The NHL kicked off its $ 1 billion deal with ESPN and Turner Sports – here’s how many people watched the season’s opening gigs.

Pittsburgh Penguins center Evan Rodriguez (9) takes a break, while Tampa Bay Lightning goalkeeper Andrey Vasilevsky (88) saves his net during an NHL hockey match between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Pittsburgh Penguins on October 12, 2021 of the year at the Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida. …

Andrew Bershaw | Sportswire Icon | Getty Images

The National Hockey League kicked off the 2021–2022 season on Tuesday. It’s also the first year of his $ 1 billion media rights package with ESPN and Turner Sports.

The network reported that the NHL average 884,000 ESPN’s two-head broadcast on Tuesday, while Turner attracted around 669,500 viewers to its national slot on Wednesdays. Both are above the NHL average for the first two seasons.

In ESPN’s first game, the Pittsburgh Penguins beat defending Stanley Cup champion Tampa Bay Lightning 6-2. over a million viewers.

The Disney-owned network added that in October 2001, the 2021 competition took the lead in its most recent top-rated NHL opening between the Penguins and Colorado Avalanche. The 2001 premiere attracted 927,000 viewers.

ESPN also unveiled the Seattle Kraken franchise, which lost 4-3 to the Golden Knights in Las Vegas. The game averaged 782,000 viewers, as well as over a million viewers. The network reported that streaming metrics from ESPN + are not included in the view statistics.

By comparison, the first game of the first season of the NHL 2020-21 average 972,000 the total number of viewers on the NBC sports network. The competition featured the Philadelphia Flyers and the Penguins, and was the most watched regular season game on NBCSN.

Other games that made the triple headline last season included the Chicago Blackhawks vs. Lightning and Avalanche vs. St. Louis Blues. The combo show averaged 774,000 viewers, up from 600,000 the previous season.

Alex Ovechkin # 8 of the Washington Capitals scores a goal against the New York Rangers in the second period at the Capital One Arena on October 13, 2021 in Washington DC.

Patrick Smith | Getty Images

The NHL ended its 16-year partnership with NBC Sports and reached a $ 1 billion stake with ESPN and Turner Sports last April.

TNT unveiled its double-headline national package on Wednesday and included some cross-section appeal. The channel featured NBA star commentator Charles Barkley in the pre-game show of the Washington Capitals’ 5-1 victory over the New York Rangers. 15 ET.

In this competition, Capitals star Alex Ovechkin scored twice to become fifth in history. Ovechkin, 36, has set 732 career goals and needs 163 more to beat Wayne Gretzky’s NHL record. 894 goals. TNT reported an average of 522,000 viewers in the second competition in which the Avalanche beat the Blackhawks, 4-2.

In terms of advertising, EDO estimates that the automotive category has led the way with 15.4% of advertising spend on NHL novelties this season. Restaurants accounted for 12.9% and insurance accounted for 11.9% of advertising spend. EDO added Apple ads that led to user engagement on the search engine. This is a metric that a company uses to measure the search activity of brands on the Internet within minutes of a TV ad.

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