Stanley Cup Final: Game 1 Overnight Rating Best Since ’97

Posted by | June 13, 2013 at 11:03 AM

With two big market Original Six teams and a triple-overtime finish, Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final was unsurprisingly hit a multi-year high on NBC.

Game 1 of the Bruins/Blackhawks NHL Stanley Cup Final earned a 4.8 overnight rating on NBC Wednesday night, up 100% from Kings/Devils Game 1 last year (2.4), and up 50% from Bruins/Canucks Game 1 in 2011 (3.2).

The 4.8 is the highest overnight for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final since Red Wings/Flyers on FOX in 1997 (5.1), and the third-highest Game 1 overnight since the final returned to broadcast television in 1995. Only Panthers/Avalanche Game 1 in 1996 (5.2) and the aforementioned Red Wings/Flyers game earned better numbers.

Bruins/Blackhawks Game 1 was the highest rated Stanley Cup Final telecast in the metered markets since the Bruins’ most recent appearance — Game 7 against the Canucks in 2011 (5.7). Excluding series-clinchers, the 4.8 is the highest overnight for any Stanley Cup Final telecast since Stars/Devils Game 5 on ABC in 2000 (5.3).

Game 1 drew a 28.1 rating in Boston, up 10% from Bruins/Canucks Game 1 in 2011 (25.5). In Chicago, the game drew a 25.1 — up 49% from Flyers/Blackhawks Game 1 in 2010 (16.8). Buffalo was the top neutral market, with an 8.5.

Highest Overnight Ratings For Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final

Since the series returned to broadcast TV in 1995

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(Wednesday’s numbers from NBC Sports Group Press Box)