Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Pascal-Bute Produces Lukewarm Ratings Results

By Jake Donovan

Fans in Canada responded in droves to the January 18 light heavyweight bout between Jean Pascal and Lucian Bute, but the HBO-televised headliner barely caused a ripple anywhere else in North America.

Televised ratings for the live boxing telecast from Montreal drew an average of roughly 877,000 viewers, the lowest total for any World Championship Boxing telecast in more than 13 months, according to Nielsen Media Research. The main event averaged 982,000 viewers, topping out at around 1.13 million. 

Pascal won a 12-round decision in a matchup of former champions. Bute seemed disinterested in engaging until late in the fight, briefly creating anxious moments in an otherwise tepid affair. In the televised co-feature, heavyweight contender Mike Perez was forced to overcome a cut early in the fight to barely escape with a 10-round draw over a determined Carlos Takam.

While HBO dominated the ratings in 2013 – landing 21 of the Top 25 most watched cable televised boxing shows on the year – the card marks its second straight in which the network failed to generate 1 million viewers. Worse, the January 18 rating reflects a 13% decrease from the 2013 season average, which was already down 18% overall from the numbers posted in 2011.

HBO enjoyed a steady 2013 campaign overall, but ended with a whimper; its December 7 season finale topped out at 718,000 viewers, with the overall show averaging a dismal 518,000 viewers, the lowest rating in the history of its Boxing After Dark series.

The headliner saw Guillermo Rigondeaux take a 12-round shutout over a reluctant Joseph Agbeko, a bout that decreased in viewership and live attendance as the rounds progressed.

The high ratings point of that evening came from the co-feature, when James Kirkland stopped Glen Tapia in the 6th round of their super welterweight thriller.

The anticipated bout between Pascal and Bute was supposed to take place last May, in a split site package with Carl Froch’s eventual 12-round win over Mikkel Kessler in their thrilling rematch. Those plans fell through when Bute suffered a broken hand, thus postponing the bout by nearly eight months.

More than 20,000 fans packed into the Bell Centre in Montreal to take in the action between two of the nation’s favorite adopted boxing sons. However, the interest didn’t carry over among HBO viewers. In addition to there being little at stake in the fight, it was questioned how a doubleheader lacking championship action could serve as a showcase for the network’s World Championship Boxing series.

The network hopes to bounce back strong this weekend, as Mikey Garcia defends his 130 lb. title versus Juan Carlos Burgos. The bout – which marks Garcia’s fifth straight appearance on HBO – headlines on the 2014 premiere of Boxing After Dark, with Bryant Jennings and Artur Szpilka colliding in a scheduled 10-round heavyweight bout in the co-feature.

Garcia drew consistently well in all three of his network appearances in 2013. However, the show faces direct competition from network rival Showtime, which makes its 2014 debut with a fan-friendly doubleheader from Washington D.C.

The main event pits a local favorite from the nation’s capital, 140 lb. titlist Lamont Peterson in a scheduled 12-round bout with unbeaten Dierry Jean, while super welterweight contenders Jermell Charlo and Gabriel Rosado square off in the televised co-feature.

The last time the two cable giants went head-to-head produced dismal results for both - the aforementioned Rigondeaux-Agbeko card was the lowest rated in the history of Boxing After Dark main events, yet still (barely) outperformed Showtime's quadruple header from Brooklyn, which was topped by Paul Malignaggi's 12-round points win over Zab Judah.

Showtime's doubleheader on Saturday begins at 9:00PM ET; HBO's telecast goes live at 9:45PM ET.

Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by guitarboyled on 01-25-2014

[QUOTE=Russian Crushin;14166632]Like i've said 1 million times, nobody outside of Canada gave a sh1t about this fight.[/QUOTE] Just like no one outside the US gives a ***** about that little event you call the SUPER BOWL and what's that other…

Comment by ShoulderRoll on 01-25-2014

[QUOTE=Rip Chudd;14167740]So much for Pascal calling this fight the Canadian's Mayweather vs Pacquiao[/QUOTE] It was big in Canada but not anywhere else.

Comment by deanrw on 01-25-2014

It was never a huge demand fight except for those in Montreal. On that note the fight would have been much more interesting if it would have been made earlier. Time though can kill momentum. Pascal lost Momentum with Hopkins…

Comment by Hougigo on 01-25-2014

[QUOTE=Rip Chudd;14167740]So much for Pascal calling this fight the Canadian's Mayweather vs Pacquiao[/QUOTE] He called it that? LOL

Comment by Rip Chudd on 01-25-2014

So much for Pascal calling this fight the Canadian's Mayweather vs Pacquiao

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (16)
Top Headlines Mario Barrios Discusses Next Fight, Move in Weight, More Hearn: Flattering For Brook That Pacquiao is Khan's Warm-Up Fight Golovkin: Jacobs is Smarter, Stronger, Much Better Since Pirog KO Emotional Danny Garcia Discusses Dad's Prison Stint, Cancer Economides Returns on 4/22; Simmons Out Of British Title Fight Thurman Feels Edge in Size, Power Will Play Role in Garcia Fight Photos: Shinsuke Yamanaka, Carlos Carlson Ready For War Joshua "Would Love" For Tony Bellew To Drill David Haye in Upset Hearn Assures That Haye Will Not Withdraw From Bellew Fight Canelo: You Haven't Seen My Best Yet, I Get Better in Each Fight Danny Garcia: Thurman is My Fourth or Fifth Best Opponent Peterson Willing to Wait for Garcia-Thurman Winner If Needed Danny Garcia: Beating Thurman 'Makes Me the Face of Boxing' Golovkin's Promoter: Canelo Fight is Looking Good For The Fall Haye, Bellew Warned To Tone Down Language By British Board Billy Joe Saunders Breaks Down Liam Smith vs. Liam Williams Cecilia Braekhus vs. Anabelle Farias in The Works For June 9 Michael Watson Pleads For Witnesses of Attack To Come Forward Booth Wonders if Haye Will Fade in Second Half With Bellew Knockout CP Freshmart Stops Odaira To Retain WBA World Title Cedric Vitu vs. Marcello Matano IBF Eliminator in Play Ricky Hatton: I Think Pacquiao Will Have Too Much For Khan Dennis Ceylan Says Isaac Lowe Clash is Now Personal Pacquiao vs. Khan on May 19, Says Koncz After Arum Meeting Keith Thurman Explains Why He's Not Afraid To Let That '0' Go Chavez Jr, Nacho Get Off To a Fantastic Start in Camp For Canelo Antonio Moran vs. Richard Zamora on Boxeo Telemundo Golovkin Still Wants Mayweather at 154, Has No Respect For Canelo Video: Tom Loeffler on Golovkin-Jacobs, Canelo Talks, More DiBella: Thurman vs. Garcia Will Decide The Top Dog at 147 Video: Gennady Golovkin Talks Training Camp, Jacobs, Canelo Video: Gennady Golovkin Putting in Work For Jacobs Defense Chris Kongo Discusses His Career, Working Up The Ranks Video: Abel Sanchez on Golovkin-Jacobs, Canelo-Chavez, More Photos: Gennady Golovkin in Beast Mode For Danny Jacobs Fight Stevens to Lemieux: Bring Smelling Salts for the KO, Pretty Boy! Granat: After Dimitrenko - I Want Breazeale, Whyte, Luis Ortiz Photos: Claressa Shields Holds Open Workout in Detroit De La Hoya: Mayweather-McGregor Won't Happen in a Million Years Photos: Shinsuke Yamanaka, Carlos Carlson - Go Face To Face
Advertisement
Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement