Redefining hockey's strong markets
The Bay Area's seasonal infatuation with the Sharks has returned, at least based on the local ratings from Tuesday's 5-3 win over Calgary. Comcast SportsNet Bay Area announced that its telecast of Game 7 drew a 4.6 average rating (approximately 111,000 households) and an 8.8 peak rating (212,000), the highest since Game 7 of the 2002 second-round series with Colorado that drew a 5.7.
Of course, a winner always brings in a bigger audience, and San Jose's had a good team for years. And hockey in California continues to rise in popularity, both in terms of people playing the game and watching it on television.
Here are the top 30 for this month:
|US Metro Area|
|5||San Francisco/Oakland/San Jose||4.82%|
Now this is obviously, in part, affected by the huge blog audiences in Washington and Pittsburgh,as well as those team's recent successes, but you can also see the traffic coming from places like the Bay Area, Los Angeles, Atlanta, Dallas and Raleigh/Durham.
The traffic to here is almost a 50/50 split between Canadians and Americans, and I'm always amazed at how diverse that U.S. audience is.
NHL markets not represented here: Miami and Tampa Bay, ranked 41st and 42nd. Kansas City is 59th, while Vegas is 54th.
If anything, based on internet traffic, there is more interest in Cleveland, Seattle or Hartford over a lot of the other relocation locales we've heard mentioned.
I present this more for interest's sake than anything. What would be more worthwhile would be to compare regional television ratings across the U.S., something that might be worth tackling in the off-season.