VERSUS announced the Washington Capitals vs. Philadelphia Flyers game Tuesday night drew its highest ratings since the NHL joined the network in 2005. The 0.6 edged the previous high which was opening night of this season when the Capitals vs. Boston Bruins got a 0.5. VERSUS says ratings are up 33 percent from last season. The high ratings come despite DirecTV no longer carrying VERSUS due to a contract dispute.
VERSUS deal includes 54 or more NHL games each season as well as coverage of Stanley Cup Playoff games. The network will carry games 2 and 3 of the Stanley Cup this season. In January of 2008, the NHL and VERSUS reached an extension of their contract to keep the NHL on VERSUS at least through 2011. This season, the network paid $72.5 million and will pay inflationary costs in the future.
See more on the ongoing battle between DirecTV and VERSUS see the following: