Chavez-Vera Draws Highest Rated Boxing Telecast of 2013

By Jake Donovan 

The ratings results for the ring return of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. suggests that either absence makes the heart grow fonder, or there’s nothing viewing audiences prefer more than a good old-fashioned train wreck.

Chavez Jr’s points win over Brian Vera—marred in controversy both before the fight and once official scorecards were read—generated an average viewership than 1.4 million viewers throughout Saturday’s live broadcast on HBO from Carson, California. The figure makes the event the most watched cable fight of 2013, according to Nielsen Ratings reports.

The event took a major hit during fight week, when it was revealed that Chavez Jr.–who already postponed the bout and had the weight limit moved up–could not make the super middleweight limit. Promoters Bob Arum (Chavez Jr.) and Artie Pellulo (Vera) negotiated a deal that granted Vera a handsome six-figure surplus to allow the fight go on at a maximum pre-fight limit of 173 lb.

Chavez Jr. went on to win a 10-round decision, in a fight that most viewers believed should have either been scored a draw or in favor of Vera, who entered the fight as a massive underdog. 

The tally eclipses that of the year’s previous high, which also aired on HBO. Adrien Broner's stoppage win over Gavin Rees–his last bout on the network before defecting to Showtime–averaged 1.398 million viewers over the course of the five rounds of action this past February.

Saturday’s headliner marked Chavez Jr’s first fight since Sept. ’12, when he came within one punch of knocking out lineal middleweight king Sergio Martinez. The unforgettable 12th round was the lone competitive moment in an otherwise landslide decision, resulting in Chavez Jr’s first loss. Adding insult to injury was the result of the post-fight drug test, which revealed traces of marijuana in the second-generation fighter’s system, resulting in a lengthy ban and hefty fine.

Chavez Jr.–Vera was part of a split-site doubleheader. In the opening leg of the telecast, light heavyweight king Adonis Stevenson scored a stoppage over former titlist Tavoris Cloud after seven rounds. Their portion of the show–which aired live from Montreal, Canada–drew 1.177 million viewers, according to Nielsen.

Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of, as well as the Records Keeper for the Transnational Boxing Ratings Board and a member of Boxing Writers Association of America.

Twitter: @JakeNDaBox

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by liuj88 on 10-03-2013

[QUOTE=ShoulderRoll;13800569]This explains why Chavez Jr "won" the fight. There is no way that Arum is going to let someone like Brian Vera mess with one of his cash cows.[/QUOTE] For your accusation to be correct, Arum must have had a…

Comment by liuj88 on 10-03-2013

[QUOTE=Fetta;13800444]No man you sign up for cable you can get HBO pretty much fir free. I have both so i dont care. Most who have HBO dont care whos fighting they just wanna watch sports[/QUOTE] Your claim is clearly without…

Comment by thiefery on 10-02-2013

Isn't that date the same as the showtime PPV??

Comment by Skip Bayless on 10-02-2013

haha chavez is a gangster.

Comment by LeG00N on 10-02-2013

La Gran Vaca Dinero!! Respect

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (43)
Top Headlines Arum Says ESPN Momentum Building, Big Plans Ahead in 2018 Danny O'Connor Gets Off The Floor, Decisions Steve Claggett Felix Verdejo Very Angry With Decision To Stop The Fight Video: Crawford's Coach Shreds Horn - Warns Spence, Thurman Kyril Relikh vs. Eduard Troyanovsky Showdown is Ordered Danny Roman vs. Moises Flores Must Happen By June, Says WBA Arum Wants Ramirez, Prograis to Take Interim Fights on Same Card Michael Conlan Hopes To Fight in Belfast on June Date Kovalev-Marcus Browne Deal Done for HBO Bout; Date Not Set Arum: Felix Verdejo Very Disappointing; It's a Lack of Discipline Felix Valera, Luis Lebron Grab Knockout Wins in Santo Domingo Sam Soliman, Wes Capper Fight To a Twelve Round Draw Ryuya Yamanaka Retains WBO Strap, Canizales Wins WBA Belt Photos: Gvozdyk Earns WBC Shot, Michael Conlan Excites Crowd Joe Joyce-Dereck Chisora Likely To Be Confirmed For Bellew-Haye Photos: Jose Ramirez Breaks Down Amir Imam For WBC Belt Roach: Linares Has Fight Left in Him; Might Be Too Old for Loma Photos: Antonio Lozada Drills, Stops Felix Verdejo in Shocker Photos: Joe Joyce With Crushing One-Punch KO of Donnie Palmer CompuBox: Jose Ramirez's Pressure, Power Shots Was Difference Robert Helenius Wins Split Decision Over Yury Bykhautsou Gvozdyk: I Want The Stevenson vs. Jack Winner in My Next Fight! Giovanni Cabrera Mioletti Shocks Ray Lampkin With KO in Two Lozada: I Knew I Would KO Felix Verdejo, I Went For it in Tenth Cristian Mijares Gets Stoppage Win Over Fernando Saucedo Jaime Munguia Knocks Out Johnny Navarrete in The Third Roach: Ramirez Won Every Round, 2 Judges Should Be Investigated! Don King: Imam Didn't Throw Enough, Ramirez Was Relentless Michael Conlan Demolishes David Berna in Two Rounds Jose Ramirez Lands Gold, Decisions Amir Imam For WBC Title Jose Ramirez vs. Amir Imam - LIVE BoxingScene Scorecard Gvozdyk Wins Tough Decision Over Amar, in Line For WBC Shot Ramirez: I'm Ready To Fight Best, No Matter What Critics Think Yeison Cohen Passes Away After KO Loss Earlier This Month Antonio Lozada Drops, Stops Felix Verdejo in Tenth Round Joe Joyce Destroys Donnie Palmer With Big Knockout in One Christopher Diaz Wins by TKO, Rodriguez Suffers Hand Injury Jose Pedraza Sheds Rust, Pounds Out Decision Over Rodriguez Whittom Dies After Being in 10 Month Coma Following KO Loss McKinley: Ramirez Doesn't Have Power, Imam By Far Best Opponent

Latest Active Forum Threads