According to Nielsen live-plus-same-day data, the six-game series between the Pittsburgh Penguins and San Jose Sharks averaged just 4 million viewers and a 2.3 household rating, making it the third lowest-rated Final since 2006. Deliveries were down 28% when compared to last year’s average (5.53 million viewers, 3.2 household rating), while the demo declined 22% to a 1.4 among adults 18-49.
NBC Sports Network draws its best cable regular-season viewership in 19 years, 392,000 total viewers per game, up 18%, after losing a third of the season to a labor dispute.
The much delayed start of the NHL season over protracted negotiations between players and the league scored for NBC. Saturday’s two-game regional coverage on the network (Chicago Blackhawks vs. Los Angeles Kings and Pittsburgh Penguins vs. Philadelphia Flyers) posted a 2.0 overnight rating from 3:30 to 6:15 p.m. ET. That was the highest overnight rating for regular-season coverage on any network in more than a decade.