Your TV Guide and Open Thread For Night 22 of the 2009 Stanley Cup Playoffs

This will appear every night to inform you of the TV networks and announcers that will be covering the games during the playoffs.  Enjoy all the local and national info, after the jump.

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Game 2 of Pens/Caps Highest Rated 2nd Round Game in 7 Years

NEW YORK, N.Y. (May 7, 2009)-VERSUS, the exclusive cable television home of the NHL, garnered a 1.2 National HH rating and averaged 1,206,855 total viewers for its Pittsburgh Penguins/Washington Capitals Game 2 Conference Semifinal telecast on Monday, May 4.  Washington’s 4-3 win over Pittsburgh, in which NHL superstars Sidney Crosby and Alexander Ovechkin each scored a hat trick, was VERSUS’ highest-rated and most-watched Conference Semifinal round game ever and was the highest-rated and most-watched second round game on cable since 2002.   

Locally, the game received a 16.1 HH rating in Pittsburgh, making VERSUS the #1 network in the market during the game and a 5.3 HH rating in Washington D.C. making VERSUS the top cable network in the market during the time period. 

VERSUS entered the 2009 postseason with double-digit viewership growth for the 2008/09 regular season as compared to the 2007/08 campaign.  Building off of the growth of the network’s best regular season ever, VERSUS is continuing the momentum by garnering its best postseason ever so far.  Through 32 total postseason games, compared to the 2008 postseason to date, the network has seen HH ratings growth of 25 percent, total viewership increase 18 percent and dramatic viewership growth for the key male demos (Men 18-49 – up 16% and Men 25-54 – up 27%).  

Game 4 of the Penguins/Capitals series will air live on VERSUS Friday, May 8, at 7 p.m. ET. 

Ducks/Red Wings Triple-OT Thriller Even with Last Year

We finally got this news in.  As per the trusty NBC Sports spokesman Brian Walker, NBC’s telecast of the Ducks/Red Wings Game 2 drew a 1.3 overnight rating, even with last year’s 1.3 for NY Rangers/Pittsburgh Game 2.  This comes after NBC drew a 1.4 for Penguins/Capitals on Saturday.

Overall, NBC has averaged 1.64 Million viewers through six playoff telecasts this year, up 30% from 2008’s 1.26 Million viewers.  The NHL On NBC returns Sunday, May 17th with a Conference Final telecast.

Your Mid-Day YouTube Compulsory: Jarome Iginla Gets an Assist… On FOX!

To the Electronic Soapbox!: Why the Coyotes Need to Go Anywhere But Southern Ontario

On the list of things we really don’t care about: The Coyotes situation.  Please.  Let the Canadian media deal with it, we say.  They’re the ones who have truly destroyed the perception of this team out of their own sense of schaudenfraude to get a team back to Canada.  Which we’re pretty much for.  Except for the one detail: They want a second team in Southern Ontario, and a third team in Ontario overall.  Because the Islanders and Devils have such a good thing going, right?

We’re not denying that this franchise needs a change.  The Phoenix experiment hasn’t worked, and while it’s partially due to the climate, it’s almost certainly due to terrible ownership and management, which have seen this team go without a playoff appearance since 2002.  It also has to do with the arena being in an atrocious location, worse than the Meadowlands as far as getting there.

But Southern Ontario?  When all the writers get over the fact that OMFG!  ANOTHER CANADIAN TEAM FOR US TO OVERANALYZE AND ENSURE NO MARQUEE FREE AGENT WILL EVER COME HERE ENSURING A LONG AND VICIOUS CYCLE THAT WILL EVENTUALLY FRUSTRATE CUSTOMERS, all that will be left is a junior version of the Senators, and no one can tell me that the Sens are a marquee franchise.  They typically draw the worst at the gate of all six Canadian teams, have the lowest local TV ratings, and are overall just a meh franchise.  This potential Hamilton team would be even worse off.

Why not Winnipeg?  Why not Saskatoon? Sure, it’s only a 15,000-seat arena, but who cares?  Besides Gary Bettman?  No one!  There are fans there!  There were fans in Phoenix before they moved from America West – and that was considered a bad place for hockey – and look where they are now!  A team in midwestern or western Canada would have it’s own identity, have a ton of local territory, and be something the league could be proud of.

Go where the fans are, boys.