Wilder-Washington Peaked at 1.86 Million Viewers; Averaged 1.76M

By Keith Idec

The “PBC on FOX” boxing tripleheader headlined by WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder’s knockout of Gerald Washington averaged 1.76 million viewers Saturday night, according to ratings released Tuesday morning by Nielsen Media Research.

Viewership for the main event of FOX’s tripleheader peaked at 1.86 million in its final 15 minutes. The rating made the Wilder-Washington fight the most-watched boxing match thus far this year in the United States, though the telecast obviously was available to many more viewers than typical HBO, Showtime and basic-cable broadcasts because it was televised on free TV.

The unbeaten Wilder (38-0, 37 KOs) overcame a slow start against Washington (18-1-1, 12 KOs) to drop him with a right hand in the fifth round.

wilder-washington-fight (16)

Washington got up, but Wilder drilled the former USC football player with multiple left hooks soon thereafter. Referee Michael Griffin stopped the fight at 1:45 of the fifth round, with a woozy Washington still on his feet, at Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Alabama.

The Wilder-Washington tripleheader went head-to-head with a Bulls-Cavs game on ABC and a Flyers-Penguins game on NBC on Saturday night.

The NBA game, in which LeBron James didn’t play against former teammate Dwayne Wade, peaked at 2.43 million viewers. The NHL game peaked at 1.91 million viewers.

The Wilder-Washington ratings, while reasonably competitive with the NBA and NHL telecasts, were lower than Wilder’s last appearance on broadcast television. Wilder’s domination of Chris Arreola drew a peak viewership of 2.54 million in a fight also broadcast by FOX on July 16. That fight also took place at Legacy Arena.

Wilder-Washington, which marked the third time Wilder has headlined a show on broadcast television, also drew lower ratings than his 11th-round stoppage of France’s Johann Duhaupas in September 2015 at Legacy Arena. That telecast peaked at 2.36 million viewers on NBC.

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by original zero on 03-01-2017

[QUOTE=johnnycontrolet;17462927]Terrible ratings - Wilder is totally unknown in the US - how could he ever fight against guys like Klitschko or Joshua and demand a high purse? He brings nothing to the table except the title...[/QUOTE] 2.5x more people watch…

Comment by johnnycontrolet on 03-01-2017

Terrible ratings - Wilder is totally unknown in the US - how could he ever fight against guys like Klitschko or Joshua and demand a high purse? He brings nothing to the table except the title...

Comment by kej718 on 03-01-2017

Spence was able to do 6 million because there really wasn't anything to compete against him with. These numbers will go up after the playoffs.

Comment by ShoulderRoll on 03-01-2017

[QUOTE=Boxing Logic;17461358]Yikes. Some HBO shows have done better than that. Terrible ratings for Fox. Wilder needs to fight someone good people are sick of his cherry picks. It's why I didn't watch.[/QUOTE] :lol1: No HBO shows have done better than…

Comment by Butch.McRae on 02-28-2017

[QUOTE=BWC;17462177]You also need to understand UFC is a brand that is now approaching 25 years old. PBC has two years under it to market a whole new boxing platform to consumers. It's actually doing quite well considering and is probably…

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