Last week LIO reported the insanely low ratings for the opening game of the Stanley Cup Finals. Last week the victim was Versus, who brought in only 523,000 viewers for game 1. But now the NHL Finals are setting records, and not in a good way.
As predicted, ratings went up when the series shifted to NBC after game 2. But even being exposed to every single television household in the country didn't help the ratings that much. In fact, the NHL became NBC's newest version of "The Biggest Loser" on Saturday night. That night's game 3 brought in a 1.1 national rating, netting just over 1 million viewers. The rating was down 31% from last year's equivalent between Edmonton and Carolina.
Take a look at it in another context. NBC has been broadcasting television since 1938. It's been through highs and lows. And on Saturday, it hit rock bottom. The 1.1 game 3 rating equaled the lowest prime-time rating ever for a program on the network. Not just sports - any type of programming. The lowest. What did it tie with? A rerun of "The West Wing" in July 2005. Notice that both programs were in the graveyard of television - Saturday night.
To be fair, last night's game 4 did decline less sharply from last year's finals. Anaheim's 3-2 win netted a 1.9 rating, down from 2.0 last year. Even so, these embarrassing ratings are just another constant reminder of the NHL's fall from grace.