Lewis-Klitschko fight delivers knockout ratings for HBO in US

MUMBAI: What is it about men (and women) pummeling each other to pulp that draws viewers? In India, one constant on Ten Sports' top rated shows are World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) programmes. In the US, premium movies network HBO drew its highest audience figures for a heavyweight fight in over six years from last weekends boxing match-up between WBC heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis and Ukrainian Vitali Klitschko.


The fight, staged in Los Angeles on June 21, was watched in over 4.6 million homes, HBO's best rating since George Foreman fought Shannon Briggs in Atlantic City in 1997, has reported. 

Of course, the numbers are also because of the fact that unlike most big heavyweight fights, the match-up was not sold as a pay-per-view event. It is in PPV that the serious money is but that had to be given the go-by since the fight was scheduled at too short a notice to successfully promote and sell it.


Lewis previous fight against former champion Mike Tyson, grossed over $103 million in US PPV sales, earning $3 million more than the previous pay-per-view record. But if viewership numbers are taken, it drew 2.8 million fewer homes than the fight against Klitschko.

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