Rick Ross is on his way to his third No. 1 album on the Billboard 200 as "Deeper Than Rap" looks like it will debut atop the list this week. Industry prognosticators project the Slip-N-Slide/Def Jam album will sell over 150,000 copies in its first week.
Ross' last set, 2008's "Trilla," bowed at No. 1 with 198,000 while 2006's "Port of Miami" also did the same, but with 187,000.
This week's second-highest debut will either come from Asher Roth's freshman effort "Asleep in the Bread Aisle" (SchoolBoy/Loud/SRC/Universal Motown) with perhaps over 70,000 in its first week or Depeche Mode's "Sounds of the Universe" (Mute/Virgin/Capitol), which is aiming for anywhere between 75,000 to 90,000.
Ross' "Deeper Than Rap" also leads the Nielsen SoundScan Building chart that was released on April 22, which reflected unweighted sales through the close of business on Tuesday, April 21.
Billboard estimates the seven merchants who report to Nielsen SoundScan's Building chart -- Trans World Entertainment, Best Buy, iTunes, Starbucks, Borders, Target and Anderson Merchandisers -- comprise about 60% of all U.S. album sales.
Nielsen SoundScan's sales tracking week, as reflected in the official Billboard 200 chart, runs from Monday through Sunday of each week. The newest Billboard 200 chart, released on April 22 -- where the "Hannah Montana: the Movie" soundtrack climbed to No. 1 with 133,000 -- reflected the week that ended on Sunday, April 19.
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