit, ABC, 20.3 million viewers.

2. (X) NBA Finals, Game 3: L.A. Lakers at Detroit, ABC, 16.2 million viewers.

3. (X) NBA Finals, Game 2: Detroit at L.A. Lakers, ABC, 16.1 million viewers.

4. (1) "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," CBS, 13.8 million viewers.

5. (12) "Without a Trace," CBS, 13.3 million viewers.

6. (11) "Everybody Loves Raymond," CBS, 13.2 million viewers.

7. (14) "Two and a Half Men," CBS, 12.6 million viewers.

8. (9) "CSI: Miami," CBS, 12.1 million viewers.

9. (22) "Law & Order: Special Victim's Unit," NBC, 11.3 million viewers.

10. (18) "Cold Case," CBS, 11.2 million viewers.

11. (X) "Last Comic Standing" special, NBC, 10.7 million viewers.

12. (17) "60 Minutes," CBS, 10.6 million viewers.

13. (24) "Crossing Jordan," NBC, 9.9 million viewers.

14. (22) "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," NBC, 9.9 million viewers.

15. (47) "48 Hours Mystery," CBS, 9.3 million viewers.

16. (64) "Last Comic Standing," NBC, 9.1 million viewers.

17. (31) "Still Standing," CBS, 8.6 million viewers.

18. (27) "Fear Factor," NBC, 8.2 million viewers.

19. (34) "CBS Sunday Movie: See You in My Dreams," CBS, 8.1 million viewers.

20. (40) "60 Minutes II," CBS, 7.7 million viewers.

On the Net:

http://www.nielsenmedia.com