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Penguins-Sharks Stanley Cup Final was most watched non-Original Six series in 15 years

2016 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Game Six

SAN JOSE, CA - JUNE 12: Joe Pavelski #8 of the San Jose Sharks shakes hands with Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins after losing Game Six 3-1 and the 2016 NHL Stanley Cup Final at SAP Center on June 12, 2016 in San Jose, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)

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The 2016 Stanley Cup Final matched Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins up against the San Jose Sharks, becoming the most watched non-Original Six series in 15 years, according to NBC Sports PR.

The Penguins returned to championship status, taking the series in six games thanks to a road win Sunday in San Jose against a Sharks team that had made its first franchise appearance in the final.

As per NBC Sports PR, the six-game series averaged 3.948 million viewers, making it the most watched Stanley Cup Final without an Original Six team since 2001, when the Colorado Avalanche defeated the New Jersey Devils.

Viewership was up 31 per cent from the 2012 final, which was the last time two non-Original Six teams -- the L.A. Kings and the Devils -- battled for the Stanley Cup.

This series also drew increased ratings in Pittsburgh, where anticipation for another championship had been growing before fans eventually got to celebrate the team’s second Stanley Cup title in eight years.

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