FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, August 12th, 2020
FIRST DAY OF 2020 STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS IS NBC SPORTS’ MOST-WATCHED FIRST DAY ON RECORD
Yesterday’s Two-Game Coverage on NBCSN Averages Total Audience Delivery (TAD) of 689,000 Viewers, Up 33% vs. First Day of 2019 Playoffs
Blue Jackets-Lightning 5 OT Thriller Peaks at 1.847 Million Viewers for Conclusion
Chicago-Vegas Late Game Up 23% vs. Comparable 2019 Game
STAMFORD, Conn. – Aug. 12, 2020 – On the strength of yesterday’s Columbus-Tampa Bay five-overtime thriller, the first day of the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs is NBC Sports’ most-watched first day of the playoffs on record, according to Nielsen and digital data from Adobe Analytics.
Yesterday’s NBCSN coverage of two First Round Game 1s averaged a Total Audience Delivery (TAD) of 689,000 viewers, surpassing all other Stanley Cup Playoff first days on record and up 33% vs. last year’s coverage of four games across NBCSN/USA Network (519,000 viewers). This is the first time the Stanley Cup Playoffs have started in August.
In the first game (3:00-9:25 p.m. ET), the Lightning defeated the Blue Jackets 3-2 in the second-longest game of the modern era. In the late game (10:36 p.m. – 1:13 a.m. ET), the Vegas Golden Knights defeated the Chicago Blackhawks 4-1.
Following are more viewership highlights from the first day of the 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs:
- The 5OT Columbus-Tampa Bay game, which began at 3 p.m. ET and concluded roughly 6.5 hours later, averaged a TAD of 755,000 viewers, making it NBC Sports’ third-most watched first-day game on record.
- For the overtime portion of the game from 5:45-9:25 p.m. ET, Columbus-Tampa Bay averaged 957,000 viewers and later peaked at 1.847 million viewers for its conclusion (9:15-9:25 p.m. ET).
- During the primetime portion of the game (7:30-9:25 p.m. ET), Columbus-Tampa Bay averaged 1.265 million TV-only viewers. By comparison, last year’s comparable Pittsburgh-New York Islanders First Round Game 1 — which went to overtime — averaged a TAD of 758,000 viewers from 7:29-10:48 p.m. ET.
- NBCSN ranked as the most-watched cable sports network during the game in total viewers and the key P18-49 and P25-54 demographics.
- In the late game, Chicago-Vegas averaged a TAD of 526,000 viewers, up 23% vs. last year’s comparable Vegas-San Jose First Round Game 1 (428,000 viewers).
- Digitally, yesterday was the most-streamed first day of a Stanley Cup Playoffs to date, with both games combining to average an Average Minute Audience (AMA) of 43,500 viewers, up 72% vs. 2019 (25,200 viewers).