UNSUPPORTED BROWSER
NHL

NBCSN sets ratings record for Wings-'Hawks Game 7

Photo: Bill Smith/Getty Images

Over 3.4 million viewers tuned in to watch Patrick Sharp and the Blackhawks top the Red Wings in Game 7.

The NBC Sports Network set a record.

It might not stand for very long.

The cable channel had a 2.07 national rating, its highest for an NHL broadcast, with 3,354,000 viewers tuning in to watch Chicago beat Detroit 2-1 in overtime of Game 7 Wednesday night.

Its previous record in seven-plus years of carrying NHL games was a 1.97 rating set on June 2, 2010, when Chicago played Philadelphia in the Stanley Cup finals.

"We live by numbers every day and what this tells us is that the NHL is on a roll in this country," NBC Sports president of programing Jon Miller said Thursday. "While the lockout was unfortunate, we're seeing that hockey has some impressive momentum. We're really excited and encouraged by the continued growth in interest of the game and how people are finding the games on the NBC Sports Network.

"Now, we're poised for what should be great conference finals."

The numbers could potentially be even better in June with major markets and big-time teams, which have won the last four Stanley Cups, still playing.

Chicago will host the defending champion Los Angeles Kings in Game 1 of the Western Conference finals on Saturday night on NBC after Pittsburgh plays Boston at home in the Eastern Conference finals opener on NBC Sports Network.

The last Red Wings-Blackhawks postseason game as Western Conference teams - Detroit is headed East next season - was the most-watched conference semifinals game on cable since at least 1994 and highest-rated, non-Stanley Cup finals game on cable since a Detroit-Colorado conference finals game on May 29, 2002, drew a 2.09 rating.

Miller said the high-paced, hard-hitting game is drawing new fans each night.

"There is nothing in sports that equates to playoff hockey," he said. "I think hockey players care more about their playoffs than any other sport and you can see that in the way they leave it all out there every game. I've never seen anything like it."

More NHL

Close

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Just follow these 4 easy steps:

  1. Click the Chrome menu on the browser toolbar.
  2. Select Bookmarks.
  3. Select Bookmark manager.
  4. Locate your current Sports Illustrated bookmark, click the Organize menu, then select Edit. You can now easily update the web address of your Sports Illustrated bookmark.

    Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Just follow these 2 easy steps:

  1. Click the Safari bookmark manager on the browser toolbar.
  2. This will open the Bookmarks Bar. In the Bookmarks Bar, select your Sports Illustrated bookmark and manually edit the Address field.

    Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.

To continue enjoying content from the most trusted name is sports, please be sure to update your current bookmark.

Just follow these 3 easy steps:

  1. Click the Firefox bookmark manager on the browser toolbar.
  2. Select Show All Bookmarks.
  3. This will open the library window. In the Library window, select your Sports Illustrated bookmark and manually edit the Location field.

    Our updated web address is http://www.si.com.
Don't Show This Again