About a year ago, SportsBusiness Journal reported that the Chicago Blackhawks local TV ratings were up 72.6 percent from the previous year. In 2008-’09, the Blackhawks averaged a 1.07 rating. So far this season, they have already set NHL viewing records on Comcast SportsNet Chicago. December 9, the Blackhawks overtime victory against the New York Rangers drew a 3.03, setting the record. December 23, they broke it again posting a 3.27 in a 3-0 victory against the Boston Bruins.
Comcast SportsNet isn’t the only place the Blackhawks are setting records. WGN-TV announced Dec. 21 that Chicago’s 3-0 victory against the Detroit Red Wings brought in a 4.1 household rating, surpassing their previous 3.3 high. WGN reported its ratings are up 47 percent overall from last season and up 111 percent in adults 25-54.
If you are wondering, the top local TV rating last season was the Buffalo Sabres, blowing away the rest of the league with an 8.87. The next highest was the Penguins with a 6.14. This season, two teams who scored in the 2’s in ratings in 2008-’09 will be facing off in the Winter Classic. Last season the Winter Classic drew 4.4 million viewers, making it the most-viewed NHL regular season game in history.
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Matthew Coller is a staff member of the Business of Sports Network, and is a freelance writer. He can be followed on Twitter
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