Jay Leno ends 'Tonight Show' run with highest ratings since 1998

By Kyle Johnson,

Jay Leno's exit from The Tonight Show featured the best TV ratings for the late night show since 1998, with 14.637 million viewers.

The last time numbers were that high for Leno was when he had Jerry Seinfeld on right after the series finale of Seinfeld, reports Deadline. The numbers then were 14.962 million.

The Tonight Show pulled in a strong 3.8 rating in the advertiser important 18-49 demographic as Leno said his goodbyes.

This second goodbye is also stronger than his first in 2009, which only drew 11.9 million viewers.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the largest ever audience for Leno came in 1993 when Cheers ended, showing that farewell's draw in the audience. That episode pulled in an amazing 22.4 million.

Though the ratings are strong, they aren't as good in the demo as Conan O'Brien's were when he left the Tonight Show after his abbreviated run with Leno returning. O'Brien managed a more robust 4.4 in the demo.

image: NBC



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