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Weird: NBC's ratings highest in delayed areas

From Variety comes news that NBC is getting higher ratings in those parts of the U.S. where the Olympics are shown on a tape delay vs. the Central and Eastern zones that saw many swimming and gymnastics events live.

The Games continue to fare better west of the Mississippi, with the Mountain time zone averaging a 22.7 household rating/41 share in the metered-market overnights. Among other regions, the West is running second (20.3/39), followed by the Central time zone (19.4/33) and Eastern (18.6/33).

This would seem to go against the logic that people could check the results before watching and choose to not tune in. Or maybe people out West are simply more into the Olympics.

Also, more evidence of the Michael Phelps effect on ratings, from Variety:

Michael Phelps continues to deliver some splashy ratings for NBC's coverage of the Beijing Games, as the swimmer's pursuit of a record eighth gold medal contributed to the net's largest aud on a Saturday in 18 years.

Nielsen estimates that the Peacock net averaged 31.1 million viewers from 8 to 11:44 p.m. Saturday. And as has been the case most nights, viewership peaked later in the evening, with 40 million tuning in on average in the 11 o'clock half-hour when Phelps captured the gold as part of the 4x100 medley relay.