SBJ/20100419/This Week's News

Penguins bring home local TV title; Blackhawks enjoy jump

Despite playing in the country’s 22nd-largest market, the Pittsburgh Penguins drew more local viewers to their telecasts than any other NHL team.

Penguins games on FSN Pittsburgh finished the regular season as the highest rated and most viewed (8.05 rating/93,000 homes) in the league.

The defending Stanley Cup champions set the pace for a league that saw ratings increases for more than 60 percent of its U.S.-based teams. The brightest story was in Chicago, where viewership of Blackhawks games on Comcast SportsNet Chicago increased by an average of 49,000 homes a game over last year. This marked the second year that Blackhawks games were televised locally. The next biggest gain was in Pittsburgh, where Penguins viewership jumped by 19,000 homes.

Warm weather markets didn’t fare so well in attracting local viewers. NHL telecasts in Florida (Panthers on FS Florida and Lightning on Sun Sports), Georgia (Thrashers on SportSouth) and Arizona (Coyotes on FS Arizona) had the league’s lowest local viewership this season.

2009-10 NHL TEAM RSN RATINGS
Team RSN Avg. rating
(change from 2008-09)
Avg. no. of HHs
(change from 2008-09)
Anaheim Ducks Prime Ticket 0.42 (+50.0%) 24,000 (+50.0%)
Atlanta Thrashers SportSouth 0.33 (+26.9%) 8,000 (+33.3%)
Boston Bruins NESN 2.18 (-13.8%) 53,000 (-13.1%)
Buffalo Sabres MSG 6.45 (-19.0%) 41,000 (-18.0%)
Chicago Blackhawks CSN Chicago 2.45 (+131.1%) 86,000 (+132.4%)
Colorado Avalanche Altitude 1.56 (+13.0%) 24,000 (+14.3%)
Columbus Blue Jackets FS Ohio 1.39 (-25.3%) 13,000 (-23.5%)
Dallas Stars FS Southwest 0.74 (+27.6%) 19,000 (+35.7%)
Detroit Red Wings FS Detroit 4.21 (+5.3%) 80,000 (+3.9%)
Florida Panthers FS Florida 0.25 (+8.7%) 4,000 (0.0%)
Los Angeles Kings FS West 0.48 (+50.0%) 27,000 (+50.0%)
Minnesota Wild FS North 1.67 (-27.4%) 29,000 (-27.5%)
New Jersey Devils MSG+ 0.58 (+48.7%) 43,000 (+48.3%)
New York Islanders MSG+ 0.36 (+100.0%) 27,000 (+107.7%)
New York Rangers MSG 0.89 (-18.3%) 67,000 (-17.3%)
Philadelphia Flyers CSN Philadelphia 2.18 (-8.8%) 64,000 (-9.9%)
Phoenix Coyotes FS Arizona 0.62 (+55.0%) 12,000 (+71.4%)
Pittsburgh Penguins FSN Pittsburgh 8.05 (+26.2%) 93,000 (+25.7%)
San Jose Sharks CSN California 1.11 (-20.7%) 28,000 (-20.0%)
St. Louis Blues FS Midwest 2.33 (+21.4%) 29,000 (+20.8%)
Tampa Bay Lightning Sun Sports 0.6 (+27.7%) 11,000 (+22.2%)
Washington Capitals CSN Mid-Atlantic 1.6 (+46.8%) 37,000 (+48.0%)
Notes: Data is for games played through April 9 of this season and the comparable number of games played in 2008-09. Data for the Carolina Hurricanes, Nashville Predators and the league’s six Canadian franchises — Calgary, Edmonton, Montreal, Ottawa, Toronto and Vancouver — was not available.
Source: SportsBusiness Journal analysis of data from The Nielsen Co.
 
Top 5 Ratings   Bottom 5 Ratings
FSN Pittsburgh Penguins
8.05
FS West Kings
0.48
MSG Network Sabres
6.45
Prime Ticket Ducks
0.42
FS Detroit Red Wings
4.21
MSG Plus Islanders
0.36
CSN Chicago Blackhawks
2.45
SportSouth Thrashers
0.33
FS Midwest Blues
2.33
FS Florida Panthers
0.25
 
Top 5 Viewership (000s)   Bottom 5 Viewership (000s)
FSN Pittsburgh Penguins
93
FS Ohio Blue Jackets
13
CSN Chicago Blackhawks
86
FS Arizona Coyotes
12
FS Detroit Red Wings
80
Sun Sports Lightning
11
MSG Network Rangers
67
SportSouth Thrashers
8
CSN Philly Flyers
64
FS Florida Panthers
4
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