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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Wed., May 13) -- Mavs' last gasp again deflates 10 p.m. newscasts

Ask D-FW station managers and they'll tell you they're just as glad that the Dallas Mavericks are over and done for this season.

Their playoff run, which ended with Game 5's loss in Denver, kept driving a stake through the 10 p.m. newscast ratings. Wednesday was no different. Mavs-Nuggets, which ran from 8:12 to 10:46 p.m. on TNT, averaged 312,221 D-FW viewers. But the haul was considerably higher between 10 and 10:30 p.m., when the outcome was still in doubt. Here's how it looked during that half-hour:

Mavs-Nuggets -- 405,223 viewers
CBS11 newscast -- 219,219 viewers
NBC5 and WFAA8 newscasts -- 166,075 viewers apiece
Fox4 newscast -- 159,432 viewers

Had the Mavericks somehow won the Denver series, they likely would have faced the Los Angeles Lakers in another batch of late-starting playoff games. And that would have further deflated the potential crowds for 10 p.m. newscasts.

In other Wednesday ratings results, Fox's American Idol swaggered with 484,939 viewers in the 8 p.m. Danny Gokey was evicted, setting up next week's final between prohibitive favorite Adam Lambert and Kris Allen, whose teenybop appeal shouldn't be underestimated even though he'd be the first married contestant to win if he pulls off an upset.

Fox's 7 p.m. season finale of Lie to Me, which has been renewed for a second season, ran a close second in total viewers to NBC's Law & Order: Criminal Intent. But it took the top spot among advertiser-craved 18-to-49-year-olds.

The two-hour season finale of ABC's Lost, which ended with a nuclear bomb seemingly exploding on the island, drew 152,789 total viewers to run third overall from 8 to 10 p.m. Lost also had the bronze among 18-to-49-year-olds.

The other local news derby results went like this.

WFAA8 won by a sliver at 10 p.m. among 25-to-54-year-olds, with NBC5 part of the photo finish and Fox4 and CBS11 right behind.

The Peacock continued its winning ways at 6 a.m., where it again swept the competition and has a hammer-lock on first place with just five weekdays remaining in the May sweeps. Fox4 was second as usual while WFAA8 and CBS11 tied for third place in both ratings measurements.

NBC5 and WFAA8 tied for first at 6 p.m. in total viewers, but Fox4 had the gold to itself among 25-to-54-year-olds. WFAA8 ran the table at 5 p.m.