Monthly Archives: January 2012

Bob Cole Is Being Driven Nuts By Sens French PBP Guy

Those of us with NHL Center Ice and DirecTV are being treated to something pretty unique tonight. DirecTV is relying on a wild feed for the Montreal Canadiens/Ottawa Senators matchup. That feed allows the viewer to listen in to the broadcasters during commercials, etc. Normally, DirecTV inserts their own ads on wild feeds since over the air ads aren’t shown on them. Its pretty rare for wild feeds to be shown on Center Ice and its even rarer for a CBC one to show up.

For whatever reason, for the first 35 minutes of tonight’s telecast, DirecTV allowed the whole thing to go over the air. The first gem of the night came when Bob Cole and Garry Galley first sat down in the booth. After Galley asked Cole how he was doing, Bob responded with a rather sad sounding “I’ve had better nights.” Galley then tried to make him positive, telling him the game hadn’t even started yet. Cole was clearly in a sour mood as he later uttered this –

Yes, that’s Hockey Night in Canada legend Bob Cole complaining about a fellow broadcaster. And it would appear that his beef is with Nicholas St.-Pierre. St-Pierre calls Sens games with Alain Sanscartier on CKOI. Sadly, right after Cole’s comment, DirecTV started inserting some ads during the TV timeouts. At least we got to hear this as its now a crapshoot as to whether we get to eavesdrop or not. It was fun while it lasted.

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Posted by on January 15, 2012 in CBC, NHL, Radio, Television


Regional Ratings Update

Yesterday, I had the depressing news of Sabres TV ratings dropping like a rock. So for today, here’s some positive news.

First up, we have the San Jose Sharks. The Sharks have put some strong numbers this year and last Thursday was no exception. From Sharks Play by Play man Randy Hahn

The Columbus vs. Sharks game last night was the highest rated Regular Season Sharks game (2.22) in the history of CSNCA and peaked at 2.88!

Hard to believe that a game against the Jackets would draw big but it did. One caveat is that the game is the highest ever on Comcast SportsNet California. The Sharks have spent more of their time on CSN Bay Area, moving to CSNCA a couple of years ago. Regardless. that’s still a pretty impressive feat for them.

Next up, we have a report on the Winter Classic Alumni ratings on CSN Philadelphia. From the Delaware Co. Daily Times –

A lot of people apparently delayed getting ready for New Year’s Eve because outdoor ice hockey drew a huge audience for Comcast SportsNet the afternoon of Dec. 31.

CSN topped all Philadelphia television stations in audience during its airing of the alumni game that preceded the Jan. 2 Winter Classic. The 6.2 rating of the game also meant high ratings figures for CSN’s pre- and post-game shows with respective counts of 2.3 and 3.7. The pre- and post-games rating show the difference in viewership when those shows sandwich a game. The same shows on Jan. 2, when the Winter Classic was seen locally on Channel 10, scored an 0.9 rating, good but not as noteworthy as the Dec. 31 numbers.

A 6.2 destroys what most teams get for games on a regular basis. Very impressive numbers, continuing to prove the Flyers popularity in Philly.

Finally, here’s a couple of ratings stories out of Boston. a href=’’>First up, there’s a chart showing the Top 20 regular season Bruins broadcasts in NESN history through 2011. 16 of those games are from the past two months. But 2012 is breaking more records for NESN. From NESN –

NESN, New England’s most watched sports network, set another regular season Boston Bruins ratings record on Saturday afternoon with an 8.9 average household rating in the Boston DMA (341,088 total in-home viewers) for the Bruins’ Stanley Cup rematch with the Vancouver Canucks. NESN’s previous best household rating for a regular season Bruins game was set on Nov. 23, 2011 when NESN garnered an 8.4 HH rating for the Bruins’ 4-3 shootout win at Buffalo.
The Vancouver game earned an astounding 23 share in the Boston DMA, also setting a new NESN record for a regular season Bruins game. Share is the percentage of all households with a television in use that are watching a program. This means nearly one in four homes with a TV set on was watching the Bruins game on NESN. The network’s previous record share was a 16 for the Bruins 6-0 win over the Philadelphia Flyers on Dec. 17, 2011.
Just as impressive as NESN’s household rating on Saturday was the game’s ratings among key demographic categories. NESN earned an 8.0 rating (33 share) for adults ages 25-54 and 11.1 rating (40 share) for men ages 25-54.
NESN’s current season Bruins average is now up to a 5.2 household rating, up 86 percent over last season after the same number of games (34).

