UFC 203 PPV buys estimated between 425K-475K

September 19, 2016

MMA Fighting reports that UFC 203 early projections have it between 425,000-475,000 PPV buys.  The numbers would make it the best UFC PPV not featuring Conor McGregor or UFC 200 which brings up the question of whether the CM Punk experiment helped boost the buy rate.

The event’s main event featured Stipe Miocic defending his UFC heavyweight title in his hometown against Alistair Overeem.  But most people were intrigued by CM Punk’s debut against Mickey Gall.

Dave Meltzer of MMA Fighting opined that Punk probably brought in an additional 125,000-225,000 extra buys or between $3.75 million and $6.75 million.  This estimate is based on UFC 198’s PPV buy rate which registered slightly under 300,000 PPV buys.

Maybe not a good comparison, but UFC 118 which featured James Toney taking on Randy Couture drew 535,000 PPV buys.  Of course, that event featured Penn-Edgar II at a time that The Prodigy was still a very popular fighter.

Payout Perspective:

One must conclude that the uniqueness of CM Punk’s debut attributed to the buy rate.  While Miocic-Overeem is a good match-up for most hardcore MMA fans, the casual viewer was likely intrigued by the Punk debut.  Does this mean Punk should come back or was this just a one-hit wonder?  We now know Punk’s skills and I would suggest that most casual fans would now pass on Punk’s second fight.  But, the Punk experiment does seem to have paid off for the UFC.

7 Responses to “UFC 203 PPV buys estimated between 425K-475K”

  1. MMA Numbers on September 19th, 2016 4:06 PM

    The concept and pattern of “The UFC borrowing star power from the WWE” will quickly grow old on sports fans. The broader sports media will call out the UFC (if this occurs more and more) by using words such as “promotional gimmick”.
    Look what’s going on right now with the New York Mets selling Tim Tebow jerseys for $120.
    The effectiveness of bringing in a WWE star for a UFC pay-per-view will quickly erode…

  2. tops E on September 19th, 2016 7:38 PM

    Connor is bigger than ufc brand

  3. ETOPS on September 20th, 2016 2:57 AM

    Brock Lesnar was a former UFC champion and is currently a part time WWE wrestler from what I’ve understand. CM Punk left the wrestling business over 2 years ago, to say they using WWE stars as a pattern is stretching it.

    Ronda is more popular than Conor, she just fight less than him.

  4. Fight Fan on September 20th, 2016 6:21 AM

    This is the only way they can sell ppvs now by bringing in a gimmick. We’ll see what happens with the next few ppvs

  5. MMA Numbers on September 20th, 2016 9:18 AM

    Brock Lesnar and CM Punk were pay-per-view stars for the WWE before they went to UFC.
    “Gimmick” was even being used ahead of UFC 200 in regards to Lesnar (since he hadn’t fought in five years and Dana White had to borrow him from Vince McMahon).
    Lesnar tried out for the Minnesota Vikings in 2004. And ESPN gave it attention because he was a WWE star.
    ESPN gave attention to CM Punk’s loss at UFC 203 because he was a WWE star.
    I used the words “if” and “more and more”.
    If it occurs more, sports fans will roll their eyes and the broader sports media will quickly dismiss it as a “gimmick”.

  6. xfcvxzvxcvxcv on September 26th, 2016 8:28 PM

    Official ESPN:

    Conor v Eddie for the 55 title at UFC 205 [ Conor won’t have to give up 45 title either]

    Woodley vs Wonderboy co Main

  7. Combo on September 29th, 2016 12:13 PM

    UFC has been the combat sports PPV king even without WWE stars or novelties.
    Which reminds me, UFC MSG will be awesome.

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