Game 4 of the 2022 Stanley Cup Final proved a win for the Colorado Avalanche and ABC on Wednesday night.
A goal by Avalanche center Nazem Kadri in OT of the matchup with reigning champs the Tampa Bay Lightning put Colorado one victory away from claiming its first Stanley Cup since 2001. All that drama on the ice in Tampa’s Amalie Arena last night also saw the Disney- owned network win the night in primetime among adults 18-49 and overall audience in early numbers.
The Avalanche’s 3-2 victory 0.9 rating in the key demo and 3.6 million viewers in the 8-11 pm time period, according to Nielsen.
Tied with the 8 pm broadcast of The Price Is Right At Night on CBS for total sets of eyeballs, Game 4 is up just more than 11% in viewers from the early results for June 20’s Game 3. That 6-2 win by the Lightning went on to rise to around 4.1 million viewers and a 1.2 rating in the final data.
Looking back at the 2021 Stanley Cup, ABC is seeing stratospheric leaps over NBC’s coverage last year. Only the second Game 3 of a Stanley Cup to be shown on a broadcast network in over a decade and a half, the final numbers for Game 3 of the 2022 NHL showdown was up a whooping 65% in total audience and an amazing 83% in the ratings.
Played on July 2 last year, the 2021 Game 3 saw then-defending champs the Lightning school the Montreal Canadiens 6-3 in the Quebec metropolis. Angling for a four-game sweep, the Lightning were stymied by the Canadians in Game 4 on July 5 in Montreal. That battle pulled in 2.92 million viewers for the Comcast-owned net. The whole thing was over on July 7, when Tampa beat Montreal 1-0 to claim the Cup. In a very East Coast-centric finals, that 2021 Game 5 was seen by 3.51 million viewers and had a demo rating of 1.9.
Elsewhere in primetime, the CW’s second-to-last episode of The Flash‘s eighth season sped things up a bit. With an two- month audience best, the superhero series drew nearly 620,000 viewers. In terms of the 18-49 crowd, Flash again garnered a 0.1 rating
NBC was all repeats Wednesday, while Fox’s MasterChef (0.4, 2.2M4) and So You Think You Can Dance (0.3, 1.51M) were down a touch in the audience, but the same as last week among the 18-49s.
After a night of strong game-show performances both new and repeat, second place overall CBS ‘encore of One Last Time: An Evening with Tony Bennett and Lady Gaga special probably suffered up against the hockey competition with 1.65 million viewers and a 0.2 rating.
Colorado and Tampa Bay meet for Game 5 on Friday on ABC in what could be the end of this year’s Stanley Cup. In the meantime, take a look at our chart below for an overview of last night’s puck-heavy primetime: