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For the Nielsen overnight ratings, which is based on 32 major markets, the NHL on Fox received a 2.5 rating and a 6 share. NYR/PHI = Rangers/Flyers; SJS/ANA = Sharks/Ducks; CHI/DAL = Blackhawks/Stars; BOS/WAS = Bruins/Capitals; DET/SLB = Red Wings/Blues; and FLA/TBL = Panthers/Lightning.NHL CITIESPOSSIBLE EXPANSION CITIESMARKETRAT/
NYC3.1/ 7NYR/PHI Houston2.4/ 6CHI/DAL L.A.2.1/ 5SJS/ANA Atlanta.9/ 2NYR/PHI Chicago3.9/10CHI/DAL Minneap.1.5/ 4CHI/DAL Phila.4.5/ 9NYR/PHI Phoenix1.6/ 4NYR/PHI Boston5.1/13BOS/WAS Denver1.6/ 5NYR/PHI Wash.2.8/ 6BOS/WAS San Fran2.1/ 6SJS/ANA Dallas3.4/ 8CHI/DAL San Diego.6/ 2SJS/ANA Detroit6.0/13DET/SLB Milwaukee1.6/ 5NYR/PHI Tampa2.8/ 7FLA/TBL Portland.4/ 1NYR/PHI Miami1.4/ 3FLA/TBL Charlotte.8/ 2NYR/PHI St. Louis5.7/18DET/SLB San Anton1.2/ 3CHI/DAL Hartford.6/ 1BOS/WAS Sacramento2.4/ 6SJS/ANA
CBS' UCLA-Arkansas NCAA men's basketball final drew a 19.3 national rating -- down 11% from last year's Arkansas-Duke matchup. This year's rating is the lowest since Kansas-Oklahoma got an 18.8 in '88, and it comes despite an 84% boost in L.A. over last year. Overall, CBS finished with a 7.3 tournament rating -- down 12% from last year and the lowest overall since CBS expanded to 63-game coverage in '91. CBS college basketball producer Len DeLuca notes that without the two Michael Jordan NBA games, their ratings would only be down 8% (Michael Hiestand, USA TODAY, 4/5). More DeLuca: "The tourney dominated the night as it always does, drawing a 30-share to 18s for ABC and NBC. It also remained the dominant event in March." The UCLA-Arkansas was the largest rating for CBS on a Monday night since the '94 Winter Olympics (Jim Baker, BOSTON HERALD, 4/5).
Following the lead of the NBA, the NFL and its teams will have access to a range of national and local TV audience info under a new five-year deal with Nielsen Media Research. Nielsen's newly-formed Sports Marketing Service will provide the league and teams with customized audience information, mixing and matching data across all syndicated services (broadcast, cable, syndications, Hispanic service, cable systems and local stations). The league will also have access to custom reports on audience profiles, including: minute-by-minute analysis including halftime breakouts for key games; reach and frequency analysis by key demographics; ethnic viewing analysis; audience flow; comparative viewing analysis to other sports or programs; who's watching with whom. Robert Taragan, Exec VP of Marketing for Nielsen Media Research: "This agreement with the NFL reflects how Nielsen has literally restructured itself to deal with the unique needs of modern sports and entertainment organizations" (Nielsen). Nielsen Nielsen and the NBA announced a similar deal in March.
For the third time, Sports Illustrated will regionalize its cover, producing a special edition targeted to readers in New England, Upstate NY and portions of New York City that will feature the undefeated UConn Women's NCAA champion team. The magazine's national edition will feature Ed O'Bannon leading UCLA to its men's championship. SI's previous regionalized covers featured the Stanley Cup Champion Rangers and NBA Champion Rockets last season (SI). The magazine "chafed" women's basketball fans by omitting the women's tourney in last week's issue, while devoting 12 pages to the men's Final Four (TAMPA TRIBUNE, 4/5).
While today's N.Y. POST reports that TCI has not ruled out a bid to buy Time Warner's stake in TBS, which would allow TCI and Turner to pursue a network, USA TODAY reports that TBS Chair Ted Turner says there is "nothing going on" between TBS and CBS. TCI Chair John Malone told the N.Y. POST that any future talks between TCI and Time Warner are linked to "any success Turner has in buying a television network." But Malone described the Time Warner talks as "quiescent," adding: "We are at a quiet stage in which it is probably better if nothing is said." Malone's comments, according to the N.Y. POST's John Durie, "suggest Turner may have abandoned a bid for either" CBS or NBC at this point. (N.Y. POST, 4/5). Malone did hint that he could see investing in a network with former QVC Chair Barry Diller (David Lieberman, USA TODAY, 4/5). Both TCI's Malone and Microsoft's Bill Gates are interviewed in the current issue of BUSINESS WEEK. The Malone interview focuses on the Baby Bells' efforts to get into the video-on-demand business, while the Gates interview centers on the investigation into Microsoft's "aggressive tactics" (BUSINESS WEEK, 4/10).