TUF 26 Finale draws 501,000 on FS1; Prelims draw 361,000

December 4, 2017

The Ultimate Fighter 26 drew 501,000 viewers on FS1 Friday night.  The prelims which preceded the event drew 361,000 viewers.

The TUF 26 pre-fight show drew 148,000 at 7pm ET on FS1.  The one-hour precursor to the fights drew 0.06 in the A18-49 demo.  The prelims drew 0.12 in the A18-49 demo starting at 8pm ET.  The main card drew 0.21 in the A18-49 demo starting at 10pm ET.

The main card featured Nicco Monsanto and Roxanne Modafferi fight for the inaugural women’s Flyweight title.  Monsanto earned the victory.

In the final bout of the prelims, Montana De La Rosa defeated Christina Marks.

Payout Perspective:

On a night when it went up against Bellator and the Pac 12 College Football Championship game on ESPN, TUF 26’s main card fared well.  Notably, Bellator drew just 439,000 viewers in the 9pm ET time slot.  The A18-49 demo increased steadily throughout the night and so did the viewership.  Friday’s ratings pales in comparison to last December TUF 24 which featured Demetrious Johnson defending his title against Tim Elliott.  The event drew over 1 million viewers.  This year did not feature a top name like Mighty Mouse and thus did not do as well.

TUF 26 Episode 12 draws 220,000 viewers on FS1

November 30, 2017

The season finale of season 26 of The Ultimate Fighter drew 220,000 viewers on FS1 Wednesday night. It’s one of the lowest (if not the lowest) live + SD rating for the TUF franchise.

According to ShowBuzz Daily, it drew 0.09 in the A18-49 demo.

In the last fight of the season to determine who will fight in the live Finale on Friday night Sijara Eubanks defeated Roxanne Modafferi to earn her right to the TUF Finale.  It would have meant two of the lowest seeds (Nicco Montano is the other finalist) in the house squaring off for the inaugural Flyweight title.  However, due to weight cutting issues, Eubanks was forced to pull out and Modafferi was inserted into the final slot.

Payout Perspective:

Wednesday night’s show was not in the usual 10pm ET time slot as the replay of episode 11 aired and the new episode aired in the 11pm ET slot.  The ratings for this season were quite low with an average of 237,000 viewers for live viewership and the lowest rating ever for a first-run episode of TUF.  The fall TUF season is a hard sell due to Major League Baseball’s postseason as the show takes a week or so off due to conflicts and/or the World Series.  DVR ratings have helped bolster the viewership by almost 40 to 50% of the live viewing each week.

TUF 26 Episode 11 draws 273,000 viewers on FS1

November 27, 2017

The Ultimate Fighter 26 Episode 11 drew 273,000 viewers last Wednesday  on FS1 per Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.

According to ShowBuzz Daily, it drew 0.09 in the Adult 18-49 category.  It was the penultimate episode of the season with Barb Honchak taking on Nicco Montano one semifinal.  The 14th seed Montano scored another upset as she defeated the 2nd seeded Honchak.  Montano will face the winner of the Roxanne Modafferi-Sijara Eubanks fight airing on the season finale of TUF 26.

Payout Perspective:

We will update the DVR numbers from the last couple weeks later this week.  The Wednesday before Thanksgiving is usually a tough time for viewership although TUF rebounds from an all-time low last week of 158,000 viewers.  Last year, TUF 24’s 11th episode which also took place on the Wednesday before Thanksgiving drew 304,000 viewers.  The night belonged to the NBA with the two games on ESPN drawing the top two spots for cable watchers.

TUF 26 Episode 10 draws low of 158,000 viewers

November 16, 2017

TUF 26 Episode 10 drew 158,000 viewers on FS1 Wednesday night according to Nielsen.  It is the lowest-rating for the TUF series.

The show featured the final quarterfinal bouts to determine the semifinals for the inaugural UFC women’s flyweight champion.  Barb Honchak defeated Rachael Ostovich in one of the quarterfinal bouts.  In the other Nicco Montano defeated Montana Stewart.

Honchak and Montana will now meet in next week’s semifinals to determine who will fight for the title at the Finale on December 1st.

The show drew only 0.06 viewers in the A18-49 demo.

Payout Perspective:

The 158,000 viewers is the lowest-rated TUF this season and overall for a first-run episode for the series.  It was ranked 150th in cable tv ratings on Wednesday night and almost did not make the cut for reported ratings on ShowBuzz Daily as it only lists the top 150 shows on a given day.  The lead-in was college basketball which did not draw that many viewers.  An Indiana-Seton Hall matchup drew just 252,000 viewers Wednesday night before TUF.

