Wednesday night’s game, which saw the Blackhawks defeat the Flyers 4-3 on a goal by Patrick Kane 4:06 into overtime to give Chicago its first Stanley Cup since 1961 and end the NHL’s longest championship drought, was watched by 8.28 million viewers, the most since 1974 (8.29 million viewers, Boston-Philadelphia, Game 3 on NBC). That's 43 percent more than last year’s Game 6 (5.8 million) and 4 percent higher than last year’s Game 7 (8.0 million).
Game 6 posted a national household rating of 4.7 and an 8 share, making it the highest-rated NHL game in 36 years (7.6/27, Boston-Philadelphia, Game 6, 1974 on NBC), 38 percent higher than last year’s Game 6 (3.4/6) and 9 percent higher than last year’s Game 7 (4.3/8).
Game 6 peaked at a 6.2/11 from 11-11:20 p.m. ET when Kane scored the game-winner and the Blackhawks celebrated their victory.
NBC televised Games 1 and 2 and Games 5 and 6. Those four games averaged 6.1 million viewers, the best network-TV series average in 13 years (6.4 million, Detroit-Philadelphia, one game on Fox in 1997). Viewership was up 9 percent from last year (5.6 million viewers).
The average-series rating was a 3.4/6, the best on network TV in eight years (2002, 3.6/7, Carolina-Detroit on ABC) and up 10 percent vs. 2009 (3.1/6).
Chicago averaged a 25.2/41 rating for the four games shown on NBC; Philadelphia averaged a 19.6/30.
TOP 10 MARKETS FOR GAME 6
TOP NON-NHL MARKETS FOR GAME 6
The NHL's digital platforms also continued their tremendous playoff growth during the Final.
Video starts on NHL.com finished up 161 percent over last year for the entire playoffs, while unique visitors to NHL.com were up 17 percent, page views were up 56 percent and mobile page views were up 181 percent. For the Stanley Cup Final, page views were up 88 percent and video starts 225 percent.