PFL 8 draws 144,000 viewers

October 24, 2018

The Professional Fighters League playoffs this past Saturday on NBC Sports Network drew 144,000 viewers according to Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.

The 8th event this season took place in Washington, D.C. on Saturday with the winners heading to the New Year’s Eve Finals in New York for a chance at the $1 million price for each weight division.  Saturday night’s event was highlighted by welterweight Ray Cooper as he won his welterweight semifinal matchup against Handesson Ferreira via first round TKO.  Cooper will face Magomed MagomedKirmov who defeated Bojan Velickovic in the other semifinal on Saturday.

PFL 1: 116,000 viewers

PFL 2: 150,000 viewers

PFL 3: 146,000 viewers

PFL 4: 101,000 viewers

PFL 5: 112,000 viewers

PFL 6: 138,000 viewers

PFL 7: 136,000 viewers

PFL 8: 144,000 viewers

While they are not the biggest ratings, Saturdays numbers improve upon the first set of semifinals in Long Beach.   The event went unopposed from Bellator or the UFC so this likely helped the bump in viewership.

Bellator 208 draws 521,000 viewers on Paramount

October 17, 2018

Bellator 208 on Paramount Saturday night drew 521,000 viewers according to Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.  The event featured Fedor defeating Chael Sonnen in the last semi-final of the Heavyweight Grand Prix.

It was the second of back-to-back nights for the promotion.  The event also aired on DAZN.

In addition to Fedor and Sonnen, Benson Henderson defeated Saad Awad.

Payout Perspective:

Although 521,000 viewers does not seem that impressive, it is the best viewership since Bellator 199 this past May.  One might infer that there were more viewers since DAZN was an optional way to view the event.  The viewership suggests that Fedor is still a draw for many MMA fans.

ESPN Top Rank Boxing reports strongest telecast of 2018

October 16, 2018

ESPN Top Rank Boxing on Saturday night drew 2.245 million viewers according to Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily. The event was the highest-rated live boxing telecast of 2018.

Ring.tv reports that the peak of the telecast drew 2.7 million viewers.  The main event saw Terrence Crawford put away Jose Benavidez, Jr. in the 12th and final round of their fight.

It drew 1.038 million viewers in the A18-49 demo according to Nielsen.

The ratings reflect the highest rating for an ESPN Top Rank Boxing telecast since Manny Pacquiao took on Jeff Horn in the first telecast of the partnership.

Payout Perspective:

This is good news for boxing and boxing fans as we have seen an expansion of boxing viewership.  While HBO has foreclosed its time in the sport, PBC on Fox, Top Rank on ESPN and now DAZN’s latest coup of signing on Canelo Alvarez for his next fight this December shows that the sport continues to grow.  With these latest ratings, we will see if Terence Crawford can make the next step in his career: pay-per-view star.

Bellator 207 draws 416,000 viewers on Paramount Friday night

October 15, 2018

Bellator 207 on the Paramount Network Friday night drew 416,000 viewers according to Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.  It was the first of back-to-back shows on the network.

The event featured the semi-finals of the Heavyweight Grand Prix as Ryan Bader made easy work of Matt Mitrione to make his way to the finals of the tournament.

Also on the card, Sergei Kharitonov looked impressive in his KO of Roy Nelson.

Payout Perspective:

The ratings have to be a little disappointing considering this was one of the semifinals for their Heavyweight Grand Prix.  Saturday night’s event will be an interesting look to see with PFL and Top Rank Boxing on ESPN going on at the same time.

Crawford-Benavidez fight draws big ratings on ESPN

October 15, 2018

Top Rank Boxing on ESPN Saturday night drew a 1.6 metered market rating according to Nielsen which made it the highest-rated boxing telecast in 2018.  The main event which featured Terence Crawford scoring a 12th round KO of Jose Benavidez averaged a 1.8 metered market rating.

The main event was the highest-rated Top Rank bout and main event on ESPN.  The event took place in Crawford’s hometown of Omaha, Nebraska.  The main event between the two unbeatens was heated as Crawford took a swing at Benavidez at the weigh-ins.

In the co-main event, Shakur Stevenson defeated Viorel Simion via TKO in the first round.  The event drew a metered 1.3 rating according to Nielsen.

