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By Austin Karp, Research Associate
Ratings for the NHL on its national broadcast partners were up this regular season, as NBC and Versus both saw gains. NBC, which was buoyed by a 2.2 final Nielsen rating for the Amp Energy Winter Classic on New Year's Day, saw ratings for its 10 NHL telecasts average a 1.0, up slightly from a 0.9 for nine telecasts last year, and even with '05-06. Outside of the New Year's Day game, no NHL telecast on the net cracked a 1.0 rating. On Versus, the net averaged a 0.3 coverage area rating, up from a 0.2 for each of the two prior seasons. Versus also saw year-over-year gains in HHs (+20.3%) and viewers (+28.3%). The network saw its most-viewed regular-season game on March 31 for Rangers-Penguins, which drew 358,925 HHs and 527,985 viewers.'08 NHL ON NBCSEASONGMSAVG. RATING'08101.0'0790.9'0661.0'07-08 NHL ON VERSUSSEASONGMSCOVERAGE AREA RATINGHHsVIEWERS'07-08580.3192,675272,417'06-07560.2160,134212,366'05-06580.2116,852162,161
On the RSN side, 15 NHL teams saw increases in HH ratings from last season. FSN North saw the biggest gains among all RSNs, jumping 158.6% for its Wild telecasts, while the Blues also saw healthy gains, up 68.3% on FSN Midwest. CSN, which has the rights to four NHL teams, saw its average ratings jump 31% as three of its four teams made the playoffs. The Capitals and LW Alex Ovechkin led the way for CSN as the team jumped 75% in HH ratings on CSN Mid-Atlantic. The four teams on MSG and MSG Plus -- Rangers, Islanders, Sabres and Devils -- also saw an increase in ratings this season, with each of the franchises ranking in the top 10 among U.S. teams in ratings gains from last season. Nine teams saw RSN ratings declines this season. Despite last season's first playoff appearance for the Thrashers, the club saw the biggest decline, down 58.8%, as the team failed to reach the postseason this year. Despite qualifying for the playoffs, the Bruins, Avalanche, Predators and Stars all saw RSN declines. The following lists RSN ratings for each NHL team based in the U.S.'07-08 NHL RSN RATINGSTEAMRSNGMSAVG. HH RATING
'07-08AVG. HH RATING
'06-07% +/-WildFSN North452.871.11158.6%RangersMSG571.160.6287.1%IslandersMSG Plus620.230.1376.9%CapitalsCSN Mid-Atlantic750.700.4075.0%
Blues FSN Midwest402.071.2368.3% Sabres MSG748.505.1066.7% Panthers FSN Florida700.290.1952.6% Devils MSG Plus660.330.2343.5% Flyers CSN Philadelphia622.301.7035.3% Red Wings FSN Detroit704.743.5533.5% Hurricanes FSN South551.301.0030.0% Ducks FSN Prime Ticket650.310.2524.0% Blue Jackets FSN Ohio751.150.9521.1% Penguins FSN Pittsburgh705.995.2214.8% Sharks CSN Bay Area600.900.8012.5% Coyotes FSN Arizona400.310.32-3.1% Kings FSN West700.290.30-3.3% Bruins NESN741.501.60-6.3% Avalanche Altitude661.501.70-11.8% Blackhawks CSN Chicago480.600.80-25.0% Lightning Sun Sports690.650.89-27.0% Predators FSN South550.701.00-30.0% Stars FSN Southwest410.410.59-30.5% Thrashers SportSouth600.140.34-58.8%
NOTES: * = The Ducks had 41 telecasts on FSN Prime Ticket and 24 on FSN West, while the Kings had 61 telecasts on FSN West and 9 telecasts on FSN Prime Ticket. Ratings listed for each team is the combined rating for the two nets.