Ward-Kovalev draw 160K PPV buys

November 29, 2016

The Andre Ward-Sergey Kovalev PPV drew just 160,000 PPV buys as first reported by Kevin Iole.  TheRing.tv also reported the PPV buy rate for last Saturday’s event.

Ward defeated Kovalev in somewhat of a controversial decision as unofficial scorers had the fight for Kovalev.

The ratings are lower than the reported Pacquiao-Vargas PPV buy rate earlier this month which drew 300,000 PPV buys.  It was the first time that Top Rank distributed its own PPV in some time.  The Ward-Kovalev bout was distributed by HBO.

Boxing PPVs 2016

April 9, 2016 – Pacquiao-Bradley III: ~400K PPV buys

May 7, 2016 – Alvarez-Khan: ~450K-600K PPV buys

July 23, 2016 – Crawford-Postol: 50K-60K PPV buys

September 17, 2016 – Alvarez-Smith: >~300K PPV buys

November 5, 2016 – Pacquiao-Vargas: ~300K PPV buys

November 19, 2016 – Ward-Kovalev – 160,000 PPV buys

Payout Perspective:

The PPV buy rate for Ward-Kovalev might have been impacted by the Pacquiao fight and UFC 205 as it would have been the third PPV this month for combat sports fans.  The buy rate may reflect the casual boxing fan’s consumer interest.  Among those in the boxing community, Ward-Kovalev was a matchup of two of the best pound for pound fighters in the sport today.  Yet, it drew less than most UFC PPV events.  The PPV buy rate ends a down year for boxing PPVs as it tries to move beyond Mayweather and Pacquiao on PPV.

15 Responses to “Ward-Kovalev draw 160K PPV buys”

  1. jf on November 29th, 2016 9:53 AM

    Sorry boxing fans, this is the end indeed. Mayweather Pac was the aberration that confirmed the rule.

  2. d on November 29th, 2016 9:54 AM


    Wow. Absolutely pathetic. Demetrious Johnson numbers. Bellator could do better. This is how low boxing has become. Arguably the worst year in modern time for the sport.

    The future looks very bleak.

  3. Fight Fan on November 29th, 2016 11:31 AM

    Lol nobody expected this ppv to be big. Justice for a fight that shouldn’t have been a ppv.

  4. Cutch on November 29th, 2016 12:05 PM

    To be fair a few of those PPVs shouldn’t have been, HBO cutting their budget really harmed things, this probably did deserve a PPV but Pacquioao should have fought Crawford & Canelo Vs Triple G should have been the PPVs.

    UFC can be the same but that’s their business plan to run 13 PPVs a year but I don’t think a card like UFC 206 deserves to be on PPV.

  5. tops E on November 29th, 2016 12:12 PM

    Hahahaha..after giving data on how big boxing is globally and dwarfing the ufc….one fight doing bad in ppv in the u.s. means the end…how weird…hahahaha,fanboys trying desperately to have a momentum for the old dw propaganda….4 billion down hahaha

  6. d on November 29th, 2016 12:16 PM

    One fight doing bad on ppv? Boxing dwarfing the UFC? HAHAHAHAHA!!! Delusions of grandeur.

  7. turd on November 29th, 2016 12:18 PM

    the fight lost money totally pathetic, i wouldnt be surprised if hbo cuts all of boxing in the future.

    tops you are in serious denial about the health of boxing.

    this is coming from a long time boxing fan, the sport is in very bad shape. people

    dont realize how much paq vs mayweather hurt the sport the fight and card sucked.

    my brother vowed he would never buy another boxing ppv again after that fight.

  8. Jess on November 29th, 2016 1:27 PM

    Like cutch said, some of those ppvs should not have been a ppv. This number was about what I expected due to neither kovalev or ward having much of a big fan base outside of serious boxing fans. The only guys that should be on ppv right now are canelo and pac, and only if the match up is good enough.

  9. Anti Trolls on November 29th, 2016 2:15 PM

    TOPS get a life

  10. Joey Vegas on November 29th, 2016 7:34 PM

    There’s nobody that will tell you how to do this. This is all a wonder of work. I could see these fringe numbers because neither Ward or Kovalev are big names as Tyson De La Hoya Gatti Sugar Ray. The pot is getting warm again. Fury should make it boil. I fight him tomorrow!! Now!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They never listen.. I didn’t even see the fight. It’s all the evidence that one would need tho. How did Holyfield do it? How did Ali do it? How did Manny do it?

  11. Wil on November 29th, 2016 8:04 PM

    EVERYONE knew this wasnt not going to be a big sale, neither man is a PPV fighter and everyone but HBO seems to know that. This should have been a regular HBO Championship Boxing show. I will add one more thing…..the art of REAL promotion has been lost in boxing….Don King, for all his faults on shafting boxers, knew how to promote boxing like no one else, he knew how to get the advertising where it needed to be, and he knew when to instigate fighters at press conferences into scuffles and trash talking…..which the UFC has adopted I might add. Its the art of promotion that is missing in boxing in the USA….the British promoters such as Matchroom understand it very well, which is why you see fireworks and laser shows and elaborate ring walks at British, German, and even Japanese boxing cards. You just do not see that in the USA, and you really dont even see ringwalks anymore……the entertainment factor around boxing has been elminated, even PBC doesnt get this. Boxing promoters of today simply do not understand the bigger picture, they do not seem interested in risk vs return in terms of spending more to make more, and they seem totally focused on only appealing to die hard fans rather than reaching a broader audience…now that is omething PBC has been able to do with correct placement of fights at the right times as well as outside promotion….but they are still missing the pieces of the puzzle. I grew up playing Mike Tyson punch out and various other boxing video games, where are they? UFC has them. I would expect Jay Z and Roc Nation, as a major entertainment icon, to understand this, and even they dont. There is no doubt that overall, the appeal of boxing in the USA at least is lessening, that isnt the fault of the fighters but it is the fault of both the promoters and the networks. And If I was a promoter, I would start to reevaluate my relationship with HBO, who is putting more of their money behind their shows like GOT and West World and less into expensive boxing. I definitely hope all promoters of this fight, and the network, lost money, let that be a lesson to them. Because EVERY boxing fan saw this coming.

  12. Fight Fan on November 29th, 2016 8:46 PM

    Agree, Game of thrones is driving up the subscription cost for hbo as well. Showtime does the same with their shows.

  13. tops E on November 29th, 2016 9:01 PM

    After stating facts in previous articles on how boxing is so much bigger than mma globally what i get in return— my brother not buying boxing ppv ever— hahahaha…oh no its the end of the world hahahaha

  14. d on November 30th, 2016 1:28 AM

    The reason why HBO/Showtime have slashed their boxing budgets and increased them towards shows like Westworld, GOT, etc. is because the boxing ratings are terrible, they aren’t making much money and those shows generate millions upon millions more viewers per show.

    Boxing as it stands right now is heading the way of the dodo and abroad it isn’t anything to write home about. The sport isn’t what it once was, and mma is more exciting to the majority of combat sports fans. Simple evolution.

  15. turd on November 30th, 2016 4:20 AM

    tops how do you explain hbo and showtime cutting there boxing funding if it so big

    you really are not that smart

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