TUF 26 Episode 9 draws 239,000 viewers on FS1 Wednesday

November 10, 2017

The Ultimate Fighter 26, episode 9 drew 239,000 viewers according to Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.

The show featured two quarterfinal fights as Roxanne Modafferi stopped Emily Whitmire and Sijara Eubanks defeated DeAnna Bennett.  The episode focused on the weight-cutting of Eubanks as she struggled to make the mandatory weight while Lauren Murphy was waiting to replace her.

Payout Perspective:

The ratings are a nice rebound from last week’s low rating due in part to Game 7 of the World Series.  Still, Wednesday’s ratings is below the 242,000 season average.

TUF 26 Episode 8 draws record low of 197,000 viewers

November 2, 2017

The Ultimate Fighter 26 episode 8 drew a record low 197,000 viewers on Wednesday night on FS1 per Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.  Game 7 of the World Series was one of the factors for the low ratings.

It was the coach’s challenge on the latest episode of TUF as coaches Eddie Alvarez and Justin Gaethje went in the pool for some middle-distance swimming.  Coach Alvarez won the challenge.  In the fight of the telecast, Emily Whitmore defeated Christina Marks with an armbar.

The first run telecast was preceded by episode 7 which aired two weeks ago as last week TUF was off due to the World Series.

Payout Perspective:

Tough scheduling for TUF as it was not on last week and Game 7 of the World Series was on the same night.  Easy to see how it drew just 197,000 viewers.  We will see how much it increased in DVR ratings.

TUF 26 Episode 7 draws 316,000 viewers

October 19, 2017

The Ultimate Fighter 26 Episode 7 drew 316,000 on FS1 Wednesday night.

The fight of the telecast featured Melinda Fabian taking on Rachael Ostovich.  It was Ostovich that came out victorious.

Notably, the MLB Playoff game between the Astros and Yankees preceded TUF and scored over 5 million viewers on Fox Sports with the post-game on FS1 drawing 2.8 million.

Payout Perspective:

The good news is that this is the highest rated Live + SD this season.  The bad news is that its only 316,000 viewers.  The last two seasons of episode 7 drew 372,000 viewers.  Realistically, this is a good rating for TUF since it took last week off due to the baseball playoffs and went up against it and the first full night of NBA action.

TUF 26 Episode 6 draws 242,000 viewers

October 5, 2017

The Ultimate Fighter 26 Episode 6 drew 242,000 viewers on FS1 Wednesday night per Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.

The telecast drew 0.06 in the A18-49 demo.  In the fight of the show Gillian Roberts faced Barb Honchak.  Honchak stopped Roberts via strikes from the top.

Notably, TUF 26 outdrew an NBA Preseason Game between the Denver Nuggets and LA Lakers on NBA TV.  That game drew 144,000 viewers starting in the same time slot.

Payout Perspective:

The ratings reflect a modest rise in the ratings.  The season average through six episodes stands at 239,000 viewers which would be an all-time low thus far.  The viewership is seeing a steady increase with its DVR viewership.

TUF 26 Episode 5: 220,000 viewers

September 28, 2017

The Ultimate Fighter Episode 5 on FS1 Wednesday night drew 220,000 viewers per Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.  It brings the season average to just 238,000 viewers.

The event drew 0.07 viewers in the A18-49 demo per Nielsen.  In the fight of the telecast, Sijara Eubanks defeated Maia Stevenson as the higher seed scored an upset.

Notably, Stevenson is the spouse of TUF alum Joe Stevenson.

Payout Perspective:

The ratings are definitely down this season and on a night where there was not much else on sports-wise, the live viewership is low.  Even taking that into account, the DVR viewership is also down over the last couple seasons.

TUF 26 Episode 4 draws 381,000 in adjusted viewership, tops for season

September 28, 2017

The Ultimate Fighter 26 Episode 4 drew 381,000 viewers in DVR+3 adjusted ratings per Nielsen.

Episode 4’s overnight rating was 261,000 viewers.  It was the highest-rated episode of this season.  It is still below ratings for Episode 4 for TUF 25 (348,000; 510,000) and TUF 24 (397,000; 584,000).

Payout Perspective:

 We should have the ratings for yesterday’s episode 5 later today.  But it’s clear that this season is the least watched of the series but there is incremental signs that people are starting to watch.

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