Curling just misses sweeping the ratings
There is no debate on what sport dominates the televisioin ratings in Canada. (Hint: It involves a saucer pass, which hockey fans have been explaining to me for days as if I were a moron because I professed ignorance of such a thing on Monday.)
But curling came within a brush hair of sweeping (enough puns for you?) the top weekend TV spot. Had Canada managed to make it to the final, there's a pretty good chance that could have beaten out Hockey Night In Canada.
As it was, the championship game between Germany and Scotland still managed to draw almost 1 million viewers Sunday in becoming the most-watched match not involving Canada. The playoff game between Canada and Germany on Friday topped the million mark.
While it's technically not a sports event, the CBC mini-series on the life of the network's face of hockey scored well in the ratings. Part One of Keep Your Head Up, Kid: The Don Cherry Story averaged 1.38 million viewers and ``the gripping conclusion" as the ads heralded it did 1.27 million. Amazing.
And if you're wondering about the NCAA basketball ratings, The Score/Sun TV's combined best showing over the weekend was 160,000 -- which may or may not indicate anything. The Score claims that 90 per cent of those watching are tuning in to either The Score or Sun TV -- which may or may not indicate anything. (If you're wondering, those in the GTA who choose to watch CBS are in facting watching it on Sun TV.)
The good news is that the Canadian channels' weekend average audience of 142,000 is up 42 per cent over last year's comparable weekend.
Here are the top weekend sports ratings on English-language television, according to BBM Canada overnight figures:
1. NHL, Rangers-Leafs/Devils-Habs/Panthers-Sens, Saturday, CBC: 1,500,000
2. Curling, Canada vs. Germany playoff, Friday, TSN: 1,069,000
3. Curling, women's worlds final, Germany vs. Scotland, Sunday, TSN: 990,000
3. Curling, women's worlds semifinal, Canada vs. Scotland, Saturday, TSN: 990,000
5. NHL, Canucks at Sharks, Saturday, CBC: 987,000
6. NHL, Maple Leafs at Penguins, Sunday, Sportsnet Ontario, 860,000*
7. NHL, Senators at Sabres, Friday, TSN: 721,000
8. Curling, women's worlds playoff, Scotland vs. Sweden, Saturday, TSN: 599,000
9. NHL, Hockey Night In Canada pre-game, Saturday, CBC: 555,000
10. Figure skating, world championships, Saturday, CBC: 382,000
11. PGA, Arnold Palmer Invitationial final round, Sunday, Global: 358,000
12. PGA, Arnold Palmer Invitational, Saturday, Global: 297,000
13. NBA, Raptors at Nuggets, Friday, TSN2: 263,000
14. Curling, women's worlds bronze, Canada vs. Sweden, Sunday, TSN2: 242,000
15. Auto racing, NASCAR pre-race, Sunday, TSN: 241,000**
* Ontario only
** Viewers on U.S. channel not calculated.
OTHER STUFF: There won't be any shortage of Tiger Woods coverage next week, though most of it will be (thankfully) restricted to golf. ESPN did some fancy negotiating with the nabobs at Augusta National and will show Tiger's first tee shot. TSN is likely to have that, along with the rest of the weekday coverage. ... XM Canada is also getting into the Tiger stuff and will carry hole-by-hole radio coverage of the tournament starting every day at 2 p.m. ... If the prospect of live golf on radio doesn't turn your crank, Talk 820 will launch the second season of its Canadian PGA Radio Show on Saturday at 10 a.m. Co-hosted by CPGA executive Jeff Dykeman and Hamilton Spectator golf writer Garry McKay, the show is also available online at www.cpga.com.