Game 3 Of Western Final Hits Series Low

While the Western Conference Final did solid business on NBC Sunday, the VERSUS broadcast of Game 3 on Friday night did middling business.

Game 3 of the series between Vancouver and San Jose drew an 0.5 rating and just 714,000 viewers for VERSUS on Friday in the 9 p.m. ET slot. This was the lowest of the series, posting a 16% drop from Game 2 (847,000 viewers on 5/18), and a 38% drop from Game 1 (1,009,000 viewers on 5/15). To date, the series has averaged 856,000 viewers for VERSUS, well below the Eastern Conference Final’s 1.5 million three-game average. Game 4 drew a 1.3 rating (viewership currently unknown) on VERSUS.

Friday, May 20

8:30 p.m. Hockey Central – 115,000 viewers
9:00 p.m. Vancouver vs. San Jose, Game 3 – 714,000 viewers
11:30 p.m. Hockey Central – 284,000 viewers

VERSUS Conference Final numbers

Western Conference (San Jose vs. Vancouver)
Game 1 (5/15/11):
1,009,000 viewers
Game 2 (5/18/11): 847,000 viewers
Game 3 (5/20/11): 714,000 viewers
Average: 856,000 viewers

Eastern Conference (Tampa Bay vs. Boston)
Game 1:
1,540,000 viewers
Game 2: 1,562,000 viewers
Game 3: 1,405,000 viewers
Average:
1,502,000 viewers

(Source: Son of the Bronx)

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About stevelepore
Steve Lepore is the Managing Editor of Puck the Media. His work has been featured in The Hockey News. Feel free to contact him at stevemlepore@gmail.com

22 Responses to Game 3 Of Western Final Hits Series Low

  1. kevin says:

    No one likes Vancouver….face it 40 years of losing has not built them any fanbase outside of British Columbia…plus the games start too late for Eastern fans to bother to watch the entire game

    • Kevin says:

      No one likes Vancouver? They’re a Canadian team so why would anyone in the U.S like them? Only Canadian team with U.S reach is the Canadiens (and maybe the Leafs).. But in B.C they have crazy amount of fans.. Only 4.4 million people in B.C and they averaged 600k viewers during the regular season (That shits on most teams and not just only NHL but for most sports).. Look at it this way, in NYC, a place with double the population, less then 400k watch each Yankees game (Baseball sucks but it’s a good example)..

      It’s not the Canucks that’s the problem, it’s the Sharks. Canucks are a Canadian team, obviously they’ll have no fans in the U.S but the Sharks need to draw in more viewers.. They’re drawing over 2.5 million viewers in B.C for the Canucks games in the playoffs. More then half the province’s population..

    • leafsfan1967 says:

      Much could be said about this inane observation but the main thing that needs to be said is that the problem is not about Vancouver. The real problem is that the NHL has insisted in trying to develop non hockey markets in the the States rather than growing the game where it is known loved and appreciated.

      Real hockey fans will watch the final regardless of who is playing…

  2. kevin says:

    NHL needs to realign the teams. Go back to 4 divisions that mean something and make one all Canadian teams. That would be good for Canadian TV and you could keep them off of American TV easily….

  3. kevin says:

    If the Canucks didn’t sux for the last 40 years they might have a following in the US. Montreal certainly does…and don’t tell me about Vancouver local ratings. They have ONE sport…big frickin’ deal…what else are they going to watch???? NYC has about 10 major league sports teams

    • Chris S says:

      They have CFL and MLS teams which have huge followings. Do some research before you do your typical Canada bashing here.

    • Kevin says:

      Nothing you type on here makes sense.. You ramble on and most of it is bullshit.. Maybe you’re ignorant, have no knowledge of what you’re saying? I’m not really sure what it is…

    • marv935 says:

      One of the reason Montreal has a better following in the USA is because NBC/Versus has been showcasing some of their games- notably matchups with MTL vs. Bruins, Flyers, Rangers in regular season and so more viewers are familiar with the Canadiens and their rich history in the game.
      Vancouver Canucks- despite being front runners for almost the whole season- were never showcased on NBC/Versus in the regular season and having the late night TV starts for being in the Pacific time zone does not help. So, the consequence of the Canucks not being showcased in the regular season is that the casual viewer has no idea who they are with no following in the USA.

      • Jeremy says:

        The reason the Canadiens have a good following in the US is because of a long-standing winning tradition – decade after decade after decade – and not because of 3 or 4 NBC telecasts in the past few years.

  4. Edward Ganatsios says:

    Marv excellent point you’ve got there. Now somebody is making sense.

