During his acceptance speech at the 2011 Tony Awards, John Benjamin Hickey joked that his mother had better be watching him and not the Dallas Mavericks. Presenter Chris Rock jokingly groused about missing the NBA final in which Dallas took the championship over the Miami Heat. In the end, overall ratings for the 2011 Tony telecast were down slightly, with 6.9 million viewers tuning in, compared to 7.0 million in 2010.
The good news: There was an uptick in viewership of adults 18-49, according to statistics released by Tony Awards Productions: The telecast, hosted by Neil Patrick Harris, was up 9% in that age bracket, even in adults 25-54 and up 2% in households compared to last year, when it also competed against the NBA. The Tonys ranked second in households (4.5/07), viewers (6.92 million) and adults 25-54 (1.6/04) and tied for second in adults 18-49 (1.2/03, with NBC).