Championship sparks no XFL ratings rally

The XFL played its probable swansong on NBC with its championship game drawing less than three million primetime viewers on Saturday night.

The Los Angeles Xtreme's 38-6 drubbing of the San Francisco Demons hit a 1.2 rating, 4 share among adults 18-49 in Nielsen fast national numbers. That's a slight improvement from the opening XFL playoff contest on NBC, but not the kind of number that will change NBC's thinking about bailing out on its $100 million partnership with the World Wrestling Federation.

NBC Sports chairman Dick Ebersol has indicated it would take a major turnaround in ratings during the XFL playoffs to keep NBC in the game. WWF honcho Vince McMahon has already declared his intention to pursue a deal with UPN as the XFL's primary broadcast partner for a second season. - Richard Tedesco