ESPN’s Record Draft

04/26/2010 at 6:32 pm | Posted in Net/Spec | Leave a comment
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This year’s NFL draft was the most watched in ESPN‘s history.

Here’s the press release:

ESPN’s Most-Watched NFL Draft Ever Among Viewers

ESPN’s live three-day telecast of the 2010 NFL Draft – including the first two nights in prime time for the first time – was the most-watched NFL Draft ever among viewers and the second most-watched ever among households in the network’s 31 years televising the event. Overall, the 14.5 hours of 2010 NFL Draft coverage on ESPN and ESPN2 averaged 2,853,000 households and 3,717,000 viewers (based on fast nationals) — up 24% and 27%, respectively from last year, according to Nielsen Media Research.

The 2010 Draft finished just 2,000 households shy of the record-setting 2006 audience (2,855,000 households).

On Friday night, ESPN’s one-hour of coverage (6-7 p.m. ET) for the start of Round 2 delivered a 2.6 rating, 2,534,000 households, and 3,152,000 viewers. Coverage continued on ESPN2 from 7-10:30 p.m., delivering a 2.6 rating, 2,606,000 households, and 3,369,000 viewers. Together, the two networks averaged 2,590,000 households and 3,320,000 viewers Friday night – up 10% and 6%, respectively, for Round 2 a year ago.

ESPN’s day-long coverage on Saturday (10 a.m.-5:19 p.m.) delivered a 1.8 household rating, a 13% increase from a 1.6 for the corresponding coverage (on Sunday) in 2009.

As previously reported, ESPN’s Thursday night telecast (7:30-11:20 p.m. ET) of Round 1 delivered a 5.3 rating and 7,290,000 viewers, 23% higher than last year’s first round (4.3). Also, the telecast equaled the 5.3 rating from ESPN’s first round in 2006 and surpassed that year’s viewership mark of 5,925,000.

Highest-Rated of the 56 Metered Markets:
Friday on ESPN (6-7 p.m.):
Cleveland – 7.5
New Orleans – 6.2
Kansas City – 6.1
Columbus, Ohio – 5.2
Austin, Texas – 4.2

Friday on ESPN2 (7-10:30 p.m.):
Greenville, S.C. – 6.5
Washington, DC – 5.9
Portland, Oregon – 5.5
Hartford/New Haven, Conn. – 4.6
Birmingham, Ala. – 4.1

Saturday on ESPN (10 a.m. – 5:19 p.m.):
Phoenix – 4.0
Dayton, Ohio – 3.6
Tampa/St. Petersburg, Fla. – 3.6
Houston – 3.0
Atlanta – 2.9

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