NBC Posts Viewership Milestones for CHAMPIONSHIP SATURDAY
NBC Sports' "Championship Saturday," featuring California Chrome's attempt at a Triple Crown in the 146th Belmont Stakes and Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final between the New York Rangers and Los Angeles Kings, registered viewership milestones, according to fast national data provided today by The Nielsen Company, and streaming records, according to Adobe Analytics.
California Chrome's run for history, which concluded in a dead-heat tie for fourth place as Tonalist won the race, averaged 20.6 million viewers - the second-highest Belmont Stakes viewership on record, trailing only the 21.9 million viewers for NBC's telecast of Smarty Jones' Triple Crown attempt in 2004 (People Meter viewership dates to 1988).
- The 2014 Belmont Stakes is the most-watched weekend sporting event since NBC's Primetime telecast of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics on Sunday, February 16 (21.3 million).
- The 2014 Belmont Stakes (6:23-7:15 p.m. ET) topped by 57% the average viewership for the last Belmont in which a Triple Crown was at stake (13.1 million on ABC in 2008 for Big Brown).
- NBC's Belmont Stakes registered a 12.0/27 household rating - a 46% increase over the 8.2/20 for ABC's Big Brown telecast in 2008, and ranking as the third-highest rated Belmont since Seattle Slew won the Triple Crown in 1977. NBC's telecast of Smarty Jones' bid in 2004 registered a 13.1/29, and CBS' coverage of Pleasant Colony's Triple Crown attempt in 1981 posted a 12.6/36.
- NBC's 4.0 rating among Adults 18-49 ranked as the highest in the demographic since the 2004 Belmont Stakes, and tied the 2003 Belmont as the second-highest in People Meter history.
- NBC's Belmont viewership and rating increased by 194% and 167% respectively over the 2013 race won by Palace Malice (7.0 million viewers and 4.5/11 HH rating).
- Locally, Belmont Stakes ratings increased in 53 of 56 metered markets vs. the last Triple Crown attempt in 2008, and were up in all 56 metered markets vs. the '13 telecast. The New York market, the home of the Belmont Stakes, registered a 15.8 rating/37 share which ranks as the second-highest ever in the market behind only Smarty Jones' attempt in 2004 (20.5/38).
- Fans live streamed 6,798,019 million minutes of the Belmont Stakes on NBC Sports Live Extra - the NBC Sports Group's live streaming product for desktops, mobile devices, and tablets - a record for any horse race streamed by NBC Sports Digital. Coverage included an isolation camera on California Chrome, bonus analysis from NBC Sports commentators, and replays and footage from the Kentucky Derby and Preakness Stakes. The Belmont Stakes was watched by 389,680 unique viewers.
NHL STANLEY CUP FINAL GAME 2 Last night's Game 2 (7:15-11:45 p.m. ET), in which the Los Angeles Kings defeated the New York Rangers 5-4 in double overtime to take a 2-0 series lead, averaged 6.4 million viewers, making it the most-watched Game 2 on record (since at least 1994). The game was up 60% vs. last year's Game 2 on NBCSN (Bruins-Blackhawks, 4.0 million), and up 121% vs. 2012's Game 2 on NBC that also featured the Kings (Kings-Devils, 2.9 million).
- Viewership for the game peaked in the final quarter-hour (11:30-11:45 p.m. ET) with 7.6 million viewers. The 7:15-7:30 pre-game quarter-hour, which immediately followed Belmont Stakes coverage, averaged 9.1 million viewers. The game delivered a 3.7 HH rating.
- Game 2 dominated primetime. NBC was No. 1 for the night among ABC, CBS, NBC and FOX in A18-49 (2.0) and all other key measures. Game 2 ranked No. 1 in A18-49 in all six Primetime half-hours, beat the other major broadcast networks combined in A18-49 rating (2.0 vs. 1.5).
- New York delivered a 10.5 HH rating for Game 2, the highest-rated NHL game ever on NBC or NBCSN in the market, and up from a 10.1 for Game 1, which was the previous record. Los Angeles scored a 8.9 HH rating, the second-highest such game ever in Los Angeles, behind only the 2012 Stanley Cup Final Game 6 (13.6), which was when the Kings clinched their first-ever championship. L.A. did a 7.1 HH rating for Game 1.
- Last night's Game 2, which ended in the second overtime, delivered 9.0 million minutes of live streaming on NBC Sports Live Extra, the most ever for an NHL game, according to Adobe Analytics. It surpassed last year's Stanley Cup Final triple-overtime Game 1, which produced 8.9 million minutes of consumption. Game 2 was watched by 219,677 unique viewers.
TOP METERED MARKETS FOR 2014 Belmont Stakes (Race Portion)
1 Louisville 21.1/38
T2. Ft. Myers 19.2/36
T2. Sacramento 19.2/39
T2. West Palm Beach 19.2/35
5 Baltimore 17.3/36
6 Tampa-St. Pete 16.8/32
7 Orlando 16.4/32
8 Buffalo 15.9/36
9 New York 15.8/37
T10. Boston 15.6/36
T10. Knoxville 15.6/30
TOP METERED MARKETS FOR Stanley Cup Final Game 2
1 New York 10.5/21
2 Los Angeles 8.9/21
3 Buffalo 8.1/17
4 Boston 6.9/14
5 Minneapolis 6.4/14
6 West Palm Beach 5.8/11
7 Providence 5.6/11
8 Pittsburgh 5.5/11
9 Las Vegas 5.3/10
T10. Chicago 4.9/10
T10. San Diego 4.9/12
T10. St. Louis 4.9/9