NHL notebook: Big-market teams drive ratings, ticket prices
New York Rangers fans, starving for a Stanley Cup title since Mark Messier and Mike Richter led the team to victory 20 years ago, will drive Stanley Cup television ratings and ticket prices to record levels, industry executives said.
The Rangers defeated the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday to advance to their first final since 1994.
They will face the winner of the Western Conference series between the Los Angeles Kings, the 2012 Stanley Cup winners, and the Chicago Blackhawks, who defeated Boston in last year's final.
The big-market finals matchup will be a boon for Comcast Corp.'s NBC, which in 2011 paid about $2 billion for the rights to broadcast NHL games through 2020-21, according to Brad Adgate, director of research at New York-based Horizon Media Inc.
“The fact that the Rangers are in the largest market, there's going to be a lot stronger appeal than other Eastern Conference teams,” Adgate said in a telephone interview. “Tampa Bay? Washington? I mean, Columbus? There's a really strong fan base in New York that has really come alive.”
Through the first 83 playoff games, the NHL has drawn an average of 1.12 million viewers, up 4.6 percent from last year, according to Horizon Media data.
The numbers still trail the NBA's playoff ratings, which are up 7 percent this year to an average of 4.5 million viewers per game from 4.2 million in 2013.
Jets center has surgery
Jets center Jim Slater underwent hip surgery and is expected back for training camp in September.
Injuries limited his playing time to 26 games in 2012-13 and 27 last season, when he was sidelined by a hernia.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- NHL notebook: St. Louis retires after 16-year career
- Beaver County daughter, terminally ill mom bond through Penguins hockey
- NHLnotebook: Islanders pick Chinese defenseman in draft
- NHL notebook: Kings terminate Richards’ contract
- Blackhawks deal Gibsonia native Saad to Blue Jackets
- NHL notebook: Red Wings sign former Caps defenseman Green