Bruins-Blackhawks Is Most-Watched Stanley Cup Final Game 1 In 16 Years
The Blackhawks' 4-3 triple OT win over the Bruins Wednesday in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final averaged 6.358 million viewers, making it the most-watched opening Final game since Red Wings-Flyers in '97. The viewership number is up 119% versus last year's Kings-Devils opener. Bruins-Blackhawks is the second-most watched Game 1 since Nielsen began its people-meter measurements in '87. Viewership for the game peaked in the first OT (11:15-11:30pm ET), with 7.444 million viewers. Game 1 was the No. 1 program of the day across both broadcast and cable among adults 18-49, men 18-49 and men 25-54. NBC was the top network in primetime for all key male demographics (THE DAILY). In Chicago, Ed Sherman noted Comcast SportsNet Chicago also "cashed in." Despite the "late hour, it did a 1.3 rating (nearly 50,000 homes) for its postgame coverage" (CHICAGOTRIBUNE.com, 6/13).
JUST WHAT THE DOCTOR ORDERED: In N.Y., Phil Mushnick notes through the third OT, NBC play-by-play announcer Mike Emrick "remained fresh, alert, engaging." With "play on, he even knew exactly what time it was, making quick mention that Wednesday night's game had just become Thursday morning's, in the East." He "updated the AHL finals, too." Meanwhile, it took until the Stanley Cup Final, but NBC has "fixed in-game analyst Ed Olczyk's microphone so we actually can hear him." And NBC during Game 1 went "light on needlessly distracting graphics, maximizing the live view" (N.Y. POST, 6/14).