Originally Posted by bucksfan2
TBS is a top 10 basic cable station. Behind the History Channel and Fox News. When you add in Fox, NBC, CBS, and ABC you have a station outside of the top 10 carrying your playoffs.
For the sake of this discussion, ratings don't matter one iota. Especially not something as specific as prime time only ratings (which is what the linked article was reporting on). During those three hours, TBS shows nonstop reruns of "Family Guy" and other sitcoms; they provide alternative "comfort viewing" rather than must-see first run shows, and actually do pretty well with it (probably VERY well, once you factor in how much cheaper reruns of sitcoms are versus first run shows).
What is important, and what you should give a poop about, is TBS' cable penetration. And I'm not even gonna bother looking it up; I'm just gonna tell you that it's probably 98% or higher. Unless you're one of those hipster weenisses who purposely slums it without cable/satellite, you have TBS. And you have it smack dab in the middle of line-up (no going looking for it up in the 400s because it's some weirdo fetish channel). If TBS decides to show something that IS must-see and first run, only the developmentally challenged would have a hard time finding it.
In terms of availability and profile, there is pretty much no difference between TBS and ESPN. I mean, there are differences in terms of production and on-air personalities (and I've tended to find TBS lacking in this area, but no more so than any broadcast featuring Tim F. McCarver), but in terms of viewers being able to watch? Zero.
[NOTE FOR THE SAKE OF CLARITY: there is a difference in availability between TBS and FOX. But it'd be the same difference between ESPN and FOX, or any cable network and FOX. Last I checked, about 14% of households were without cable -- be they an aforementioned hipster weenis or the elderly or the thrifty or whatever -- and that actually is a fairly substantial block of viewers who can get FOX over the air, but not TBS.]