2010 VMAs Nab MTV's Biggest Ratings Since 2002

Awards show was the third-most-watched telecast on MTV ever.

Sunday night's MTV Video Music Awards scored the biggest audience for any MTV telecast since 2002. The VMAs grabbed 11.4 million viewers and is the #1 cable telecast of 2010 for the network, followed by MTV's hit reality series "Jersey Shore," and the third-most-watched telecast on MTV ever.

There were plenty of must-watch moments at this year's awards show, and the buzz building days before the show about surprise performers likely contributed to the sizable turnout.

This year's show saw much-anticipated performances by Taylor Swift (who debuted a new song addressing last year's controversy with Kanye West) and West himself, who also debuted a new song that seemed to address his fall from pop-culture grace. The show also featured performances by rappers Eminem, Drake and Best New Artist winner Justin Bieber. Newcomer Nicki Minaj and Black Eyed Peas mastermind Will.I.Am performed together at the VMA pre-show.

Host Chelsea Handler opened up the show with a skit that featured Lindsay Lohan. In the pre-taped clip, the comedienne makes her way to the stage (and gets slapped on the butt a couple of times along the way). She meets up with the troubled actress, who pokes fun at her own struggles with sobriety before giving Handler a bit of advice: "Don't embarrass me."

"Every year, MTV celebrates the music and creative genius of artists we have the privilege of working with all year long," said Van Toffler, president of the MTV Networks Music & Logo Group. "Last night's luminescent VMA setting provided the perfect backdrop to do just that and we're thrilled the audience resoundingly agreed."

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The Moonmen have all been handed out and the stars have gone home, but there's plenty of 2010 MTV Video Music Awards news, interviews, behind-the-scenes scoop, party reports and more still to come, so keep it locked on MTVNews.com.