The Chicago Blackhawks are the Stanley Cup champions, after beating the Boston Bruins on Monday. The Hawks won their fifth Stanley Cup in franchise history and their second in the last four seasons.
The Windy City representatives rode a dominating regular season into the playoffs and – aside from having some trouble with the Red Wings in round two – were unmatched on their way to the Cup win in the shortened season.
Both the Hawks and Bruins are Original Six hockey teams and the match-up of the two historical franchises drew impressive ratings.
NBC earned a 5.6 overnight rating for the Blackhawks’ Stanley Cup-clinching win over the Bruins in Game 6, a 40 percent increase from a 4.0 rating for the series-clinching Kings-Devils Game 6 last year, according to Sports Business Daily.
Game 6 earned a 30.2 local rating in Chicago and a 33.0 rating in Boston, according to the paper.
The popularity of Original Six hockey teams was also showcased in rounds one, two and three.
In round one the Bruins played the Maple Leafs in an extremely exciting series that put the butts in the seats and brought a revived sense of energy to Toronto, which had been suffering through season after season of not making the playoffs.
In round two, the Hawks and Red Wings had what could have been the best and most competitive series of the entire 2012-13 playoffs and in round three the Bruins matched up with the Rangers. Despite Boston winning the series four games to one, the series had a different kind of energy, vibe and intensity that hockey fans have come to love.
There’s something about Original Six teams matching up with one another that makes the game all that more important.
Perhaps it’s the history, but when Original Six teams play each other – playoffs or not – ticket sales and tv ratings go up and fans are certainly in for a treat.
Photo courtesy of: The Checking Line