Payout Perspective:

The telecast was the second-highest rated Top Rank event on ESPN to the Manny Pacquiao-Jeff Horn fight which kicked off the Top Rank-ESPN partnership. The event went up against Bellator on Paramount and though we will not get the overall ratings until later on Monday, boxing beat MMA on Saturday night.  The question becomes whether Crawford can draw on PPV and outside of Omaha.

UFC 229 Prelims draws 1.3M viewers on FS1

October 9, 2018

The UFC 229 Prelims drew 1.3 million viewers on FS1 Saturday night according to Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.  The prefight show drew 373,000 viewers on FS1 preceding the Prelims.

The Prelims featured Sergio Pettis taking on Jussier Formiga.  Formiga won via unanimous decision.  The event drew 754,000 in the A18-49 demo.  The prefight show drew 187,000 viewers in the A18-49 demo.

Payout Perspective:

The ratings reflect the immense interest in UFC 229.  The 1.3 million viewers is the highest prelim rating for 2018.  The prefight show tied UFC 223 for second-highest this year with UFC 222 drawing 431,000 viewers.  The event was the most-anticipated this year and the prelim and pre-fight ratings reflect this.  At this time we don’t have the post-fight ratings, but I assume they will be at an all-time high based on the melee.

TUF 28 Episode 5 draws 174,000 viewers on FS1

September 27, 2018

The Ultimate Fighter 28 episode 5 drew 174,000 viewers on FS1 Wednesday night via Nielsen according to ShowBuzz Daily.

The fight of the telecast saw Michel Batista dominate Josh Parisian for a two round unanimous decision.

Episode 5 is the lowest-rated TUF 28 episode to date coming off of the highest-rated Live +SD TUF 28 episode.

Payout Perspective:

The ratings thus far reflect the lack of interest in watching this show live.  Rather, it seems to pick up its most viewers when people record it.  We shall see what becomes of the franchise when it moves to ESPN.

UFC Fight Night 137 draws 607,000 viewers, Prelims 243,000

September 25, 2018

UFC Fight Night 137 drew 607,000 viewers on FS1 Saturday night while the Prelims on FS2 drew 243,000 according to Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.

The main card featured Eryck Anders taking on Thiago Santos.  Anders was unable to continue and Santos won via TKO after Round 3.  The prelims airing on FS2 featured Charles Oliveira getting another bonus of the night for his submission of Christo Giagos.  The prelims also saw the final fight for Evan Dunham as he lost to Francisco Trinaldo via KO.

UFC Fight Night 137 took place at the Ginasio do Ibirapuera in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Payout Perspective:

The main card started on FS2 as there was an overrun from the Texas Tech-Oklahoma State football game.  As a result, the main card didn’t start on FS1 until 10:41pm ET.  The ratings for this show are better than the last time the UFC visited San Paulo in October 2017 (558,000 viewers for the main card).  The viewership is also better than the last two Fight Night shows on cable.

Bellator 205 draws 346,000 viewers on Paramount Network

September 24, 2018

Bellator MMA Live on the Paramount Network Friday night drew 346,000 viewers according to Nielsen via ShowBuzz Daily.

The event featured A.J. McKee as he defeated John Macapa in the first round of their matchup via KO.  Bellator 205 took plaice at CenturyLink Arena in Boise, Idaho.

Payout Perspective:

The event did better than Bellator 204, but its average is still down over last year. 2018 is averaging 462,000 viewers while 2017 averaged 614,000 viewers.

Top Rank Boxing on ESPN draws 662,000 viewers

September 17, 2018

Top Rank Boxing on ESPN Friday night drew 662,000 viewers and a 0.22 rating in the A18-49 demo per Nielsen.  The event took place the night before the big GGG-Canelo Alvarez fight.

The main event of the ESPN telecast saw Jose Ramirez defeat Antonio Orozco via unanimous decision in a matchup of super lightweights.  The event took place at the Save Mart Arena in Fresno, California.

This summer’s Top Rank Boxing on ESPN Ratings:

September 15 – 662,000 viewers

August 18 – 686,000 viewers

July 14 – 518,000 viewers

July 7 – 534,000 viewers

June 30 – 632,000 viewers

Payout Perspective:

The event is slightly less than last month although it was the second-highest TR on ESPN telecast this summer. The telecast served more as a reminder to the casual viewers of the big PPV event Saturday.  It also gave boxing fans a little action before the main event the next day.

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