Game 7 of the Stanley Cup final between Vancouver and Boston was a ratings smash for the CBC.
An average audience of 8.76 million Canadians tuned in to watch the Bruins beat the Canucks 4-0 on Wednesday night, making it the most-watched NHL broadcast in the public broadcaster’s history.
The overnight ratings were just behind the network record from 2002, when 8.96 million Canadians watched the Olympic men’s hockey final between Canada and the United States in Salt Lake City.
The Bruins-Canucks game peaked at 11.2 million viewers in the second period. The network said the game reached a total of 18.45 million Canadians, which counts for more than half the country’s population.
The introduction of a new measuring system in September 2009 has seen sports TV ratings skyrocket in Canada.
The game was also a ratings hit south of the border, where it earned the highest television rating for an NHL game in 37 years.
The game had a 4.8 rating and 8 share on NBC. That’s the best since a 7.6/27 for Boston-Philadelphia in 1974.
It was up two per cent from last year’s deciding Game 6 between Chicago and Philadelphia and up 12 per cent from the most recent Game 7 in 2009 between Detroit and Pittsburgh.
The seven games averaged 4.6 million viewers on NBC and Versus, the most for a series split between network and cable involving a Canadian team.
The game earned a 43.4/64 in Boston, the best for a hockey game since records began being kept for the market in 1991. That’s higher than any game in the Celtics’ last two NBA finals.
Shares represent the percentage of all homes with televisions in use at the time, and overnight ratings measure the country’s largest markets.
With files from The Associated Press.