January 4, 2017
World Series of Fighting drew
941,000 951,000 on NBC Saturday afternoon according to Nielsen. The rating makes it the highest-rated televised WSOF event ever.
The preliminaries on NBC Sports Network drew 71,000 viewers per Sports TV Ratings. The prelims aired from 11:30-1pm PT. The main card aired on NBC from 1-3pm PT.
Notably, the WSOF event took place during the first NCAA College Football semifinal at the Peach Bowl between Washington and Alabama. The game drew 18,397 million viewers on ESPN per Sports TV Ratings.
Also of note, the UFC 207 PPV post-fight replay on FS1 drew 76,000 viewers at 3-4am PT.
The Saturday event bests the WSOF’s last time on NBC when it drew 741,000 for WSOF 11 on July 5, 2014. This past Saturday’s event, which took place in New York, featured Jake Shields-Jon Fitch and Justin Gaethje-Luiz Firmino. Considering WSOF was up against one of the national semifinals for college football, reaching close to 1 million viewers is a success. Of course, the question of whether the WSOF can remain afloat in 2017 is another question.
December 23, 2016
The World Series of Fighting will cap off its year with a show on New Year’s Eve in New York. However, there might be cause for concern for the organization as legal problems persist.
3 new lawsuits were filed in Nevada this year which call into question the financial stability of the company. The lawsuits reveal the fact that the company has internal issues with the people that run it and the people that fund it. Based on the information gathered from the lawsuits, the people investing and claiming ownership (even a small %) are not the most professional people you may know. You may recall a lawsuit in 2015 saw issues with loans and an assignment of rights for use internationally. The new lawsuits see similar problems with loans to keep the organization afloat.
In addition to the legal troubles, WSOF cancelled two events in order to bolster its New Year’s Eve show in New York. WSOF opened an office in New York last year and supported the push to legalize professional MMA in the state so it makes sense that they want a show in the state by year’s end. But a New Year’s Eve show conflicts with the College Bowl Playoffs on television.
Notwithstanding what may happen on its New Year’s show, the ratings for WSOF on NBC Sports Network are slightly behind 2015’s average of 189,000 viewers.
Will WSOF survive its legal and financial woes in 2017 and continue through the year into 2018?
October 18, 2016
The World Series of Fighting announced a New Year’s Eve show in New York which will feature a trio of main events that will be broadcast on NBC Sports and on NBC the afternoon of December 31st.
Justin Gaethje will defend his lightweight title against Joao Zeferino. Jon Fitch will face Jake Shields and Marlon Moraes will defend his bantamweight title against an opponent yet to be named.
The event will be live on NBCSN from 3pm-4pm ET and the rest of the show will be on NBC from 4pm-6pm ET. It will be the second time that the WSOF will be on NBC Sports Network. The event will take place at The Theater at Madison Square Garden.
In order to have this event, the WSOF cancelled two preceding events.
The event will be great, but there is a glaring typo on the WSOF web site.
The show is a big one for the organization and the NBC exposure should help it. Then again, a New Year’s Eve show might not garner as many fans as you might think with people preparing for festivities later that night. Last year, SpikeTV featured “Breakfast with Fedor” with tape delayed fights from the Rizin show in Japan. It drew only 141,000 viewers and peaked at 271,000. One would think that being on NBC should grab more viewers despite competing with college football bowls.
October 10, 2016
World Series of Fighting 33 drew 146,000 viewers on Friday night on NBC Sports Network according to Sports TV Ratings.
In addition, it drew 51,000 viewers in the Adult 18-49 demo. The event featured David Branch and Vinny Magalhaes with Branch earning the win. The event aired from 11:00pm-2:00am ET.
The late night event for east coast viewers probably led to the decline in ratings. Aside from WSOF 31, this past Friday’s event was the lowest of the year.
August 2, 2016
World Series of Fighting 32 drew an average of 250,000 viewers on NBC Sports Network per Sports TV Ratings. The event reflects a 50% increase in viewership from WSOF 31.
