TV Ratings: NHL Stadium Games Hit Highs, But New York Rivalry Dwarfs Los Angeles
NBC and NBC Sports reap the benefits of buzzy outdoor showdowns, but the Rangers-Devils Yankee Stadium matchup blows the Kings-Ducks game out of the water.
It was a big weekend for the NHL, with two high-profile hockey games taking their rinks outside. The Rangers and the Devils played at Yankee Stadium, after the Kings and the Ducks had a West Coast showdown at Dodger Stadium -- and it was the former that raked in the highest ratings.
Sunday's afternoon Rangers-Devils game averaged 2.079 million viewers and a 1.33 rating among households. That's the most watched and highest-rated regular-season hockey game in NBC history. The game saw a whopping 5.1 rating in the New York market, a best for NBC.
An equally hyped outdoor game between the Kings and the Ducks did not have a broadcast network partner, airing on NBC Sports at a later hour, though the game still marked a regular season record for the L.A. market with a 2.38 rating. Saturday's game, a shutout with no goals for the Kings, averaged 622,000 viewers and a 0.35 rating.
Those numbers might seem lackluster compared to the game in the Bronx, but they're still up 139 percent from recent late-night NHL telecasts.