Tiger Woods‘ fourth victory of the season provided a massive lift to the “fifth major” of the PGA Tour season.
Final round coverage of the PGA Tour The Players Championship drew a 5.0 final rating and 7.6 million viewers on NBC Sunday afternoon, up 56% in ratings and 59% in viewership from last year (3.2, 4.8M), and up 61% and 63%, respectively, from 2011 (3.1, 4.7M).
The 5.0 rating is the highest for any round of the tournament since 2001, when rain-delayed Sunday coverage drew a 5.3. Woods went on to win that 2001 tournament on a Monday afternoon.
In addition, the 7.6 million viewers ranks as the largest audience for the tournament in “more than 20 years” (NBC, 5/14).
Excluding majors, Sunday’s final round ranks as the highest rated golf telecast on any network in more than six years — since the final round of the 2007 Buick Invitational (5.3), also won by Woods. This season’s previous high was a 3.7 for Woods’ victory at the WGC-Cadillac Championship at Doral.
On Saturday, third round coverage drew a 2.6 and 3.7 million viewers — up 13% in ratings and 12% in viewership from last year, and up 86% and 74%, respectively, from rain-delayed coverage in 2011 (1.4, 2.1M).
Ratings For Third/Final Round Coverage of The Players Championship
* 2005 third round aired on Sunday; final round aired on Monday. Second round action on Saturday drew a 3.0 rating.
(Weekend numbers from NBC Sports Group Press Box)