The event featured the Fodor brothers in a main event that had to be uncomfortable for some. Regardless, it was the best rating in a year. WSOF 22 last August drew 254,000 viewers.
To put the numbers in perspective in comparison to WSOF 31 in June. That event was a Friday night card opposite Bellator on Spike TV. Per Sport TV Ratings, the event drew 103,000 viewers in the adult 18-49 demo.
June 20, 2016
World Series of Fighting 31 drew just 126,000 viewers on NBC Sports Network Friday night per Sports TV Ratings. It was the second-lowest viewership ever for the organization.
The televised event went up against Bellator 156 on Spike TV Friday night. Bellator did not fare well in ratings either as it drew 482,000 viewers which was a decline since last month.
In the main event, Blagoy Ivanov defeated Josh Copeland in a battle of heavyweights.
Per Sports TV Ratings, the event (9-11:39pm ET) drew 48,000 viewers in the adult 18-49 demo. An immediate replay of the event (11:39pm-2:17am ET) drew another 88,00 total and 33,000 in the adult 18-49 demo.
Not since WSOF 7 has the company drew less in terms of viewership. Up against Bellator, it was a bad night for a live event.
April 5, 2016
World Series of Fighting 30 drew an average viewership of 158,000 on NBC Sports Network on Saturday night according to Sports TV Ratings.
The ratings reflect a drop from the March show. However, this event aired later at night for the east coast as it had an 8:30PT start time on NBC Sports Network and did not end until past 10:30PT (1:30amET). The event featured David Branch defending his middleweight title against Clifford Starks. It also saw Jon Fitch win the vacant WSOF welterweight championship.
|2016 WSOF Ratings|
The late start was the likely reason for the decrease in ratings. While the NCAA had its two national semifinal games on television, it did not come into opposition with the WSOF event.
March 15, 2016
World Series of Fighting 29 on NBC Sports Network Saturday night drew 208,000 viewers per Sports TV Ratings. The rating reflects a 23 percent boost from last month’s WSOF 28
Notably, the live event which aired from 10-12pm ET drew 88,000 in the adult 18-49 demo.
In an immediate replay, the event which featured Justin Gaethje taking out Brian Foster drew an additional 108,000 viewers. It drew another 58,000 in the adult 18-49 demo.
WSOF events in 2016
WSOF 27: 211,000
WSOF 28: 161,000
WSOF 29: 208,000
On a weekend where there was no major MMA or boxing event on the calendar except WSOF, the promotion improved upon last month’s ratings. Yet, it is still behind the pace from the first 3 WSOF shows in 2015 as those shows averaged 216,000 viewers while this year the first 3 shows have yielded an average of 194,000.
February 23, 2016
World Series of Fighting 28 on the NBC Sports Network Saturday night drew an average viewership of 161,000 viewers per Nielsen. The event Saturday night is down 24 percent from WSOF 27.
The event featured Marlon Moraes defend his Bantamweight Championship against Joseph Barajas. Moraes won handily.
2016 WSOF Events
WSOF 27 – 211,000
WSOF 28 – 161,000
Where the event was held made more news than the actual fights. The ratings are off from last month which may be due to the amount of college basketball on cable as well as going up against Bellator and UFC the same weekend.
January 26, 2016
The World Series of Fighting 27 drew 213,000 viewers on Friday night on NBC Sports Network according to Sports TV Ratings. The immediate replay drew 111,000 viewers.
WSOF 27 featured Caros Fodor facing Luiz Firmino in the main event. Firmino scored the upset over Fodor with a 3 round unanimous decision.
The Friday night ratings reflect a 24% increase from the company’s last event on NBCSN in December 2015. The event aired 10pm-12am and then the replay ran from 12am-2am.
The NBA game between Indiana and Golden State on ESPN won the time slot with slightly over 2 million viewers between 10:35pm and 1:00am ET.
A promising start to the year for WSOF. 213,000 viewers does not seem much but take a look at the WSOF track record and it is a good showing for a card with a lot of talent many have not heard of unless you follow WSOF. The 2015 NBCSN average for WSOF programming was 189,000 viewers.