The Bruins just keep tearing it up. You have to wonder how big the ratings would’ve been for that game in primetime but its a moot point. The game was a lead in for NESN’s Hockey Day in New England and it surely helped boost the two college games that aired afterwards.


Sabres Ratings Plummet Without TWC

As expected, the Buffalo Sabres are taking a big hit since MSG was pulled from Time Warner Cable. From The Buffalo News

The dispute between Time Warner and Madison Square Garden network, the New York City-based regional sports carrier with the exclusive rights to Sabres telecasts, plummeted the Sabres’ stratospheric television rating from an average season 8.3 share down to 3.2 for Tuesday’s 4-3 victory over Edmonton at First Niagara Center.

In other words, nearly two-thirds of the TVs tuned into Sabres hockey — the NHL’s leading American television market — before the New Year are now darkened by MSG’s Jan. 1 removal from Time Warner.

In addition to the on-air sponsorships and commercials, the loss of air time is reducing dasher board and on-ice exposures, meaning sponsors and the Sabres are watching money and opportunities to reach a captivated audience circle the drain. The Sabres are particularly affected by the local advertising because the team, not MSG or Time Warner, sells and benefits from that advertising.

The Sabres have been doing some viewing parties to help the fans out but that’s little consolation to them. And as the story mentions, this really hurts the Sabres bottom line as they control all advertising of the games. The only thing MSG really does is help produce it and supply a cable channel. While much of the focus has been on the NYC area, nobody will feel the effects of this more than Buffalo.

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Posted by on January 9, 2012 in Buffalo Sabres, MSG, NHL, Ratings, Television


Ratings Update

I haven’t posted much when it comes to weekly ratings lately so I’m past due.

These Canadian BBM Ratings are sourced from The Remote Control Blog.


TSN WJC Pregame 905,000
TSN Finland/Canada 2,210,000


Sportsnet Ontario Toronto @ Florida 813,000


TSN WJC Pregame 812,000
TSN Czech Republic/Canada 2,484,000
TSN Vancouver @ San Jose 931,000


TSN WJC Pregame 883,000
TSN Denmark/Canada 1,829,000


TSN USA/Czech Republic 684,000


CBC Winter Classic Alumni 416,000
CBC Regional 7 PM (Tor/Wpg, Mtl/Fla) 1,595,000
CBC Vancouver @ Los Angeles 760,000
TSN WJC Pregame 831,000
TSN USA/Canada 2,718,000


The Voice of TV has a complete recap of Versus ratings from November 28-December 14. The high for that period was Philadelphia/Buffalo (585k, 12/7) while the low was San Jose/Colorado (193k, 12/13).

Puck The Media has some numbers courtesy of TVSportsratings on Twitter. The debut NBC Sports Network game featuring San Jose @ Vancouver drew a respectable 267,000. Considering that it went up against the Fiesta Bowl and featured a Canadian club, that’s not too bad. It was also a season high for a game that featured the Sharks. Other games from earlier drew similar numbers. Dallas/St. Louis (270k, 12/26) and NY Rangers/Washington (327k, 12/28) had to be slight disappointments since both games were exclusive telecasts.


CBC Draws Just Over 1 Mil For Winter Classic

From CBC/Canadian Press –

The CBC drew a modest 1.13 million viewers for Monday’s NHL Winter Classic that saw the New York Rangers defeat the Philadelphia Flyers 3-2.

The league’s marque regular-season game, usually played on Jan. 1, was pushed back a day this year and had its start time delayed by two hours due to weather conditions.

Last year’s Winter Classic drew an audience of 1.9 million viewers on CBC, but the game between the Capitals and Penguins was moved to prime time because of bad weather in Pittsburgh.

By comparison, CBC combined to attract 2.38 million viewers for three simultaneous games played Dec. 17 between Vancouver and Toronto, New Jersey and Montreal, and Anaheim and Winnipeg.

A doubleheader that featured the Canucks visiting Ottawa and Detroit hosting the Jets drew a combined 1.59 million viewers on Dec. 10.

