The Masters earned its best opening-round rating since 2010, according to Nielsen Media.
In a press release issued Friday, ESPN said its Thursday telecast earned the highest rating since the network’s record-setting 2010 broadcast, which featured Tiger Woods' return to the course after his sex scandal and registered a 3.4 rating and an average of 4.936 million viewers. Thursday’s telecast earned a 2.2 rating and averaged 3.218 million viewers, a year after the first Woods-less Masters since 1994 produced a 1.5 rating and average audience of barely more than 2 million.
Columbus, Ohio, and West Palm Beach, Florida, led the nation with 4.2 ratings.
A major difference also came online, as WatchESPN reached a record 234,000 unique viewers Thursday, which was up 263 percent from 2014.