UFC 125 by the Numbers

January 4, 2011

Here’s a look at how UFC 125 did from a numbers standpoint (attendance, gate, ratings, and payouts). The numbers from an event typically take a little bit longer to come in, which is why we often do not post them with the Payout Perspective. Unfortunately, the PPV estimates will not be in for another few weeks.

Attendance and Gate

According to MMAJunkie Craig Borsari revealed at the post-fight press conference that the attendance was 12,688 which generated a live gate of $2,174,780.


MMAPayout has learned that Spike’s “Countdown to UFC 125” earned 407,000 average viewers in its debut on Wednesday, December 29. This isn’t a superb number, but we’ve seen less and less correlation between these countdown figures and the PPV buys as Spike has shifted to a model of frequent Countdown broadcasts during fight week. To give you a reference point, UFC 124 did 470,000 average viewers. The major difference in the PPV buyrate is likely to be the fact that 124 had three months of TUF 12 to promote the fight and 125 did not.

We have also learned that the UFC 125 Prelims on ION earned 829,000 viewers (with approximately 550,000 in the A18-49). This is a new low for a UFC Prelims broadcast as the previous was 1.1 million at UFC 118. However, I’m not surprised. The UFC announced this broadcast a week before and didn’t really get the word out as much as it probably wanted to. Moreover, there were problems on Ion’s end: the broadcast started with a black screen for the first few minutes (at least on Comcast in Oregon) and the program listing was set to 9pm PST instead of 6pm PST.

The ratings for the UFC 125 Prelims on Ion could have been better, but they could have been worse too. It’ll be interesting to see if the UFC returns to the network and how much promotion they throw behind the next set. As mentioned in the Payout Perspective, there seems to be a battle looming between Zuffa and Spike over the expiration of the UFC’s television agreement in 2011. The performance of the UFC on Ion will undoubtedly play a role in the negotiating leverage the UFC has with Spike and other networks.


MMA Weekly has received the payouts from the NSAC:



-Frankie Edgar: $102,000 (includes $51,000 win bonus) drew Gray Maynard: $52,000 (includes $26,000 win bonus)
*Both fighters were reportedly paid their win money even though fight was ruled a draw.

-Brian Stann: $42,000 (includes $21,000 win bonus) def. Chris Leben: $46,000

-Thiago Silva: $110,000 (includes $55,000 win bonus) def. Brandon Vera: $60,000

-Dong Hyun Kim: $70,000 (includes $35,000 win bonus) def. Nate Diaz: $33,000

-Clay Guida: $62,000 (includes $31,000 win bonus) def. Takanori Gomi: $50,000




-Jeremy Stephens: $36,000 (includes $18,000 win bonus) def. Marcus Davis: $31,000

-Dustin Poirier: $8,000 (includes $4,000 win bonus) def. Josh Grispi: $15,000

-Brad Tavares: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus) def. Phil Baroni: $25,000

-Diego Nunes: $20,000 (includes $10,000 win bonus) def. Mike Brown: $23,000

-Daniel Roberts: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus) def. Greg Soto: $8,000

-Jacob Volkmann: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus) def. Antonio McKee: $15,000



7 Responses to “UFC 125 by the Numbers”

  1. Tweets that mention UFC 125 by the Numbers : MMAPayout.com: The Business of MMA -- Topsy.com on January 4th, 2011 11:50 AM

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by MMA Headliner, MMA Payout. MMA Payout said: UFC 125 by the Numbers includes attendance, gate, ratings (countdown and prelim), and payouts: http://tinyurl.com/28q9v9a #MMA #UFC […]

  2. Bill Jennings on January 4th, 2011 12:49 PM

    900k viewers on ion is exceptional.

  3. Brain Smasher on January 4th, 2011 12:52 PM

    Very impressive ratings. Ion has a very low viewer base. For the UFC to travel that many viewers is in credible even more so given the lack luster nature of the card and short notice deal with Ion. Keep in mind the UFC lost MANY more viewers percentage wise when they switched over to Verses with a UFC card. To retain almost 80% is good news for their leverage against Spike and into to bring to the table for other networks.

    Also it would be interesting to see the ratings of the Ion preview show. They ran their own type of countdown show leading up to the event a few days prior. Regardless of the ratings it is clear this was a home run for Ion. They got many hours of Much highers ratings and im sure at a resonable cost. Not to mention the new found awareness of the channel by a million+ MMA fans.

  4. Nick on January 4th, 2011 1:44 PM

    I was just happy to see them on Ion. I don’t know what they expected for viewers or what they got paid for it, but it was a win for 800k fans that otherwise would have not seen those fights.

  5. Sergio on January 4th, 2011 4:40 PM

    Gotta question guys?

    I was told that both Spike n Vs had UFC/WEC counter programming during
    Ion prelims if thats true,dose anyone know what those viewer numbers were?
    How much could that have effected the Ion rating?
    Thanks for for your response!

  6. Adam Swift on January 4th, 2011 6:10 PM

    Season to date ION is averaging 1.25M viewers in primetime and 440k in 18-49 demo.

  7. daniel on January 4th, 2011 8:31 PM

    Adam — I am assuming (correct me if I am wrong) that the 1.25MM is not for Saturday only but full weeks; Saturdays tend to be the lowest rating nights for all networks. I think 829k was a good number all things considered.

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