Deontay Wilder's return to Showtime proved to be a big hit in the ratings, earning a rare win over HBO's boxing telecast.
According to ratings released by Nielsen Media Research, Wilder's first-round knockout win over Bermane Stiverne averaged 824,000 viewers for the live airing on Showtime on November 4, peaking at 887,000. That fight headlined the latest Barclays Center boxing card on Showtime and it was for the WBC heavyweight title. The fight not only had to contend with college football, but also had to deal with the UFC 217 pay-per-view which was taking place at Madison Square Garden, 30 minutes away from the Barclays Center.
The co-main event of the Barclays Center card saw Shawn Porter defeat Adrian Granados via unanimous decision to win the WBC Silver welterweight title. That fight averaged 646,000 viewers (696,000 peak). The television opener was Sergey Lipinets’ decision over Akihiro Kondo to win the vacant IBF junior welterweight championship, averaging 427,000 viewers (530,000 peak). Wilder's win drew a live viewership more than twice as big as Anthony Joshua's IBF and WBA heavyweight title defense against Carlos Takam in Cardiff, Wales.
Earlier in the day on HBO, Dmitry Bivol’s first WBA light heavyweight title defense in his HBO debut against Trent Broadhurst from Monte Carlo averaged 341,000 viewers peaking at 356,000. Like Wilder, Bivol knocked his opponent out in the first round to retain his belt. HBO’s prime time replay averaged 289,000 viewers (305,000 peak).