A home team rooting interest makes a difference.

Saturday’s Game One of the Stanley Cup finals between the Edmonton Oilers and the Florida Panthers drew close to 3.5 million viewers in overnight estimates across English Canada.

Most viewers watched the game, which Florida won 3-0, on Sportsnet (national and .com), where 1,928,000 viewers were tallied. CBC pulled an additional 1,230,000.

Rogers owned Citytv, picking up the ABC feed, contributed another 317,000 hockey fans Saturday night.

Disney has rights this year to the NHL final in the U.S. with all final games airing on ESPN+ and ABC. Saturday’s game drew 3.1 million American ABC viewers according to Nielsen, one of the least-watched Stanley Cup openers ever on a U.S. broadcast network — although it was up 12 per cent over the Panthers – Vegas Golden Knights tally one year ago on TNT/TBS/truTV.

A Canadian team in the finals generally knocks U.S. ratings into the boards.


TVAS carries the games in French Canada. Monday’s second game was also won by the home team, Florida, this time by a 4-1 score.

The remaining schedule is:

Game 3: Panthers at Oilers — June 13, 8 p.m. (ABC, ESPN+, SN, CBC, TVAS)
Game 4: Panthers at Oilers — June 15, 8 p.m. (ABC, ESPN+, SN, CBC, TVAS)
Game 5: Oilers at Panthers* — June 18, 8 p.m. (ABC, ESPN+, SN, CBC, TVAS)
Game 6: Panthers at Oilers* — June 21, 8 p.m. (ABC, ESPN+, SN, CBC, TVAS)
Game 7: Oilers at Panthers* — June 24, 8 p.m. (ABC, ESPN+, SN, CBC, TVAS)
* if necessary

1 Comment

  1. Game 2 surprise. With the NHL saying the North American (U.S. & Canada) average viewership was 6.8M and with the U.S. (ABC/ESPN+) average viewership being 3.558M, that means that more Americans than Canadians watched Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final.

    Do you have the Game 2 Canadian numbers for the exact breakdown?

Write A Comment