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NBC's Thursday Still Strong, But CBS Gaining

NBC still is winning Thursday nights in adults 18-49, but CBS is narrowing the gap while it takes first place on the night in viewers and adults 25-54.

Key to NBC’s strength is Friends
, which was the highest-rated show of the week in adults 18-49 with a 10.3/28.

After Friends
, NBC went up and down all night, with Scrubs
dropping 28% from Friends
’ lead-in to a 7.4/19, Will & Grace
holding that at a 7.5/18 and Coupling
dropping drastically with a 5.6/13.

While the combination of Friends
and Scrubs
beat Survivor: Pearl Islands
, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
came back to win the 9 p.m. hour with a 9.7/23. ER
regained strength at 10 p.m. with a 9.3/24 in adults 18-49, beating Without a Trace
’s 5.3/13.

Overall, NBC won the night in adults 18-49 by 8.3/21 versus CBS’ 7.6/19. Fox came in third with a Major League Baseball playoff game between the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees, with a 4.9/13.

ABC was fourth with its lineup of Threat Matrix
, Extreme Makeover
and PrimeTime Thursday
with a 2.9/7. UPN’s WWE Smackdown!
was fifth in the demo with a 2.1/5, and The WB Television Network was sixth with 0.9/2.

In viewers, CBS won with 21 million compared with NBC’s 17.3 million. Fox was third with 13.4 million, ABC was fourth with 8.4 million, UPN was fifth with 5.3 million and The WB sixth with 2.5 million.