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TUESDAY'S GAMES BREAK VIEWING RECORDS FOR EXHIBITION HOCKEY IN CANADA

It is now very clear that Canadians really missed their hockey. After a close to five month hiatus, the NHL finally returned Tuesday night with exhibition games to allow teams to prepare for the upcoming play-ins and round robin. Canadians watched in droves.

"Hockey is BACK," stated Sportsnet reporter Chris Johnston on Twitter. "Last night's games were the two most-watched NHL exhibition games in Sportsnet's history, with over 4.3-million Canadian viewers."

To put that in perspective, new episodes of the Big Bang Theory, which is one of the most popular shows in Canada, gets around 2.66 million viewers. Game six of the 2011 Stanley Cup final between Vancouver and Boston, the last time a Canadian team was in the last round, drew 6.69 million viewers. Vancouver had the chance to end the series that night. Instead, Boston forced a game seven and would go on to win it all. Game seven took in over eight million Canadian spectators.



Besides Tuesday night being the first time fans had a chance to see hockey in a long time, many likely tuned in for at least a few minutes to see what the atmosphere would be like without fans in attendance. Whether those types of numbers can be maintained remains to be seen, but with very little else on in the summer the NHL may have hit a gold mine with it's 24-team Return to Play format.

TIM TUCKER
JULY 29, 2020  (17H49)
QUIZ ON TRADERUMOURS
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What does Elton John collect?
GLASSES
HATS
PIANOS
SHOES
SURVEY
Which scenario would you prefer if the NHL season restart?
END OF REGULAR SEASON + PLAYOFFS
IMMEDIATELY PLAYOFFS WITH 16 TEAMS
IMMEDIATELY PLAYOFFS WITH MORE TEAMS
IT'S BETTER TO CANCEL THE SEASON