FOX’s viewership dipped Saturday night from the network’s preceding boxing broadcast a week earlier.
Nielsen Media Research reported Tuesday that the main event of that telecast – Erislandy Lara’s relatively easy, 12-round victory over huge underdog Greg Vendetti – averaged 1,042,000 viewers and attracted a peak audience of 1,067,000. FOX’s main event August 22 – Shawn Porter’s lopsided points defeat of Sebastian Formella in a 12-rounder – was watched by an average audience of 1,077,000 and drew a peak viewership of 1,225,000.
FOX’s entire three-bout broadcast Saturday night produced an average viewership of 832,000. The Porter-Formella tripleheader averaged 810,000 viewers.
Miami’s Lara (27-3-3, 15 KOs, 1 NC) was a 50-1 favorite to defeat Vendetti (22-4-1, 12 KOs), of Wakefield, Massachusetts.
The left-handed Cuban veteran won by sizeable margins on all three scorecards to retain his WBA world 154-pound title in the main event of a six-bout card at Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles. Two judges scored nine rounds apiece for Lara (117-111, 117-111), who won eight rounds on the other card (116-112).
In the co-featured fight, Denver’s Vladimir Hernandez (12-4, 6 KOs) upset Alfredo Angulo (26-8, 21 KOs) by unanimous decision in an action-packed, 10-round super middleweight match. Hernandez, who replaced an ill Caleb Truax (31-4-2, 19 KOs, 1 NC) on approximately 36 hours’ notice, won eight rounds on all three scorecards against Mexico’s Angulo (98-92, 98-92, 98-92).
In the first fight FOX televised, hard-hitting junior welterweights Luis Arcon and Abram Martinez fought to split draw in an entertaining eight-rounder.
Las Vegas’ Martinez (8-0-1, 6 KOs) and Venezuela’s Arcon (10-0-1, 10 KOs) each scored a knockdown apiece – Martinez just before the end of the second round and Arcon right before the final bell. Judge Steve Morrow scored Arcon a 76-74 winner, but Pat Russell credited Martinez for a 76-74 win and Edward Hernandez Sr. scored the bout even (75-75).
Earlier Saturday night, FS1’s broadcast of two Lara-Vendetti undercard bouts was watched by an average of 109,000 viewers. That portion of FOX’s boxing programming peaked at 146,000 viewers, early in Justin Pauldo’s eight-round, unanimous-decision defeat of Josec Ruiz.
In the fight following Pauldo’s victory, junior middleweight Brian Mendoza defeated Thomas LaManna by unanimous decision in a very competitive 10-rounder. Mendoza (19-1, 13 KOs), of Albuquerque, New Mexico, beat LaManna (28-4, 10 KOs), of Millville, New Jersey, by scores of 98-92, 98-92 and 96-94.
Pauldo (14-1, 7 KOs, 1 NC), of Orlando, Florida, beat Honduras’ Ruiz (21-4-3, 14 KOs) more comfortably than Mendoza defeated LaManna, who hurt Mendoza with a right hand late in the fourth round. The scores of Pauldo’s win in FS1’s opener were 80-72, 79-73 and 79-73.
FOX will return to the air Sunday night with another show from Microsoft Theater (8 p.m. ET; 5 p.m. PT). Cuba’s Yordenis Ugas (25-4, 12 KOs) and Abel Ramos (26-3-2, 20 KOs), of Casa Grande, Arizona, are set to meet in the main event, a 12-round fight for the vacant WBA world welterweight title.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.