It wasn't exactly the ideal outing for Adonis Stevenson for his debut on Showtime last Saturday night. Last year Stevenson decided to leave HBO and sign with manager Al Haymon. Many critics felt it was a move to duck the hard hitting Sergey Kovalev however Stevenson said it was an opportunity to make more money. That may be the case, but more viewers usually means more money. This could mean trouble for Adonis Stevenson. The Stevenson-Fonfara fight generated a disappointing 672k average viewers for Showtime last Saturday night. That's about what an average Showtime card has been looking like for the year 2014.
For Showtime, the number is ok. But for Stevenson it's much lower than his previous fight on HBO against Tony Bellew in Novemeber. The Stevenson-Bellew fight generated 1.3 million viewers last Thanksgiving weekend. Stevenson was a 25-1 favorite against Fonfara. Those odds could have lead to some people deciding it wasn't a good fight to tune in to. Whether or not that is the case doesn't matter. 672k veiwers is half of what he was getting on HBO and if viewers aren't tuning in to watch the fight then Showtime isn't going to pay good money to showcase him.
There is some good news though. Stevenson is likely to face Bernard Hopkins next. Hopkins is a household name that draws fans. Stevenson has the chance to be seen again and win over some fans. The fight should sell well but it's after that where Stevenson could run into some problems. All the big names in his division are fighting on HBO. Should he beat Hopkins, he is going to have a real problem trying to find someone to face that will give him the money he wants. If Haymon can't get this drama settled with his fighter's and HBO soon then the entire reason for leaving HBO to sign with Haymon may back fire on Stevenson.