USA TODAY Sports
Bernard Hopkins' win against Tavoris Cloud didn't have major pre-fight buzz, and that was reflected in the viewer numbers on HBO.
Bernard Hopkins has been one of the better HBO TV draws in the last couple of years, but numbers for last Saturday's fight with Tavoris Cloud were pretty significantly down for the 48-year-old star, dropping off to 1.2 million viewers.
In his previous two HBO bouts, Hopkins did 1.8 and 1.6 million against Jean Pascal and Chad Dawson, respectively. The numbers seem to reflect the relative lack of buzz going into the fight with Cloud, too. In 2011, Hopkins' rematch with Pascal and chance to break George Foreman's record as the oldest man to ever win a title built up some real anticipation and plenty of talk. So, too, did Bernard's fight last year with Dawson.
This time, it never really seemed like this was a particularly major event. The fight did pretty well attendance-wise in Brooklyn at the Barclays Center, but just didn't capture media attention much, and the lower TV ratings are really no surprise.
Still, it's a solid HBO rating, and nothing to be ashamed of or anything. If Hopkins returns to HBO, there's every reason to think he might get those viewers back in the 1.5 million range, coming off of an impressive win rather than a dull loss to Dawson.