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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Thurs., April 23) -- Mavs power up; May sweeps start

The Dallas Mavericks' home court blowout of San Antonio Thursday night also whipped all competing prime-time programming, including new episodes of Grey's Anatomy and CSI: Crime Scene Investigation.

That made it a ratings windfall for TXA21, which for the first time pretty much had the game to itself. That's because the still obscure NBA TV secured Thursday's cable/dish rights, compared to ESPN for Game 1 and TNT for Game 2 of the Mavs-Spurs playoff series.

Game 3, which ended at 9:44 p.m., averaged a robust 312,221 D-FW viewers, peaking at 458,367 between 9:30 and 9:45 p.m. Ratings for NBA TV weren't available, but it's safe to say they amounted to little if anything.

From 8 to 9 p.m., CBS' CSI (259,077 viewers) and ABC's Grey's Anatomy (245,791 viewers) both fell short of the Mavs' 272,363 viewers. The game also beat all competing programming among advertiser-coveteted 18-to-49-year-olds.

The Texas Rangers' latest loss, on MY27, drew 66,430 long-suffering viewers.

Thursday also marked the start of the four-week May "sweeps" ratings period, with D-FW's four major TV news providers all jockeying for position.

WFAA8 opened strong at 10 p.m., winning in both total viewers and 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming. But the ABC station had problems elsewhere.

At 6 a.m., Fox4 edged NBC5 for first place in total viewers, with WFAA8 and CBS11 tying for third. The Peacock had the gold with 25-to-54-year-olds, knocking Fox4 to second while WFAA8 had third place to itself.

NBC5 won at 5 p.m. in both ratings measurements, ending a modest winning streak for WFAA's recently retooled newscast.

The spoils were split at 6 p.m., with NBC5 first in total viewers and Fox4 on top among 25-to-54-year-olds. WFAA8, usually strong in this time period, dipped to third place across the board.