The Los Angeles-Detroit NBA championship battle made the biggest inroad against series reruns in the nation's viewing preferences last week. A. C. Nielsen ratings released Tuesday showed that Game 4 and Game 5 ranked among the 10 most-watched prime-time programs for the week ending Sunday. The Game 6 cliffhanger on Sunday didn't show up because it didn't air in prime time. With the help of a repeat TV movie, "Intimate Strangers," which finished 7th, CBS eked out a win over its rival networks with an average rating of 11.8. NBC got an 11 and ABC an 8.7 (each rating point represents 886,000 households).
* ABC got burned on first-run programming when its 90-minute Billy Joel special failed to win its time period Wednesday. The documentary on the singer's Soviet tour was watched in about 8.3 million homes, while about 11.2 million were tuned to a rerun of the first two-hour episode of CBS' "Wiseguy."
Show Points Share 1. NBA Finals, Game 5 16.1 30 (CBS) (Rank: No. 4) 2. "Intimate Strangers" 15.0 28 (CBS Sunday Night Movie) (No. 7) 3. NBA Finals, Game 4 14.8 27 (CBS) (No. 9) 4. "Father's Homecoming" 12.4 23 (NBC Sunday Night Movie) (No. 21) 5. "Jaws III" 12.3 25 (CBS Friday Night Movie) (No. 22) * "A Matter of Trust: Billy Joel" 9.4 18 (ABC) (No. 37)