Stanley Cup Finals TV Ratings: Game 1 Ratings Down 25 Percent Despite OT Finish

NEWARK, NJ - MAY 30: Anze Kopitar #11 of the Los Angeles Kings shoots the game winning goal in overtime against Dainius Zubrus #8 and Martin Brodeur #30 of the New Jersey Devils during Game One of the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Final at the Prudential Center on May 30, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

An overtime in Game 1 of the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals was not enough to drive ratings near last year's levels.

An overtime in Game 1 of the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals was not enough to drive ratings near last year's levels.

NBC drew a 2.4/4 overnight for Game 1 between the Los Angeles Kings and New Jersey Devils, according to an NBC Sports spokesman. That was down 25 percent from last year's opening game between Boston and Vancouver, which drew a 3.2. It marked the lowest number for Game 1 since it returned to broadcast television in 2009. Before that, Game 1 had aired on cable from 2000 to 2009.

Initial viewership numbers will be available in a few hours, and the final numbers toward the end of the day. This isn't exactly a terrific start for this series, but as you'll see, Pittsburgh/Detroit started slow a few years ago, and that series ended up okay. The Devils making this a series will be key to it's success, or else we could be back toward 2004/2006/2007-type lows. For now, though, keep hope alive.

Game 1 Overnights on Network TV

  • 2012, Los Angeles vs. New Jersey (NBC): 2.4
  • 2011, Boston vs. Vancouver (NBC): 3.2
  • 2010, Philadelphia vs. Chicago (NBC): 2.8
  • 2009, Pittsburgh vs. Detroit (NBC): 2.5
  • 1999, Buffalo vs. Dallas (FOX): 3.7
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