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).
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).
Friday night, #NHL fans tuned in as the #NHLAllStar Skills Competition returned to ESPN
The most-viewed & most-watched among P18-49 @NHL All-Star Skills Competition since 2012#NHLxESPN pic.twitter.com/cql8isSKTp
— ESPN PR (@ESPNPR) February 8, 2022
NHL commissioner Gary Bettman announced last Friday that next year’s All-Star weekend will be held in Miami.
By Jon Sorensen
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.
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.