NESN set a regular-season ratings record for Saturday’s Canucks-Bruins game with an 8.9 local rating in Boston. The net’s previous best regular-season rating was set on Nov. 23 with an 8.4 rating for a Bruins-Sabres game (NESN). Rogers Sportsnet also had its biggest audience ever for the same Canucks-Bruins game, with an average of 746,900 viewers. This was a 20% increase over the previous high of 624,900 viewers, which was set in Oct. ’09 against the Stars (Sportsnet).
RELIABLE SOURCES? Baseball writer Murray Chass wrote about MLB.com and how their coverage is a system he has “a problem with.” The website “serves a purpose, even for baseball writers, for whom it can serve as a 30-team research site in one location and a source of comprehensive statistics.” But then there are the “self-congratulatory articles that can induce nausea.” Chass: “I guess we don’t have to read them, but they are there as propaganda for fans to see and be taken in by.” Not that MLB.com “would acknowledge it, but [MLB Commissioner Bud] Selig was a common denominator in the labor strife that produced five strikes and three lockouts and preceded two decades of peace.” MLB.com “doesn’t post columns that deal with this nasty stuff,” as it has “only praise for the commissioner.” But Chass wrote, “I am not suggesting that Selig doesn’t deserve praise for his and baseball’s accomplishments in his 19 years as commissioner” (MURRAYCHASS.com, 1/8).
VIVA LA UNIVISION: MULTICHANNEL NEWS’ Mike Reynolds noted Univision has “signed its first affiliate deal for its trio of telenovela, sports and news channels, as part of [a] far-reaching distribution pact with Dish Network.” Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed, but it calls for Dish “to launch Univision Deportes, Univision telenovelas and Univision Noticias.” The provider “will also offer exclusive access to Deportes Dos, a second sports network.” The rollouts will occur “during the first half of the year” (MULTICHANNEL.com, 1/9).
LEAVING THE PRINT WORLD: Denver Post sports columnist Dave Krieger “is leaving the newspaper to join KOA-850 AM radio full time, as co-host of the Dave Logan afternoon talk show.” Krieger joined the paper in March ‘09 following the closure of the Rocky Mountain News. His last column in the Post will be Jan. 19 (DENVERPOST.com, 1/6).
EXPECTING A BIG WEEK: Vox Media chairman Jim Bankoff last night said he is expecting company record traffic this week, thanks to a content confluence of CES-related coverage for the company's technology site, The Verge, and spikes in consumer interest for SB Nation centered around the BCS National Championship game, Baseball HOF voting and NFL Playoffs. The company hosted a CES party in Las Vegas last night, with bartenders wearing Verge and SB Nation-themed shirts reading "the unholy alliance between jocks and nerds" (Eric Fisher, SportsBusiness Journal).