Ratings Roundup: FIFA Women’s World Cup Bursts With Stellar Opening Weekend on Fox Sports, Telemundo Deportes

Ratings roundup is a rundown of rating news from the past week and is derived from press releases and reports around the industry. In this week’s edition, Fox Sports ratings increase in consecutive days from the FIFA Women’s World Cup in France, Telemundo Deportes’ coverage of the opening weekend of the FIFA Women’s World Cup doubles its average viewership from 2015 group stage, Canada continues to dominate the viewership of the 2019 NBA Finals after game 4, the Stanley Cup Finals ratings stay consistently low, and the WNBA sees another huge jump in ratings after 3rd game compared to last season.

Fox Sports Sees Growth in FIFA Women’s World Cup France 2019
According to Nielsen Media Research through match day 2, metered market ratings are up +11% vs. 2015 and vs. 2011. Norway vs. Nigeria and Spain vs. South Africa each delivered 1.0/3 metered market ratings Saturday on Fox, up +11% from 2015 non-U.S. group stage matches on Fox (.9/2). Saturday matches on Fox up +150% from 2011 non-U.S. group stage average

England’s 2-1 group stage victory over Scotland on Sunday scored a metered market rating of 1.2/3, up +33% from 2015 non-U.S. group stage matches on Fox, according to Nielsen Media Research. Fox Sports’ metered market ratings are up +10% from 2015 and +76% from 2011 in non-U.S. group stage matches. The top local markets included Tulsa (1.16), Austin (1.13), San Diego (1.12), and Richmond (1.12)

According to Nielsen Media Research, metered market ratings for Canada’s 1-0 group stage victory over Cameroon Monday were up +10% from 2015 non-U.S. group stage matches on FS1. Fox Sports’ metered market ratings are up +22% from 2015 and +62% from 2011 compared to non-U.S. group stage match averages. Through match day 4, top local markets include San Diego (1.09), Richmond (1.09), Austin (.97), Washington D.C. (.96) and Tulsa (.96)

Telemundo Deportes celebrated a successful opening weekend as well. Matchers delivered strong numbers in the Opening, based on fast national data from Nielsen, and digital data from Adobe Analytics. Through the seven matches that aired over the weekend, Telemundo doubled the 2015 Group Stage average (excluding 2015 Mexico matches, as that team didn’t qualify for this year’s event).

Telemundo Deportes’ three-day tournament opening TV-only audience averaged 258,000 viewers, outperforming historical group stage averages, (excluding Mexico team) – up +104% from the group stage average of the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup (127,000 viewers) and up +39% from the group stage average of the 2011 FIFA Women’s World Cup (186,000 viewers).

On the digital front, France’s 4-0 win against South Korea set the Telemundo record as the most live streamed Women’s World Cup match in network history with 25,000 live streams, surpassing the previous high set on June 9, 2015 (Colombia vs Mexico with 22,000 live streams). Digital live streams through opening weekend has already surpassed the entire 2015 group stage total by +15%, 82,000 vs 71,000 – excluding matches that were shown only on digital platforms in 2015.

England’s win against Scotland on Sunday is Telemundo’s most-watched game of the tournament with a Total Audience Delivery average of 472,000 viewers across Telemundo, TelemundoDeportes.com, the Telemundo Deportes En Vivo app, and the NBC Sports app.

Telemundo Deportes’ exclusive Spanish-language coverage of the FIFA Women’s World Cup continues tomorrow with the debut of U.S. Women’s National Team against Thailand, live on Telemundo at 2:30 p.m. ET with Andres Cantor and Manuel Sol calling the action from the Stade Auguste-Delaune in Reims, France joined by special guest analysts Deyna Castellanos and Marco Antonio Rodriguez.

2019 NBA Finals Remains Strongly Canadian
Game 5 of the 2019 NBA Finals between the Toronto Raptors and Golden State Warriors delivered an aggregate average audience in the United States and Canada of 25 million viewers. Through five games, the aggregate average audience (19.3 million viewers) is up 4% vs. the 2018 NBA Finals between the Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers (18.5 million viewers).

In Canada, Monday night reached 13.4 million Canadians and averaged 6.4 million viewers on Sportsnet and Citytv. It is now the most-watched program ever for Rogers Media, the largest audience ever for an NBA game in Canada (up 1.9 million from the previous high), and the most-watched program on TV in Canada this broadcast and calendar year. Through five games, 50% of the Canadian population (18.2 million viewers) has watched all or part of the 2019 NBA Finals.

In Game 4m, the matchup delivered a combined average audience of 4.9 million viewers in Canada, up +597% from Game 4 of the 2018 NBA Finals between the Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers (700,470 viewers), making it the country’s most-watched NBA game ever. In Canada, 10.8 million people watched all or part of Game 4 of the 2019 NBA Finals across simulcast coverage on TSN, CTV2, ABC (in Canada) and RDS

The game delivered an aggregate average audience in the United States and Canada of 17.7 million viewers, up +4% versus the average aggregate audience of Game 4 of the 2018 NBA Finals (17.0 million viewers).

Stanley Cup Finals Continue Downward Trend
Sunday’s Bruins-Blues Stanley Cup Final Game 6 earned a 3.6 rating and 6.48 million viewers on NBC, per Nielsen fast-nationals — down 8% in ratings and 7% in viewership from Penguins-Predators in 2017 (3.9, 6.99M), but up 16% and 20% from Penguins-Sharks in 2017 (3.1, 5.41M). There was no Game 6 last year.

The Bruins’ series-tying win trails only Penguins-Predators Game 6 and Capitals-Golden Knights Game 5 last year (3.9, 6.59M) as the highest rated and most-watched NHL game since 2015.

It ranks just sixth out of the last ten game sixes (dating back to 2008), behind Penguins-Predators, the Blackhawks’ three Game 6 clinchers, and Red Wings-Penguins in 2008 (4.0, 6.78M). Each of those games was a series-clincher.

Excluding clinchers, it was the highest rated Game 6 since the NHL returned to broadcast television in 1995. That comes with a caveat — there have only been seven such games (and three of them have involved Canadian teams).

Including the streaming audience of 141,000 viewers — a record for the NHL on NBC Sports’ digital platforms — the game had 6.62 million viewers (-7%).

Four of the six Bruins-Blues games have declined from the most recent comparable game.

WNBA Remains Persistent
ABC’s presentation of the Los Angeles Sparks vs. Minnesota Lynx on Saturday, June 8, delivered a 0.6 rating according to Nielsen. The third game of this year’s regular season lineup was up 200% from last year’s comparable matchup of Seattle Storm/Los Angeles Sparks (0.2, ESPN2). This year’s first three WNBA games are averaging 413,000 viewers across ABC and ESPN2, which is an increase of 64% compared to 2018’s first four games on ESPN2 (aired by the same date a year ago).