UFC on Fox Sports Ratings (11/11 – 11/17)

November 22, 2013

MMAPayout will be covering in detail the FOX – UFC  TV deal, quarterly and weekly, in order to analyze the performance of both properties throughout the lifespan of the TV deal.  In this week’s edition, we will be looking at the UFC on FOX sports network ratings for the week of 11/11 – 11/17.



UFC on Fox Sports 1 Wednesday Night Block (11/13):
– The Ultimate Fighter (repeat): 130,000 viewers
– The Ultimate Fighter (new episode): 561,000 viewers

UFC on Fox Sports 1 Saturday (11/16):
– UFC 167: GSP vs Hendricks Prelims: 998,000 viewers (prelim record).
– UFC 167: GSP vs Hendricks Post Fight Coverage: 249,000 viewers.

Other Key Programming Notes :
– UFC 167: GSP vs Hendricks Live Weigh-ins (11/15) on FS2 drew 21,000 viewers.
– UFC Presents Mark Hunt (11/17) on FS1 drew 27,000 viewers and 51,000 on FS2 for the replay.
– UFC Tonight (11/13) on FS2 drew 29,000 viewers (aired on FS2 due to CBB game on FS1).
– Ultimate Insider (11/17) on FS1 drew 48,000 viewers (usually airs on Wednesday block).
– UFC 167 Primetime Ep. 3 (11/11) on FS1 drew 95,000 viewers.

Note: UFC’s regular Wednesday night block programming did not air on FS1 due to the Big East college basketball game, which drew 67,000 viewers. The college basketball game was the lead in to the shortened UFC programming block this week.


 Fox Sports 1 & 2 Weekly Totals:
– Fox Sports 1 Primetime Viewership: 289,000 (last week: 630,000)
– Fox Sports 2 Primetime Viewership: 9,000 (last week: 16,000)

Ratings provided by Nielsen TV Ratings & Fox Sports.


Payout Perspective:

Two weeks ago, Fox Sports 1’s achieved its most successful week in terms of viewership. This week, without having two UFC events and a blockbuster college football game all on the same week, differed greatly.  The primetime viewership for FS1 fell from 630,000 to 289,000 viewers, or 54%.  FS2 also had a dramatic decline from 16,000 to 9,00, or 43%. Of course, this is not unusual for a sports network, where it is not enough to have the license to a certain sport or league, but also airing the games/fights that people want to watch.

Other key notes from last week was the UFC 167 Primetime special, which wrapped up the three part series by drawing 95K viewers.  That puts the average viewership for the series at 97,000 viewers.  With costs estimated between $1-2M per primetime special, you have to wonder whether drawing an average of 100,000 viewers is enough.  The purpose of  the Primetime special, back when it was on Spike TV anyways, was to convert viewers into PPV buyers.  Spike TV’s Primetime’s would typically be in the 500K-1M range. With a mere 100,000 viewers on average, and a big portion being hard-core fans who are already ordering the event, the ROI (return on investment) should be carefully analyzed going forward.  UFC 168 next month is also set to have a three-part primetime special.

In more positive news, the UFC 167 prelims viewership of 998,000 was huge success for the UFC on FS1, considering the networks limitations.  It now stands as the second most watched UFC program on FS1 since the August 17th debut on the network.  This was a good sign for the event as a whole, and could shine some light on the PPV buy projections, though the two have shown in the past not to have a direct correlation.

2 Responses to “UFC on Fox Sports Ratings (11/11 – 11/17)”

  1. BrainSmasher on November 22nd, 2013 4:01 PM

    Nice info! Thanks for putting these numbers together and kind of wrap each week up.

  2. Jose Mendoza on November 22nd, 2013 5:47 PM

    Glad you are enjoying the segment BS.

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