Rangers/Caps Triple OT Classic Draws 1.9 million

The first triple-overtime game of the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs drew big numbers on NBC Sports Network.

Game 3 between the Rangers and Capitals drew 1.85 million viewers last night on NBCSN, easily topping Game 2 of the series as the most watched game of the playoffs on cable. According to my numbers, Game 3 is the second most-watched non-Final game ever on NBCSN/VERSUS/OLN, save for Bruins/Lightning Game 7 last year. It beats out all other games from last year’s playoffs, and last year’s second round. This would make it the second most-watched non-Stanley Cup game since the lockout on cable.

Locally, the game scored record ratings in New York, where it drew a 3.99, highest for any NHL game ever on NBC Sports Network, VERSUS or OLN in the market. It was also up 93% from VERSUS’ exclusive broadcasts of the Rangers/Penguins series in 2008, the last time New York made it to the semifinals. In Washington DC, the game drew a 6.8, up 6% over the exclusive broadcasts from last year’s Lightning/Capitals semifinal series.

Top 10 Most-watched Games of the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs on Cable

1. NY Rangers vs. Washington, Game 3 (5/2/12, NBCSN): 1.85 million
Washington vs. NY Rangers, Game 2 (4/30/12, NBCSN): 1.53 million
3. Washington vs. Boston, Game 7 (4/25/12, NBCSN): 1.32 million
4. New Jersey vs. Philadelphia, Game 2 (5/1/12, NBCSN): 1.29 million
5. Philadelphia vs. Pittsburgh, Game 5 (4/20/12, NBCSN): 1.07 million
6. Pittsburgh vs. Philadelphia, Game 4 (4/18/12, NBCSN): 1.03 million
7. Ottawa vs. NY Rangers, Game 7 (4/26/12, NBCSN): 984,000
8. New Jersey vs. Florida, Game 7 (4/26/12, NBCSN): 867,000
9. NY Rangers vs. Ottawa, Game 6 (4/23/12, NBCSN): 861,000
10. Philadelphia vs. Pittsburgh, Game 1 (4/11/12, NBCSN): 847,000

(Source: TVBytheNumbers, NBC Sports)


Your Announcers and Open Thread for Night 23 of the 2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs

Philadelphia vs. New Jersey, Game 3, 7:30 p.m. ET

US National TV: NBC Sports Network
Play by Play: Kenny Albert
Inside the Glass: Pierre McGuire

Canada National TV: CBC
Play by Play: Bob Cole
Color: Gary Galley
Reporter: Scott Oake

St. Louis vs. Los Angeles, Game 3 (LA Leads 2-0), 10:00 p.m. ET

US National TV: NBC Sports Network
Play by Play: Dave Strader
Color: Brian Engblom
Inside the Glass: Brian Hayward

Canada National TV: TSN
Play by Play: Chris Cuthbert
inside the Glass: Ray Ferraro

ESPN Exec Doesn’t See Much of an Outcry for More Hockey Talk

From an interview with Vince Doria, SVP and Director of News at ESPN, with Ed Sherman of The Sherman Report:

It’s a sport that engenders a very passionate local following. If you’re a Blackhawks fan in Chicago, you’re a hardcore fan. But it doesn’t translate to television, and where it really doesn’t transfer much to is a national discussion, which is something that typifies what we do.

Baseball fans are interested where Albert Pujols is going. NBA fans are interested in the Miami Heat. For whatever reason, and this is my unsubstantiated research on it, hockey doesn’t generate that same kind of interest nationwide. You look at national talk shows. Hockey rarely is a topic. People in Boston aren’t that interested with what’s going on with the Blackhawks.

We’ll be out at the Stanley Cup. If you watch our show, we do highlights and report scores.

But if you go to our radio and television shows, there’s not a lot of hockey talk. It doesn’t seem like there’s a lot of yammer out there to give us hockey talk.