Versus Skates Ahead With Conference Finals Ratings Gains


rVersus continues to score with its Stanley Cup playoffs coverage.

The Comcast-owned network skated to a 1.6 cable rating and averaged 1.72 million viewers for its May 19 telecast of the second game of the Chicago Blackhawks-Detroit Red Wings Eastern Conference finals series, according to Nielsen Media Research data. The network netted a 15.5 local rating in Detroit, beating the final performance episode of Fox's American Idol by 26% in the Motown DMA.
Through its first two conference games, including the first game of the Carolina Hurricanes-Pittsburgh Penguins series on May 18, Versus averaged a 1.5 rating and 1.69 million viewers, gains of 36% (from a 1.1) and 58% (from 1.07 million), compared to the first two conference finals games in 2008.
For its coverage through the two games mentioned above, Versus' playoff telecasts hace scored a 37% increase in viewership and a 40% rise in ratings.
Network officials said the second round of the playoffs was the highest-rated on cable since 1997.