Record TV Crowd Watched Short-Handed Flyers Get Smoked by the Bruins

Photo Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

NBC Sports Network is going away soon, which is ironic, because on Sunday the channel exceeded one million viewers for a hockey game, for the first time ever.

That was the 7-3 drubbing the Bruins put on the short-handed Flyers, which ended up being the most-watched NHL regular season game in NBCSN history.

Here’s a portion of the press release:

STAMFORD, Conn. – Feb. 24, 2021 – Amidst the spectacular and picturesque backdrop of Lake Tahoe, this weekend’s NHL Outdoors games produced numerous viewership milestones across NBC Sports, including the most-watched regular-season game in NBCSN’s 15-year history of televising NHL games for Sunday night’s Flyers-Bruins game. On Saturday, Golden Knights-Avalanche began in the afternoon on NBC but was delayed for hours due to sunshine making the ice unplayable, and ultimately finished after midnight on NBCSN.

Following are highlights:


-Despite a lopsided 7-3 Bruins victory over the Flyers, Sunday night’s game averaged a Total Audience Delivery (TAD) of 1.068 million viewers, making it the most-watched NHL regular season game ever on NBCSN, surpassing the previous record of 978,000 viewers set earlier this year on opening night for Penguins-Flyers (Jan. 13).

-With 1.019 million TV-only viewers, it was the first time that an NHL regular-season game exceeded 1.0 million viewers on NBCSN. Flyers-Bruins is also the most-watched NHL regular-season game on cable in 19 years, since Sharks-Red Wings in 2002 (ESPN; 1.278 million).

-Sunday night’s contest is now the most-streamed NHL regular-season game in NBC Sports Digital history in both Average Minute Audience (49,700 viewers) and live minutes (7.8 million).

-Locally, Boston delivered a 6.69 household rating for the game, making it the market’s best delivery for an NHL regular-season game on NBCSN since the 2014-15 season opener (Phi-Bos; 10/8/14; 7.80 HH rating). Philadelphia scored a 4.07 local HH rating.

That’s quality, especially considering Saturday’s ice debacle and the fact that the Vegas/Colorado game had to be delayed and finished at night.

Whatever challenges the league faced in pulling this off – and plenty of people found it to be an L for them – it didn’t affect viewership. People were intrigued and tuned in to watch the fucking annoying Bruins beat the brakes off our guys. But don’t worry, we’ll get healthy and smack Boston around in the playoffs. David Pastrnak won’t be dancing around in those goofy-ass glasses singing “Barbie Girl” after the Flyers drop his team like a sack of potatoes.