More than a million viewers watched David Morrell Jr.’s most recent impressive performance on FOX.
Nielsen Media Research released information Tuesday that indicated an average of 1,031,000 viewers saw Morrell’s fourth-round stoppage of Fox and the network’s post-fight coverage Saturday night from The Armory in Minneapolis. The Cuban-born Morrell (6-0, 5 KOs), who relocated to Minneapolis, dropped Fox (28-3-1, 13 KOs, 1 NC) in the fourth round before Fox’s father/trainer, Troy, implored referee Mark Nelson to stop their scheduled 12-round fight for Morrell’s WBA world super middleweight title.
FOX’s entire three-fight telecast Saturday night averaged 822,000 viewers. Nielsen’s numbers don’t include those that streamed the telecast or watched it live on FOX Deportes.
In FOX’s co-feature, Seattle-based lightweight prospect Jose Valenzuela (11-0, 7 KOs) dropped Nashville’s Austin Dulay (14-3, 10 KOs, 1 NC) three times in the first round and four times overall on his way to scoring a fourth-round technical knockout.
Their scheduled 10-rounder was stopped by a ringside physician before the action began in the fourth round. Dulay adamantly objected to the stoppage.
In the opener of the telecast, the Dominican Republic’s Alberto Puello (20-0, 10 KOs) out-boxed Minneapolis’ Ve Shawn Owens (13-3, 12 KOs) and won their 10-round welterweight bout by unanimous decision. Puello topped Owens comfortably on all three scorecards (100-90, 99-91 and 98-92).
The average audience for the Morrell-Fox tripleheader was the highest for a FOX boxing telecast since an average of 882,000 tuned in for the broadcast headlined by the 23-year-old Morrell’s first-round knockout of Mexico’s Mario Cazales (12-1, 5 KOs) on June 27 from The Armory.
Earlier Saturday night, FS1’s prelim coverage of the Morrell-Fox undercard was watched by an average of 157,000 viewers. That basic-cable telecast peaked at 211,000 viewers toward the end of the Richardson Hitchins-Malik Hawkins fight, the last bout before coverage switched from FS1 to FOX.
Manhattan’s Hitchins (13-0, 5 KOs), a junior welterweight prospect promoted by Floyd Mayweather’s company, beat Baltimore’s Hawkins (18-2, 11 KOs) by scores of 100-90, 97-93 and 96-94.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.