As a Bruins’ fan, I am going to go out on a limb and make an argument on behalf of most of Bruins Nation. That argument is that we as a whole can’t stand NBC’s coverage of the Stanley Cup Final. We were all incensed about the shameless bias brought forth by the NBC commentators. The ‘color commentary’ was colorful alright, especially about anything and everything Sidney Crosby.
(Don’t even get me started how they compared Daniel Paille’s hit to Sidney Crosby as being an equal tragedy as Gregory Campbell playing on the ice with a broken leg.)
We as fans hate to grate our teeth every time we heard ‘Za-day-no Chair-a” , grimace through each “Mi-lan Loo-chich” and just swear at the TV when they announced “Todd March-and”. Seriously, I think we all flared our anger and frustration over social media about the bias and ignorance displayed by the NBC staff.
Well, it looks like we’re going to have to put up with for a while longer. Wednesday night’s triple-overtime game had the most viewers for a game one Cup Final in sixteen years. NBC had 6.35 million viewers. (The last time the numbers were that high was Detroit/Philadelphia back in ’97.)
It’s a massive uptake from last year. Compared to last year’s New Jersey/Los Angeles final, the ratings are up 119%. They averaged 3 million viewers during the first three rounds of the post season (up 38% from last year), and averaged 1.19 million during the regular season (up 7%). NBC is enjoying the ratings upswing, and will bargain hard to be the winners of future television rights in upcoming seasons.
I can almost live with the bias. I’d rather have ESPN and Jack Edwards and Andy Brinkley offer their opinions to a national audience. (At least with their bias, they are professionals. They would chew out an under performing player or team.) I would just like NBC to get their names right. It’s not too much to ask for, being the Stanley Cup Finals and all.