It’s the Chicago Blackhawks, who are looking to win their second championship in the last four years. They’ll face another “Original Six” foe in the Boston Bruins, who are looking for their second Stanley Cup in three years.
Both teams face off Wednesday, with game one scheduled here in Chicago at 7 p.m. NBC has rights to games one, and four through seven, while NBC Sports Network (NBC SN) has rights to games two and three. In Canada, all games are airing on CBC and Rèseau de Sports (RDS), the French-language equivalent of TSN in Quebec.
The series is expected to be a ratings bonanza for NBC, whose parent (Comcast) has benefited from the Hawks all season, thanks to their record winning start to the season with record ratings for Comcast SportsNet and NBC SN.
Saturday night’s Western Conference Final game five between the Blackhawks and the defending champion Los Angeles Kings (where the Hawks won in an OT thriller, sending them to the Cup Final) drew locally a 19.6 rating/37 share in households, translating to nearly 700,000 homes tuning in. Nationally, the game drew a 2.9 overnight rating for NBC, and a 1.1 preliminary rating among adults 18-49 (this measurement did not cover overtime; final ratings won’t be released until Tuesday.)
In Los Angeles, the game only did a 3.8 overnight household rating.
But despite the good ratings news, it seems both the game of hockey and Chicago in particular have a long way to go in obtaining respect from the biased national press. Early Sunday morning, ESPN sports business guru Darren Rovell – who used to work for CNBC (whose parent company also owns rival NBC SN), send out a tweet stating 4 out of 5 people in the Chicagoland area did not watch the Blackhawks on TV [Saturday] night.
In the world of measuring who watches television or listening to radio, anyone with a brain can tell you this is NOT how ratings are interpreted. You measure how many people are watching or listening to a program – not how many are NOT watching or listening. His logic would’ve worked in an era of only three TV stations, but certainly not applicable in today’s era of media fragmentation.
Since The Worldwide Leader In BS is biased against Chicago teams and hockey so much (take a look at how far ESPN 1000 is behind WSCR/The Score in the sports radio ratings race), this doesn’t come as a surprise. Since Rovell loves spinning things so much, maybe he should work for Fox. Maybe he can tweet if The Cleveland Show is still not “not canceled”.
Darren Rovell. He reports. You decide.