Team USA Finishes 4th In Winter Olympics Medal Count
NEW YORK (AP) — Counting up the medals, Pyeongchang was a lackluster Olympics for the U.S. team, and the post-mortems will soon begin about what went right and wrong.
Norway led the way with 39 medals (14 gold), followed by Germany, Canada and the US (9 gold, 23 total).
It's worth taking the same look at NBC's performance, because the network is locked into showing the Olympics every two years through 2032.
NBC tried some new things, and new people, to supplement a blueprint it has followed for several years.
THE BOTTOM LINE
The network started strong in the ratings, and has faded in the homestretch in part, executives believe, because more people became absorbed in the news following the Florida school shooting.
The company will turn a profit, and said it will hit the ratings guarantees it promised to advertisers, an important financial barometer.
Through Thursday, NBC had averaged 20.6 million viewers in prime time for the network, the NBCSN cable network and streaming services. That's down 8 percent from the Sochi Olympics in 2014, when the broadcast network was the only prime-time option (viewership on NBC alone is down 18 percent).
Young viewers are slipping away faster, and a Seton Hall University poll found people aged 18-to-29 were nearly as likely to stream the Olympics on their devices as watch on TV.
Among the new wrinkles was NBC's decision to broadcast its Olympic show live across the country, meaning West Coast viewers were not just stuck with a rerun of the East Coast's prime-time show.
That turned out to be well-suited to the time difference. NBC's late-night show on the East Coast — which aired in prime time out West — was filled with live events, including the gripping gold medal women's hockey game between the U.S. and Canada. Ratings went up for this time slot, which NBC dubbed Prime-time Plus.
Get used to the template, since the next two Olympics (Tokyo in 2020, Beijing in 2022) have similar time differences.