There were two pressing questions this weekend in regards to sports ratings. How would Hockey Night in Canada fare without the Leafs as the primary game and how big of a hit would TSN’s curling coverage take without Canada in the final. We now have an answer to both.
CBC Audience Research tells me the 7pm Eastern slot on Saturday night, led by Penguins @ Senators, had an average audience of over 2 million viewers (all numbers BBM 2+ overnights AMA). That’s impressive considering the Leafs were relegated to Ontario. The Leafs vs. Senators game last week, which went national, had an average audience of 2.1 million. Just over 2 million is about the average audience for the 7pm Eastern game this season. The last time CBC went with a 4 game regional split (on November 5), 2.04 million tuned in. The Leafs were the primary game that day. I know Crosby had a major effect on Saturday’s ratings, but maybe CBC will consider sending Leafs games to Ontario-only more often next season if the team is mediocre again.
The late game, between the Canucks and Avalanche from Pepsi Centre, had an average audience of just over a million viewers. That’s about par for the course for Canucks games on CBC.
In curling an average of 750, 000 watched the World Women’s final between Switzerland and Sweden. Not a bad number considering Canada wasn’t playing. Almost more impressive was that 406, 000 tuned in on TSN2 to watch the bronze medal game, which was played in the morning, between Canada and Korea. That’s a better number than TSN2 scored for the Brier 3rd place game. (thanks to Bob Weeks for posting these numbers)