TAMPA, FL – JUNE 03: Antoine Vermette #80 of the Chicago Blackhawks celebrates his third period goal with teammates against the Tampa Bay Lightning during Game One of the 2015 NHL Stanley Cup Final at Amalie Arena on June 3, 2015 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images)

NBC has to pleased about the start of the NHL Stanley Cup Final. Last night’s Game 1 between Chicago and Tampa Bay pulled a 4.23 overnight rating, which is the 2nd highest Game 1 overnight on NBC since 2013’s Boston-Chicago series which set the standard for the network.

By comparison, last year’s Game 1 between the New York Rangers and the Los Angeles Kings garnered a 3.8 overnight rating and that pitted the top two markets in the country.

Locally, Chicago which has paced the NHL Postseason ratings for NBC/NBCSN was once again the top-rated market in the nation for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final.

And from Comcast SportsNet Chicago, the numbers get even more staggering:

As for the Tampa-St. Pete market, Game 1 also fared well:

While this is a preliminary rating, the final number should surpass the 2.8 prediction which the extremely bitter Nate Silver projected at the ESPN FiveThirtyEight microsite.

The record for a Game 1 overnight record is the 1997 Detroit-Philadelphia series which generated a 5.2 for Fox.

NBC and the NHL have to pleased over the start for this series. With American Pharoah running for the Triple Crown in the Belmont Stakes as a lead-in for Game 2 on Saturday, the Peacock should see some very good numbers for the the NHL at least going into the contest. We’ll see if the series can build on Game 1’s momentum or will fall back as the games continue into next week.



About Ken Fang

Ken has been covering the sports media in earnest at his own site, Fang's Bites since May 2007 and at Awful Announcing since March 2013.

He provides a unique perspective having been an award-winning radio news reporter in Providence and having worked in local television.

Fang celebrates the four Boston Red Sox World Championships in the 21st Century, but continues to be a long-suffering Cleveland Browns fan.

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