By Keith Idec
Daniel Jacobs’ unremarkable performance in his previous appearance didn’t deter boxing fans from tuning in to his fight against Maciej Sulecki on Saturday night.
Ratings revealed Tuesday by Nielsen Media Research indicated Jacobs-Sulecki drew a peak audience of 874,000 for HBO. Their entertaining 12-round middleweight match maintained an average of 811,000 viewers.
That’s a notable increase in ratings from Jacobs’ last HBO bout. That fight – a 12-round, unanimous-decision defeat of Luis Arias – attracted a peak audience of 765,000 and an average audience of 706,000 on November 11.
Jacobs-Arias was monotonous compared to Jacobs-Sulecki, largely because Milwaukee’s Arias (18-1, 9 KOs) fought cautiously and didn’t engage against the hard-hitting Jacobs at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, New York. Poland’s Sulecki showed no such reluctance in their WBA elimination match and Brooklyn’s Jacobs seemed intent to entertain more than he did against Arias.
They traded power shots during much of their back-and-forth fight. Both boxers took those shots well, until Jacobs drilled Sulecki with a picture-perfect right hand to the middle of his face, which dropped Sulecki early in the 12th round.
Sulecki got right up and went back at Jacobs, who won on all three scorecards (117-110, 116-111, 115-112).
His victory over Sulecki marked the second bout of the 31-year-old Jacobs’ exclusive deal with HBO.
The opener of HBO’s “World Championship Boxing” doubleheader Saturday night, Jarrell Miller-Johann Duhaupas, drew a peak viewership of 834,000 and averaged 706,000 viewers.
Brooklyn’s Miller (21-0-1, 18 KOs) won their 12-round heavyweight bout by unanimous decision over France’s Duhaupas (37-5, 24 KOs). There weren’t any knockdowns during Miller-Duhaupas, but they exchanged clean power punches at times in a fight Miller won by big margins on all three scorecards (119-109, 119-109, 117-111).
Miller’s previous appearance on HBO – a ninth-round stoppage of Poland’s Mariusz Wach on the Jacobs-Arias undercard November 11 – was watched by a peak audience of 739,000 and an average audience of 673,000.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.