Stanley Cup Playoffs: NBC and CBC Focus on the Eastern Conference: I-95 Battles

James WilliamsAnalyst IIIApril 27, 2012

The Rangers and the Capitals will be get plenty of national coverage on NBC
The Rangers and the Capitals will be get plenty of national coverage on NBCLen Redkoles/Getty Images

The second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs gets underway tonight as Nashville heads to the Valley of the Sun to face Phoenix. From this point there will no longer be any local telecasts of the playoffs.

NBC, NBC Sports Network, and CNBC will be handling the national broadcast chores in the United States, and in Canada it will be CBC and TSN.

The NHL has a complete list of the networks as well as the times the games are scheduled.

Clearly NBC and CBC see’s the two Eastern Conference match-ups as their marquee games.

The I-95 showdowns between the New York Rangers and the Washington Capitals along with the Philadelphia Flyers and the New Jersey Devils offer plenty of hockey happy fans that know the Amtrack train schedules and the best routes to get to each others arena's.The former Patrick Division foursome has a long history of epic battles.  

All one has to do is look at the television markets involved in the Eastern Conference semi finals to see why they are so attractive.

The Rangers and the Devils offer the network a double dose of the top media market in the country.

Then factor in Philadelphia the fourth largest media market and Washington—the nation’s capital—-delivers the eighth largest market and it all means ratings.

Networks are always looking for eyeballs, and the two series that take place along the I-95 corridor are the one's that will provide both NBC and CBC with exactly what they are looking for in the way households paying attention to the games.  

Los Angles, the nation’s second largest media market, gets some love from NBC on May 6th as game four of their series with the St. Louis Blues will air nationally on the network at 3 p.m. Meanwhile, the Phoenix series with Nashville will get plenty of play on NBC Sports Network and CNBC but not on NBC.

So in NBC's first full year of total coverage of the Stanley Cup Playoffs, they will at least in round two keep the focus on the Eastern Conference along with their CBC counterparts.