Ratings: All-Star Game Down, Skills Challenge Up


This year’s NHL All-Star Game held in Las Vegas took a ratings hit in its return to ABC, while the Skills Challenge scored its best numbers in years in its return to ESPN, according to Sports Media Watch.

Saturday’s NHL All-Star Game averaged a 0.6 rating and 1.15 million viewers on ABC, marking the smallest audience for the game since 2009 (1.09M) — falling below several editions that aired on NBCSN or VERSUS (2016: 1.60M; 2015: 1.19M; 2012: 1.32M; 2011: 1.48M). Ratings fell 38% and viewership 33% from the previous All-Star Game on NBC two years ago, which aired in primetime (1.0, 1.70M).

Skills Challenge

While the All-Star Game was a ratings bust, the previous night’s NHL Skills Challenge pulled a 0.6 and 1.09 million on ESPN — up 19% and 30% respectively from the previous edition on NBCSN two years ago (0.48, 835K) and the largest audience for the event in a decade (2012: 1.10M).

The Skills Challenge was ESPN’s most-watched program of the day, topping the heavily-delayed Sixers-Mavericks NBA game that followed (0.50, 793K).

NHL commissioner Gary Bettman announced last Friday that next year’s All-Star weekend will be held in Miami.

By Jon Sorensen

About Jon Sorensen

Jon has been a Caps fan since day one, attending his first game at the Capital Centre in 1974. His interest in the Caps has grown over the decades and included time as a season ticket holder. He has been a journalist covering the team for 10+ years, primarily focusing on analysis, analytics and prospect development.
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2 Responses to Ratings: All-Star Game Down, Skills Challenge Up

  1. steven says:

    Liked the 21 in 22 and the fountain shots but the anouncers were boring and it looked like the players didnt care. The hardest shot was ok and the breakaway challange was interesting. Miami next year….when will it be back in washington as it has now been 40 years since it was here.

  2. Anonymous says:

    Definitely liked the skills challenge event more than the game. I don’t think the money inspires teams to play much harder in the game.

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