Bellator 131 produces big ratings on SpikeTV

November 18, 2014

Bellator 131 on Saturday night drew a record 1.8 million viewers and peaked at 2 million during the Tito Ortiz-Stephan Bonnar fight per a Spike TV press release. The average for the overall event drew 1.24 million viewers.

Via Spike TV press release:

Bellator 131 knocked out the competition on Saturday, November 15 with record ratings for the emerging MMA franchise under new president Scott Coker. The Bellator 131 main event between Tito Ortiz and Stephan Bonnar (11:50pm-12:16am) drew 1.8 million viewers, peaking at 2 million, making it the most-watched and highest–rated MMA fight on cable in 2014.

The Ortiz-Bonnar fight ranks as 2nd highest-rated MMA fight telecast in all of television with Men 18-34 and Men 18-49, including broadcast, in 2014. Also, Ortiz-Bonnar ranked #2 in its timeslot in all of cable with Men 18-34 and Men 18-49.

Bellator 131 ratings breakdown:

Bellator 131 – Ortiz vs. Bonnar – 11:50p
1.8 million viewers

Bellator 131 – 10:11p
1.3 million viewers

Bellator 131 – 9p
994,000 viewers

Overall, the entire fight card (9:00-12:16) delivered 1,241,299 viewers, a record for Bellator MMA on Spike TV.

UPDATED:  More breakdown of ratings from Bellator’s big night:

King Mo-Joe Vedepo fight which started the show drew an average of 1.1M viewers (Bell in R1 9:13pm)

Mike Richman KOs Nam Phan was next and drew 1.1M viewers (Bell in R1 9:50pm *Note that the UFC 180 Prelims on FS1 peaked during this quarter hour at 771K average viewers Live +SD)

Joe Schilling KO of Melvin Manhoef drew 1.6M viewers (Bell in R1 10:11pm)

AJ Matthews KO of Kyle Bolt drew 1.3M viewers (Bell in R1 10:30pm)

Will Brooks TKO of Michael Chandler drew an average of 1.3M viewers (Bell in R1 10:59pm)

Tito Ortiz split decision of Stephan Bonnar drew 1.9M viewers (up from initial press release.  Bell in R1 was at 11:50pm)

Payout Perspective:

The event did well on social media as well per the release as it was the most tweeted Bellator event in Spike history. Despite how “pro wrestling” the Ortiz-Bonnar lead-up was, it worked. Spike and Bellator heavily promoted this event and it drew. The release obviously buried the real news which most folks want to know which was the overall viewership of the entire event – 1.24 million.  Its interesting to see the updated ratings per fight as you can the audience remained over 1 million for the fights.

It was a good night for Bellator as it was the clear winner of the night where the UFC and WSOF were options for MMA fans.

MMA Payout will have more on this. Stay tuned.

11 Responses to “Bellator 131 produces big ratings on SpikeTV”

  1. Diego on November 18th, 2014 12:39 PM

    I guess that’s why Ortiz get’s paid as much as he does. I’m surprised it did so well. I didn’t think it was a very compelling card, but that’s just me.

  2. Diego on November 18th, 2014 12:40 PM

    Now that Coker is running Bellator and Bellator is (arguably) competing with the UFC, do you think Zuffa will try to buy Bellator?

  3. Rob on November 18th, 2014 1:13 PM

    @ Diego bellator isn’t competitive yet but this was a great start. They might not be financially solvent yet so we have to wait on whether the UFC sees value in bellator. I think bellator is more valuable to the UFC as it is currently (Viacom owned than zuffa owned).
    Spike is in more households than fs1 and its also a channel that avgs. 500-700k in primetime a week. Much higher than fs1’s 150-250k. If bellator continues to grow the casual audience, that audience might seek out the best mma. That’s the role bellator needs to play 2m viewers is great but it wasn’t the greatest display of mma technique. The UFC is the only promotion that can provide the best mma. Will casual viewers care about technique or the storyline? Will they search out for a growing channel like fs1 instead of a regular in their tv diet like spike? Ratings clearly show the UFC is hurting by being on fs1 (so is mlb, NASCAR, big 12 & Pac-12 football).

  4. FightBusiness on November 18th, 2014 2:18 PM

    Bellator will absolutely catch up to the UFC inside of 5 years if meat head White remains in charge. Coker is very savy and is a nicer guy. he also pays his fighters fairly. Tito sucks balls and he got paid 300k. Could you imagine what Anderson Silva would get paid in Bellator. Competition will make the UFC better as well but its to late Coker just has a better mind.

  5. Logical on November 18th, 2014 2:27 PM

    It was a very entertaining card and it fills a void left by countless crappy UFC events. The UFC may have a monopoly when it comes to top level competition but it has spread itself so thin that every card feels like they’re just going through the motions, delivering the same watered down crap over and over again. I wasn’t a big fan of Bellator ‘pre-Scott Coker’ but what he has managed to do here is make it seem like this is truly an ‘event’, it was a breath of fresh air in what lately has been a stale MMA scene–and therefor those numbers reflect that. In the end, with more competition, only the fans win. Unless of course, the UFC buys the promotion, F**** it all up and buries it to the ground just like with PRIDE & Strikeforce.

  6. Pink Pig on November 18th, 2014 2:41 PM

    UFC is on the ropes now… they definitely gonna try and sell their shitty company soon

  7. d on November 18th, 2014 3:02 PM

    Good show by Bellator. Coker is much better than Rebney at promotion.

  8. Diego on November 19th, 2014 5:03 AM

    I think we can all agree that Bellator is in better hands under Coker, who is level headed and focuses on the business, than Rebney, whose ego led him to try to go head to head with Dana.

  9. d on November 19th, 2014 10:34 PM

    Fightbusiness, Anderson Silva would get paid a fraction of what he gets paid fighting for the UFC if he fought in Bellator. They wouldn’t be able to generate big ppv buys, thus the multi millions per fight he made with the UFC, would not be made with Bellator.

    Something you are also ignoring is that Tito Ortiz is still a big name draw. He can sell a fight very well like he did with Bonnar. Plus that was 300k up front with no other bonuses. He made at least 10x that, a number of times with the UFC.

  10. Bellator MMA Finds Huge Success Going Head-to-Head with UFC 180 on November 20th, 2014 11:00 AM

    […] Payout had a breakdown of what each fight on Bellator 131 drew. The King Mo-Vedepo fight brought in 1.1 million viewers. Richman-Phan also drew 1.1 million […]

  11. memo c on November 21st, 2014 7:26 PM

    Yeah right this guy hates on the ufc.ufc 180 might of Done bad with Pay per view buys. but that’s only in the US or Canada..how about the over 7Million watching 180 in Mexico on there cable network. Not including the rest of the WORLD.. UFC is WORLD WIDE.. bellator can’t go to Sweden and sell 30k plus in tickets

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