  5. kevin says:

    Nobody “showcases” Montreal…they are popular because they actually won something in people’s lifetime….As for CFL and MLS….CFL plays about 6 games and it ended in October. MLS is a minor league sport. My god Canada suxs at soccer. They make the US look like Brazil. Nobody cares about soccer in North America other than illegals living here

    • Ryan says:

      ….CFL has a longer schedule than the NFL, and Canadian teams IN THE MLS do well with support even if the national team doesn’t. Canada doesn’t have a problem with illegal immigrants and lots of people care about soccer. It’s obvious you don’t know what you’re talking about, but more worrying is that you’re clearly being daft on purpose and I still care enough to respond

  6. nosferatu says:

    When it comes to the low ratings and the Sharks’ involvement, I have to wonder if the NHL and its TV partners really set themselves up for this. I understand the issues with them being a West Coast team, and their past postseason disappointments, but for several years now they’ve been one of the most talented (star-studded) squads out there. Why not put them on TV more? Versus or NBC?

    We always talk about “growing the game.” The league has failed to make ANY teams from the Pacific or Northwest divisions marketable or noticeable in any way on the national scale. They’ve been playing with fire, and now it’s come back to bite them in the ass.

    It didn’t have to be this bad. Not to say the ratings would be great for this matchup if they’d given more attention to San Jose and Vancouver over the past few years, but it’s clear that they would be better.

    • Kevin says:

      I don’t know.. Sharks local TV Ratings were down 27% during the reg-season.. One of the worst declines in the league.. They’ve been better during the playoffs but fans need to step up..

    • KevinS says:

      You are right on. Great comment. NBC/Vs doesn’t promote or grow the game outside of their safe markets. People will watch when you put it on and promote it.

      • Ryan says:

        I keep seeing this line of reasoning and I have to disagree with it. You never see New Jersey or St. Louis on national TV really, but when they were good, you did. Washington and Chicago are on all the time now, but when they were bad, they weren’t.

        NBC wants to show games between good teams – yes Tampa didn’t get a lot of exposure nationally this year, but a lot of people didn’t expect them to even make the playoffs, so why would they have gotten national exposure when the TV schedule was gone up?

        Given that NBC’s limited in their timeslots, the only way they should really be showing west coast games is if they’re playing in Detroit or Chicago (or St. Louis or Nashville, Dallas, etc., if those teams are expected to do really well that year). It’s not as simple as “show San Jose more” – they’re not going to change their coverage time to suit SJ home games, and fans and players will complain if there are morning local starts, so what can be done really?

      • nosferatu says:

        Ryan,

        With Tampa your argument is correct. But how will it play out next season? Will we see them even once on NBC, even if they win the Cup?

        And yes, the time-of-game issue is a real one for NBC and Pacific Time Zone teams, but it’s already been discussed ad nauseum as to how the 12:30 ET start time is lousy. Unless there’s a golf tournament to work around, or some other event, 3 ET start times would be great during the regular season. And then you can get San Jose on TV. They’ve certainly been deserving of it for years. And you can get L.A. on–before much of the country is like, “What? When did they get good??”

  7. Ryan says:

    nosferatu,

    If I knew the answer to that I’d be looking for somebody to let me make a bet! I like to think that Tampa will get a few NBC games next year no matter what (against Washington or other strong opposition) because they’re legitimately a good team who I’d expect to see in the playoff picture the next few years – not like Carolina or Anaheim the years they won the Cup (or Tampa last time for that matter) where they came out of nowhere. If that doesn’t happen, and we’re back here next year with Tampa in the ECF and pulling in no ratings because they got no national exposure, I’ll gladly eat my words. :)

  8. kevin says:

    Canada doesn’t have a problem with illegals because you wave them in knowing they are going to the US as soon as they get Canadian citizenship…The CFL is down to about 5 teams…..its hardly that popular

    • Ryan says:

      “down to about 5 teams” – it’s actually at nine teams (with a 10th coming in a couple years and an 11th maybe after that), and nine is the number it’s been at for pretty much its entire history except for the mid-90s attempt to expand to the US.

      “hardly that popular” – the Grey Cup drew an average of over 6 million viewers in both 2009 and 2010, making it the most-watched TV show in the country in 2009 and behind only Olympic events in 2010.

      • Ryan says:

        And before you point it out – which would in no way validate anything you’ve been saying, btw – those numbers should be eight, nine, and 10 teams.

    • leafsfan1967 says:

      Kevin I don’t know where you get the idea that Canada “waves” illegals on to the US. Maybe the same source who claimed the 9/11 terrorists entered the States through Canada which turned out to be a lie.

      Maybe we should all stick to hockey here….

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