For the second time in three nights, NBC earned the smallest primetime audience of the 2012 London Olympics.
Tape delayed primetime coverage of the 2012 Summer Olympics drew a 15.8 final rating and 26.6 million viewers on NBC Monday night, even in ratings and up 1% in viewership from Beijing in 2008 (15.8, 26.374M), and down 4% and up 2%, respectively, compared to Athens in 2004 (16.4, 25.943M).
The comparable night of the most recent Olympics — the 2010 Winter Olympics from Vancouver — earned a 12.5 and 20.926 million.
Monday’s telecast ranks as the lowest rated and least-viewed of the Olympics so far, falling below Saturday’s primetime coverage (15.9, 27.964M).
Despite being the least-viewed primetime telecast of the Olympics, Monday’s window still outdrew all non-NFL sporting events since the Auburn/Oregon BCS National Championship Game in January 2011 (27.316M).
Through Monday, primetime coverage of the 2012 London Olympics averaged an 18.5 rating and 33.1 million viewers on NBC, up 8% in ratings and 12% in viewership from 2008 (17.2, 29.6M), and up 17% and 26%, respectively, from 2004 (15.8, 26.2M).
The 18.5 rating is the highest for any Olympics through the second Monday since Atlanta in 1996 (22.8) — even topping Salt Lake City in 2002 (17.9), the most recent U.S.-based Olympics.
Excluding U.S.-based Olympics, the London Olympics ranks as the highest rated through the second Monday since Lillehammer in 1994 (25.0).
(Monday’s numbers and 11-night average from NBC Universal Media Village)