Showtime's Maidana-Broner Fight The Third-Most Watched On Net Since '09
Showtime averaged 1.3 million viewers for the Marcos Maidana-Adrien Broner boxing main event last Saturday night, making it the "third most watched fight for the network since 2009 when Showtime began tracking individual bouts," according to R. Thomas Umstead of MULTICHANNEL NEWS. Maidana upset the previously undefeated Broner in a unanimous decision win. The average audience for the entire four-fight telecast "also ranks as the fourth-largest live boxing telecast on Showtime" since '04. Network officials added that overall, the Showtime Championship Boxing series’ in '13 is seeing its average viewership up 24% over last year and up 64% over '11 (MULTICHANNEL.com, 12/17).
NO MONEY, NO PROBLEM: In L.A., Lance Pugmire wrote Floyd Mayweather Jr. moving to Showtime "still stings HBO." But the net "rallied in the final months of 2013 with new stars," and HBO Sports President Ken Hershman "isn't expecting to be shuttled out of his office anytime during what he assesses will be a big 2014 for his company." Ratings show that HBO "remains the TV home of choice among fight fans, but Showtime enjoyed a remarkable spike in viewership thanks to the Golden Boy link," and Mayweather and Canelo Alvarez "each is due to fight at least twice more next year." Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer on Tuesday said that while his "commitment remains to create 'mouth-watering matchups,' he's not averse to renewing business with HBO in some capacity." Schaefer said, "This was not a divorce. It was a separation. We just had the best year we've ever had at Golden Boy. Showtime had theirs, too. But that doesn't mean you don't take calls if the time is right. I have no hard feelings against HBO." Meanwhile, HBO Sports VP/Sports Publicity & Media Relations Ray Stallone "dismissed chatter that Hershman was in trouble." Stallone: "None of that has tracked back to here ... there's no rumor or gossip to respond to. HBO boxing has been refortified. Look at the stars that still work here" (L.A. TIMES, 12/18).