NBC Sports Network kicked off its coverage of the 2013-14 NHL season with a bang on Tuesday, as its broadcast of Chicago-Washington set a cable record for the most-watched season opener.
According to the NBC Sports Group, the game — a 6-4 ‘Hawks victory — was watched by an average of 935,000 viewers, peaking at 1.045 million, while scoring a 7.3 rating in the Chicago area.
Those numbers helped set a modern cable record, based on data available since 1993.
The game had plenty to offer: 10 total goals, star power (reigning Conn Smythe winner Patrick Kane and Hart Trophy winner Alex Ovechkin) and the ceremonial banner raising and championship ceremony, honoring the Blachkawks’ 2013 Stanley Cup victory over Boston.
Other marks set by last night’s contest:
— Second-most watched regular season game in NBCSN history.
— Over 942,000 minutes viewed digitally via NBC Sports Live Extra.
— Ratings up seven percent compared to the 2011-12 season opener between Philly and Boston, the last time the season began in October.