A look back at the PPV buy rates for UFC 156 fighters
February 1, 2013
As we head into the annual Super Bowl weekend PPV, MMA Payout takes a look at the previous PPV history of the main and co-main eventers.
We start with the challenger to the Featherweight title, Frankie Edgar. For purposes of this discussion, we look at his PPV appearance since winning the Lightweight title in Abu Dhabi from B.J. Penn.
Frankie Edgar PPV Buy History
UFC 112 – v. Penn – 500K PPV Buys
UFC 118 – v. Penn II – 535K PPV Buys
UFC 125 – v. Maynard II – 260K PPV Buys
UFC 136 – v. Maynard III – 225K PPV Buys
UFC 144 – v. Henderson – 325K PPV Buys
UFC 150 – v. Henderson II – 190K PPV Buys
A look at Edgar’s last 6 opponents shows that he’s had 3 rematches. His fight history also reflects the popularity of BJ Penn as those PPVs hit 500K and 535K PPV buys respectively. What I find disappointing is UFC 136 and UFC 150. Those rematches should have received better buys considering the quality of the first matches. UFC 136 stands out because it had a good supporting undercard (Aldo-Florian and Sonnen-Stann).
Jose Aldo PPV Buy History
UFC 129 – v. Mark Hominick – 800K PPV Buys
UFC 136 – v. Kenny Florian – 225K PPV Buys
UFC 142 – v. Chad Mendes – 235K PPV Buys
Aldo transferred over from the WEC and his first UFC appearance was at UFC 129. The 800K is due in large part to the huge stadium show for the UFC which featured GSP. Thus, its not like Aldo was a PPV feature although he was a part of the co-main event (he also faced Canadian Mark Hominick). The other two shows Aldo appeared on are not strong PPV numbers (which include being on the same card as Edgar at 136). Random fact: Aldo has yet to fight in Vegas for the UFC.
Rashad Evans recent PPV Buy History
UFC 98 – v. Lyoto Machida – 635K PPV Buys
UFC 108 – v. Thiago Silva – 300K PPV Buys
UFC 114 – v. Rampage Jackson – 1.05M PPV Buys
UFC 133 – v. Tito Ortiz – 310K PPV Buys
UFC 145 – v. Jon Jones – 700K PPV Buys
We take a look back at a recent history of Rashad Evans. As you can see from his headlining fights, Evans has been a reliable PPV draw. UFC 108 was injury-plagued as Lesnar-Carwin and Anderson Silva-Vitor Belfort were scheduled to be on the card at one point or another before the event. As for 133, Ortiz was a late injury replacement.
Antonio Rogerio Nogueira recent PPV Buy History
UFC 114 – v. Jason Brilz – 1.05M PPV Buys
UFC 119 – v. Ryan Bader – 295K PPV Buys
UFC 140 – v. Tito Ortiz – 480K PPV Buys
Little Nog was on the same card as Evans when he finally got a chance at Rampage Jackson. Notably, that PPV went over 1M PPV buys. After that, his performance was memorable only for the fact that it was against Tito Ortiz on a card where Jon Jones defended his title.
Alistair Overeem UFC PPV Buy History
UFC 141 – v. Brock Lesnar – 535K PPV Buys
Antonio Silva UFC PPV Buy History
UFC 146 – v. Cain Velasquez – 560K PPV Buys
The last two co-main eventers have a limited UFC history. Alistair Overeem scored a win against Brock Lesnar in a squash. Silva was battered by Cain on a card which featured JDS v. Mir.
Numbers via MMA Payout’s Blue Book
The purpose of this exercise was to take a quick look at the PPV draws of the main event fighters. Its interesting that the UFC decided to bill Aldo-Edgar as a “superfight” without giving much billing to Evans-Little Nog or Overeem-Silva. Certainly, the UFC could be making an effort to push the Featherweight divisions. With the success of last week’s UFC on Fox event, it would make sense. Yet, its the names and the heavyweights that seem to make the PPVs. Overeem’s lone appearance on UFC PPV was against Brock Lesnar. That PPV drew 535,000. While not astronomical, its a decent figure that one would think the UFC could push with his return. Although a popular fighter, Frankie Edgar is not a draw on PPV. Jose Aldo is not either.
But, if a card with Edgar-Aldo does well, the UFC will have proved its marketing correct and the prior PPV history numbers a thing of the past. It would be a good pattern for the lighter divisions considering Mighty Mouse-Dodson hit a high of 5.2 million viewers on network television. We’ll watch and see.