- Dan Rafael, Boxing
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A few notes from around the boxing world:
• Unified light heavyweight titlist Sergey Kovalev’s exciting eight-round knockout of former champion Jean Pascal on Saturday night at the Bell Centre in Montreal drew an average audience of 1.152 million viewers to HBO’s live airing, which began at about midnight, according to Nielsen Media Research. The fight peaked at 1.2 million viewers for Kovalev’s sixth fight on the network in 19 months. The entire three-fight broadcast averaged 956,000 viewers. The opening bout, featuring light heavyweight Isaac Chilemba’s rout of Vasily Lepikhin, averaged 850,000 viewers (peaking at 968,000) and the heavyweight elimination co-feature between Vyacheslav “Czar” Glazkov and Steve Cunningham registered 958,000 viewers (peaking at 1.057 million).
• Junior welterweight contender Viktor Postol, the mandatory challenger for unified world champion Danny Garcia, who agreed to a step-aside deal to allow Garcia to fight his nontitle catch weight fight with titleholder Lamont Peterson on April 11, is set to fight on the undercard at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. A spot on the undercard was part of the step-aside deal for Postol (26-0, 11 KOs), 31, of Ukraine, who has not fought since scoring an 11th-round knockout of Selcuk Aydin last May. Postol likely will face Mexican journeyman Jesus Gurrola (20-7-3, 9 KOs) in a tune-up for his eventual title bout -- be it against Garcia or another opponent for a vacant belt should Garcia vacate, as many expect he will.
• Puerto Rican flyweight contender McWilliams Arroyo (15-2, 13 KOs), 29, has been added to the undercard of junior lightweight titlist Orlando Salido’s defense against Rocky Martinez on April 11 in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Arroyo will face former junior flyweight titlist Ramon Garcia Hirales (20-5-1, 12 KOs), 32, of Mexico, in a 10-round flyweight bout on the pay-per-view broadcast, PR Best Boxing announced on Tuesday. They are both coming off decision losses in September world title bouts. McWilliams traveled to Thailand and lost a split decision to flyweight titleholder Amnat Ruenroeng and Hirales dropped a unanimous decision challenging junior flyweight titleholder Javier Mendoza in September.
A few notes from around the boxing world: • Unified light heavyweight titlist Sergey Kovalev’s exciting eight-round knockout of former champion Jean Pascal on Saturday night at the Bell Centre in Montreal drew an average audience of 1.