Bellator 149 draw 1.9M, Kimbo-Dada draw 2.5M viewers

February 22, 2016

Bellator 149 delivered huge ratings on Friday night according to Sports TV Ratings.  The event was the highest-rated cable sports show on Friday drawing an average of 1.964,000 viewers on Spike TV.  In fact, the pre- and post-fight programming featuring Kimbo Slice and Benson Henderson respectively posted huge ratings as well.

Bellator 149 was headlined by Ken Shamrock versus Royce Gracie which drew 2.4 million viewers from 11:54pm ET-11:57pm).  But everyone was talking about the Kimbo-Dada5K fight which averaged 2.5 million viewers from 11:16pm-11:30pm.

In addition, the hour and a half show preceding Bellator 149 on Spike, “Kimbo Slice: The Truth,” drew 867,000 viewers.  “Unrivaled: Benson Henderson,” which aired immediately after Bellator drew 818,000 viewers.  Both Bellator programs are among the highest-rated for shoulder programming for the organization.

The 1.964M viewers is the highest-rated Bellator event on Spike TV.  It bests June 2015’s Bellator tentpole event by 20%.

In addition per Spike press release:

-The Kimbo-Dada fight drew a 2.3 rating with men 18-34.

-Bellator 149 was the number 1 ranked telecast of the day with men 18-34 in all of television.

-It was the most watched MMA telecast on Spike in nearly 5 years 3/26/11.

Payout Perspective:

Kimbo Slice is ratings.

We should have more of a breakdown on the event in the coming days.  Despite the “freakshow” quality of the event, Bellator got its ratings.  3 of the top 6 cable sports programs on Friday night were Bellator on Spike TV.  But, the ratings reflect the fact that promotion and known names are what drives the Bellator model.  Kimbo, Shamrock and Gracie were the top draws when in reality they should not be fighting.  But, the promotion for this fight (including the pieces involving Dada) made you excited to see these fights regardless of the reality of the outcome.  The ratings tell Spike execs that the formula works and we’ll see more of it.

15 Responses to “Bellator 149 draw 1.9M, Kimbo-Dada draw 2.5M viewers”

  1. E Tops on February 22nd, 2016 3:49 PM

    Great move to put Henderson special right after the show. Smart move by Bellator.

  2. Diego on February 22nd, 2016 4:07 PM

    Pretty much the only smart move. But yeah.

  3. jf on February 22nd, 2016 4:10 PM

    Seriously, they have to filter those bums and grandpas out. Having past prime fighters like Rampage, Wanderlei or even Tito is one thing, having Hobo 5000 and 52 y old fighting and for all purpose dying of heart attacks is too much.

  4. d on February 22nd, 2016 5:06 PM

    Unbelievable how well they can draw with has beens and embarrassing fights.

  5. tops E on February 23rd, 2016 1:17 AM

    Good for Bellator!!! Hahaha bad for the UFC….it shows Name fighters can get viewers not just the brand o oh ….a shift in the mma world…heard mcgregor wants to co promote hahaha

  6. Cutch on February 23rd, 2016 4:47 AM

    McGregor said it’s nonsence, the co-protion stuff, he just wants a bigger piece of the pie.

    They probably wouldn’t have gotten as big of ratings had they split the 2 main events up, I personally would have had a Title fight as the main event and Royce-Shamrock 3 as the co-main event

    Same with the Kimbo-Dafa 5000 fight, have it co-headline a title figjt and hope the casual fans stick around for the main event.

  7. Cutch on February 23rd, 2016 4:57 AM

    Tops Ihought you hated MMA, why are you liking big ratings from an MMA company? Or I take it you just hate the UFC and Dana?

    Pride died nearly 10 years ago, maybe time you got over it, instead of crying about what the UFC and blindly supporting every company besides the UFC.
    The Siperbowl did bigger Noth American ratings in one nigjt than Boxing & MMA have did in the last 10 yeard hahaha

  8. tops E on February 23rd, 2016 2:49 PM

    Did the siperbowl do big numbers globally? Hahahaha

  9. tops E on February 23rd, 2016 2:50 PM

    Nfl is north america only(number 1)….boxing is global

  10. Teep on February 23rd, 2016 5:27 PM

    Fantastic job by Mr Coker. Fans love a spectacle.

    It’s ok for MMA to be entertaining, and over the top. That’s what put this great sport on the map. Giving us something to talk about, and even laugh at.

    The UFC will up their game, to reclaim momentum, and every fan wins, whoever they prefer to watch. 2016 will be the best year for MMA ever.

  11. Teep on February 23rd, 2016 5:29 PM

    Also, I prefer MMA but boxing and kickboxing ROCK. Combat sports are the BEST sports.

  12. Papa Troll on February 23rd, 2016 7:39 PM

    Teep, you fail to realize the UFC is anything but entertaining. The UFC was created as a platform to promote the most overrated thing in competitive sports since Mohammad Ali, namely BJJ. Then it was bought by White and company and turned into a shameless marketing machine focused on making money.

    The UFC is too pretentious to be entertaining. MMA itself is too ritualistic to be a genuine competitive sport. It’s a rather limited competitive sport. It can be entertaining but the UFC is the opposite of entertaining. When the head honchos are too busy squeezing as much money as possible out of deals, there is no time left to invest in entertainment.

    UFC fighters can’t even wear the clothes they want. How can they be entertaining when they can’t even talk about the UFC?

  13. d on February 23rd, 2016 9:43 PM

    The NFL does more revenue than any sport globally by far. It isn’t even close. This is never a subject that should be even brought up in comparison.

  14. The Greatest on February 25th, 2016 6:00 AM

    Dont know why people get excited to see Kimbo.

  15. d on February 25th, 2016 6:27 AM

    Kimbo Slice on Spiketv….2m viewers, PBC….500k.

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