The 2014 NHL playoffs, which features a new playoff structure that puts an emphasis on early divisional matchups, has been very popular so far.
The first two days of the postseason featured seven games and the contests averaged 448,000 viewers on NBCSN/CNBC. That’s up 43% from 2013 when an average of 313,000 viewers per game (six contests total) tuned in to see the first two days of playoff action.
Not surprisingly, the St. Louis Blues’ 4-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks in triple-overtime was a big draw as 697,000 average viewers watched the game. It ranks second on the all-time list of NBCSN first round Game 1s, behind the opener of Philadelphia and Pittsburgh in 2012 (that game drew 844,000 viewers).
The contests have also been popular on NBC Sports Live Extra. Among authentication-required NHL games, the Blues-Blackhawks contest attracted a record 161,000 live starts.
WATCH LIVE: Detroit Red Wings at Boston Bruins (Game 1)
WATCH LIVE: Montreal Canadiens at Tampa Bay Lightning (Game 2)
When you’re talking about bright sides, most people believe that they boil down to the light at the end of the tunnel for the Philadelphia Flyers.
Sometimes it’s nice to enjoy a little success in the present while waiting for that bright future, though.
The Flyers are providing at least a burst of sunshine lately, as Tuesday’s 4-2 win against the Ottawa Senators gives them … (drum roll) their first three-game winning streak of this season.
Even in recent darker moments, Philly’s been pretty impressive on offense, so Flyers fans are likely relieved to see a relative offensive outburst.
Sure, it wasn’t all rainbows and unicorns – Radko Gudas might have gotten himself into some trouble, for instance – yet this is still a nice sign of life for a team expected to finish in the draft lottery.
If that fails … hey, the future may require shades.
Here’s an understatement: things haven’t gone very well for Dougie Hamilton early in his first season with the Calgary Flames.
(It must feel like the opposite of Tyler Seguin in Dallas for Boston Bruins fans, but feel free to disagree in the comments.)
You could look at Hamilton’s meager offensive stats and break down his disappointing work through a very of “fancy” and traditional metrics …
… Or you could just fire up a projector and show this own-goal on a loop.
It remains to be seen if the Ottawa Senators can avoid losing against the Philadelphia Flyers tonight, but either way, it’s been a costly night.
The Senators saw two forwards leave the game with injuries, as Milan Michalek and Mika Zibanejad were banged up on Tuesday.
Michalek may have gotten hurt blocking a shot while a Radko Gudas hit on Zibanejad left the Senators forward with an upper-body injury.
Gudas may get a call from the league for his infractions.
Update: Michalek’s issue could be significant.
The Flyers ended up beating the Senators 4-2, so a tough night for Ottawa.
In hockey terms, Patrick Kane was like a star basketball player left alone for an almost strange amount of time to score. Sometimes you miss that opportunity out of the sheer shock of getting that much time and space.
Devan Dubnyk wasn’t so lucky, however, as Kane beat him to score a 1-1 goal.
You can watch the whole sequence in the video above, including an absolutely fantastic play by Duncan Keith.
With that tally, Kane’s scoring streak is now at 20 games, leaving him one game behind Bobby Hull’s Chicago Blackhawks record.
PHT discusses Kane’s streak and his place among the all-time great runs in the clip below.