Game 7 of last season’s Stanley Cup final between Boston and Vancouver drew an average audience of 8.76 million and a peak of 11.2 million on CBC. The introduction of a new ratings measurement system in 2009 has seen sports TV ratings skyrocket.

One thing to note is that last year’s game was part of regional coverage on CBC as the game’s telecast was truncated. Toronto/Ottawa were shown in Ontario, while the telecast was cut short in Alberta to show Edmonton/Calgary.

A better comparison is to look at how the WC did the last few times it aired in the afternoon.

2008 Pittsburgh/Buffalo 1,170,000
2009 Chicago/Detroit 930,000
2010 Philadelphia/Boston 1,616,000
2012 Philadelphia/NY Rangers 1,130,000

Overall, not too bad. A slight decline but it still beats 2009. Of course, there was also some overlap with WJC coverage over on TSN. That might impact the numbers. These CBC ratings are pretty much on par with what many of the late games draw on Hockey Night in Canada.

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Posted by on January 5, 2012 in CBC, NHL, Ratings, Television


WJC Keeps Drawing In Viewers

Canada might have had a disappointing World Junior Hockey Championship semifinal performance but TSN can consider the tournament a success, at least leading up to that game. The tourney is averaging 2.4 million viewers, through the New Year’s Eve matchup against the United States. That game has a high of the tourney, drawing in 2.8 million viewers. From TSN –

The Canada-United States New Year’s Eve game capped off an overwhelmingly successful preliminary round. Over Team Canada’s four preliminary round games, TSN has averaged 2.4 million viewers.

• Dec. 26: Canada vs. Finland – 2.3 million viewers
• Dec. 28: Canada vs. Czech Republic – 2.55 million viewers
• Dec. 29: Canada vs. Denmark – 2.0 million viewers
• Dec. 31: Canada vs. United States – 2.8 million viewers

All four games ranked as the most-watched program of the day on Canadian television in all key demographics.

Online, registered 190,000 live streams of Team Canada games while TSN’s brand-new TSN Check-In app on Facebook – giving fans the ability to “check in” from around the world and show that they are cheering on Team Canada – has now gained more than 34,000 registered users, with fans checking in across Canada and from around the world.

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Posted by on January 4, 2012 in Ratings, Television, TSN


NBC Winter Classic Ratings Down

As expected, the Winter Classic on NBC saw a drop in viewership. From John Ourand of SportsBusiness Daily –

SBD: NBC’s Winter Classic overnight is a 2.4, down from last year’s 2.8 (in primetime on New Year’s Day) and ’10’s 2.6 on New Year’s Day.

The local ratings –

One more Winter Classic ratings tidbit: the game pulled an 11.9 overnight in Philly; and a 4.3 overnight in New York

To add to these numbers, the inaugural game had a 2.6, while the ’09 edition had a 2.9. Why are these numbers not a surprise?

  1. The time change helped confuse viewers. I’m sure the diehards showed up but some casual viewers might’ve gone elsewhere and never came back.
  2. The game aired on a Monday afternoon. While many people had the day off, just as many were at work unlike on an actual holiday. That was reflected in college football’s ratings as well.
  3. This game didn’t air in primetime. That certainly boosted the numbers last year even though there were plenty of NHL games airing against it regionally.
  4. There was some stiff competition including a college football overtime thriller on ABC. That game featured Michigan State, which meant that a key NHL market was likely going back and forth between events.
  5. This game lacked buzz. I just didn’t feel the buzz as I did prior games. It wouldn’t surprise me if others felt the same way. Yes, I was interested, but it just didn’t captivate me, especially after the Sid/Ovie hype of last year or the Original 6 battle in 2009. Perhaps it was the rather boring venue as Fenway Park, Wrigley bring cache, Citizens Bank Park doesn’t.

While the NHL has to be a little disappointed in these numbers, these are still very good ratings for any hockey game. Looking at the bigger picture, that’s a positive. Here’s the total viewership via Darren Rovell –

3.74 million watch 2012 Winter Classic, up 2% vs last afternoon game (2010). Is the 5th most watched regular season NHL game since ’75

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Posted by on January 3, 2012 in NBC, NHL, Ratings, Television