NBA Brings TNT Even with Nick

Propelled by its coverage of the National Basketball Association playoffs, Turner Network Television grabbed a share of the primetime-household-ratings crown, matching kids’ kingpin Nickelodeon.

Both networks earned 2.4 household marks May 2-9, according to an ABC Cable Networks Group analysis of Nielsen Media Research data.

Nick at Nite, benefiting from a new Nielsen measurement standard, was third with a 1.7.

Beginning with its April month, Nielsen began reporting Nick at Nite and Nick -- which share the same channel position -- as separate services. Nick’s primetime constitutes nine hours, while NAN’s totals one-dozen. Other networks are measured over a 21-hour period.

According to the ABC Cable analysis, USA Network was fourth with a 1.6, ahead of Cartoon Network and Disney Channel with a 1.5 apiece.

Rounding out the top 10: Lifetime Television with a 1.3; Fox News Channel and ESPN, each with a 1.2 mark; and TBS Superstation at a 1.1.

The May 5 NBA matchup between the Los Angeles Lakers and San Antonio Spurs was the highest-rated show of the week, dunking a 5.0, while the playoff contest the night before between the Minnesota Timberwolves and Sacramento Kings posted up a 3.9, good for a piece of third place.

Spike TV’s coverage of World Wrestling Entertainment Inc. fare May 3 pinned the second and fourth slots with a 4.1 and a 3.7.

Backing out an episode of MTV: Music Television’s Real World XIV May 4, Nick claimed 11 of the top 15 slots overall, led by special Timmy Jimmy Power Hour May 7, which matched the Timberwolves/Kings game. That special, which premiered at 8 p.m., brought in nearly 5 million total viewers, who watched boy genius Jimmy Neutron meet Timmy Turner from Fairly OddParents.

Other Nick shows in basic cable’s upper ratings echelon last week: Jimmy Neutron, OddParents, Danny Phantom and SpongeBob SquarePants.