Home Boxing News Garcia’s showcase, Jacobs’ chaotic win garner views on ESPN

Garcia’s showcase, Jacobs’ chaotic win garner views on ESPN

Garcia Vs. Malignaggi pic. Courtesy: Ed Diller/DiBella Entertainment

On Saturday night, August 1, Premier Boxing Champions held its second installment on ESPN. Featured was a world-renown superstar in Danny Garcia taking on big-talking Brooklynite Paulie Malignaggi, and the numbers bore fruit with a fascinating fight card and all of the sideshows it would entail.

The second PBC on ESPN delivered the largest boxing audience on ESPN since May 22, 1998 when IBA super welterweight titlist Bronco McKart defeated Ronald Weaver via unanimous decision on their airwaves.

An average audience of 1,073,000 viewers watched the event – a 34 percent overall increase including 55 percent from the crucial 25-54 age bracket since the first edition. July 11’s PBC on ESPN premier telecast averaged 800,000 viewers, peaking at 1.2 million viewers. This telecast peaked during the main event with nearly 1.5 million viewers according to Nielsen Media Research.

At the top of the show, Danny Garcia spent many of the early rounds looking to neutralize Malignaggi’s quick jab with power punches and body shots. Malignaggi fought hard in what he would later say was probably his final appearance in the ring, but was outgunned by the man seven years younger than he.

Garcia poaches Paulie.  Photo Credit: Ed Diller/DiBella Entertainment
Garcia poaches Paulie. Photo Credit: Ed Diller/DiBella Entertainment

Malignaggi picked his spots and landed flush with a good uppercut in round seven, but Garcia’s body work would soon see a decline in Malignaggi’s output, and that would present referee Arthur Mercante Jr’s chance to step in and put an end to it in round nine. Malignaggi, still on his feet and with his wits about him, had no qualms about the stoppage as Garcia’s taut, muscular frame wore on him; eliminating the two-division champion’s mobility in short time.

As Mercante rescued Malignaggi, it became clear that the time had come for him to offer one final oration from behind the ropes and announce his retirement. He came close enough, stating that he is “probably not fighting again” despite veering away from an “emotional decision.” It’s safe to say his undivided attention will go to commentary booth, where it had best be at this point in his career.

Garcia, on the other hand, has now risen up to become a contender at welterweight. With more weight, comes more on his shoulders to improve and compete with the likes of PBC stablemates Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter, whom the former unified 140-lb champ hopes to face soon enough. “Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter are great fighters in this division, and they’re both represented by Al Haymon so if they want we can make it happen,” he said after Saturday night’s win.

A frenetic scene stirred in less than six minutes of boxing in the co-main event as Daniel Jacobs defended his WBA “regular” middleweight title against Sergio Mora. The bout was off to a fast start in the first round as both men dropped hard to the canvas — Mora fell firstly from a counter right hand by Jacobs — while Jacobs followed moments later whilst moving in a precipitous hunt of “The Latin Snake.” He was nipped flush by a counter left hand and went down for a count.

The dust settled for round two and Jacobs practiced care as to not get hit with many punches and to land the more accurate ones himself. Jacobs barreled strong shots towards Mora as round two came to a close, but while Mora went down from a punch it was what would later be revealed as a fractured right ankle that forced the bout’s stoppage. Jacobs retained his title via TKO at 2:55 of round two.

Mora will need help leaving the ring after sustaining an ankle injury. Photo Credit: Lucas Noonan/Premier Boxing Champions
Mora will need help leaving the ring after suffering an ankle injury. Photo Credit: Lucas Noonan/Premier Boxing Champions

Also receiving TV time was a welterweight match-up that offered little two-way as Puerto Rico’s Prichard Colon knocked out Michael Finney at 1:23 of round two. On ESPN3, the online streaming service by ESPN, Travis Peterkin and Lenin Castillo met with undefeated records intact, and left with their first non-win as the bout was declared a draw (76-74 for Peterkin, 75-75, 75-75). Off-TV, Polish-born heavyweight prospect Adam Kownacki added his tenth knockout in eleven wins in the second round, stopping Maurenzo Smith at 2:26.

Furthermore, Heather Hardy defeated Renata Domsodi in a clash of female super bantamweights, Rafael Vasquez trounced Mario Macias in the first round to earn his eighth-straight win, while Titus Williams and Thomas Velasquez won in their respective pro-debuts against Micah Branch and Gabriel Braxton.