Hungry for hockey: Blackhawks set regular-season ratings record for home opener

Hey, maybe the NHL should consider more lockouts in the future. It could be their best marketing tool yet.

All the work stoppage did was make fans hungrier for hockey. For further evidence, look at the ratings in Chicago Tuesday night for the Blackhawks home opener against St. Louis.

Comcast SportsNet Chicago pulled its highest rating ever for a regular-season game. In fact, it shattered the record by more than a full ratings point.

Keep in mind, this is for a team that is coming off back-to-back first round losses in the playoffs. And it was for Game No. 3, not a key late-season showdown.

The Blackhawks rating comes on the heels of NBC pulling in huge ratings during the NHL’s opening weekend.

Who knew the lockout would be good for hockey?

Anyway, here are the details of Blackhawks rating from CSN Chicago:

Comcast SportsNet, the television home for the most games and most comprehensive coverage of the Chicago Blackhawks, delivered its highest Blackhawks regular season rating ever last evening (January 22) — a 5.40 household rating for its live coverage of the Blackhawks home opener against the division rival St. Louis Blues. 

For last night’s thrilling 3-2 victory by the Blackhawks, Comcast SportsNet attracted approx. 188,179 households for the entire game and posted a 6.28 “peak” rating during the 10:00 PM quarter-hour (218,845 households).  The 5.40 single game regular season ratings record on Comcast SportsNet shatters the previous record set on March 5, 2010 vs. Vancouver (4.35).  Source for all ratings information is provided by Nielsen Media Research overnights.

Comcast SportsNet was also the #1-highest rated television network in the Chicago market last night in all key advertising demos — including Adults 25-54 — for the entire length of the game (7:30-10:15 PM).  The network was also #1 in the market for six-straight hours (5:30-11:30 PM) in the following demo categories: Men 18-34, Men 18-49, Men 25-54 and Adults 18-34.

In addition, via data obtained through’s social media hub “Blackhawks Pulse,” last night’s Blackhawks-Blues match-up garnered a solid 38,400 game-related tweets, highlighting the growing movement of in-game social media engagement with fans.

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