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American Pharoah, Stanley Cup lead to ratings milestones for history-making 'Championship Saturday' on NBC


Mon, Jun 8th 2015 10:20 am

American Pharoah captures first Triple Crown in 37 years as Belmont Stakes posts 12.3 overnight rating

NHL Stanley Cup Final Game 2 registers 4.8 overnight - best Game 2 on record on broadcast TV

Serena Williams' French Open victory for her 20th Grand Slam singles title up 21 percent from last year's women's final

NBC Sports' history-making "Championship Saturday," featuring American Pharoah's victory in the 147th Belmont Stakes to win the first Triple Crown in 37 years, Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final between the Chicago Blackhawks and Tampa Bay Lightning, and Serena Williams winning her 20th Grand Slam singles title with her French Open victory, registered ratings milestones, according to metered market data provided Sunday by The Nielsen Company.

Belmont Stakes

"The 37-year wait is over. American Pharoah is finally the one! American Pharoah has won the Triple Crown!" - Larry Collmus' race call on NBC

On Saturday afternoon, American Pharoah became the first Triple Crown winner since Affirmed in 1978 with a 51/2-length victory in the Belmont Stakes. The race portion of the telecast (6:15-7:15 p.m. ET) registered a 12.3/27 metered market rating - the third-best overnight for a Belmont Stakes on record (People Meter history dates to 1988).

•NBC has posted back-to-back 12-plus overnight ratings for the Triple Crown's third jewel (12.9 for California Chrome's attempt in 2014) - marking the first time in People Meter history that successive Belmont Stakes have topped a 12 overnight.

•The 2015 Belmont Stakes posted the highest metered market rating for a Saturday afternoon sporting event since NBC's telecast of the Ravens-Patriots AFC Divisional Playoff Jan. 10 (20.9).

•The New York market, the home of the Belmont Stakes, registered a 16.6 rating/36 share - up 5 percent from last year's Belmont (15.8/37) and ranking as the second-highest Belmont in the market behind only Smarty Jones' Triple Crown attempt in 2004 (20.5/38).

NHL Stanley Cup Final Game 2

Saturday night's Chicago Blackhawks-Tampa Bay Lightning contest on NBC, in which the Lightning won 4-3 to even the series at one game apiece, delivered a 4.8 metered market rating, making it NBC's best Stanley Cup Final Game 2 overnight ever and best on broadcast television on record. It was up 5 percent vs. last year's double overtime Game 2 (4.56, NYR-L.A.).

•The game (7:15-10:15 p.m. ET), which immediately followed NBC Sports' coverage of the Belmont Stakes, posted a 22.6 rating in Chicago and a 15.1 in Tampa. NBC was the No. 1 network in each market during the game.

•Rounding out the top five markets were Buffalo (8.6), Milwaukee (6.7) and Ft. Myers, Florida (6.5).

Also Saturday on NBC and NBCSN...

•Williams' three-set French Open victory against Lucie Safarova - marking Williams' 20th career Grand Slam singles crown - registered a 1.88 metered market rating on NBC, up 21 percent from last year's women's final.

•Premier Boxing Champions on NBC (3-4:30 p.m. ET), featuring Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero's split decision win over Aron Martinez posted a .95 overnight - up 12 percent from NBC's prior "PBC on NBC" afternoon telecast on May 23.

•Scott Dixon's Indy Car victory in the Firestone 600 on NBCSN Saturday night drew a .37 metered market rating - up 6 percent from last year's Texas race.

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