Photo by Donald Miralle/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC vs Getty Images
Hello, smashing success? UFC on FOX, pleased to meet you.
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White optimistically declared a few months ago that the first ever foray for his promotion on network television on Nov. 12, 2011, would blow the previous ratings record for a mixed martial arts (MMA) event "out of the water."
And while at first it looked like he was wrong, when the final tally came in, he was right.
That's because SI.com brings word that the "Velasquez vs. Dos Santos" event broadcast peaked with a staggering 8.8 million viewers this past Saturday night. Here's a bit more for the SI.com report:
In minute-by-minute ratings, the 9 p.m. primetime telecast dipped to 8.741 million viewers at the 41-minute mark (the fight's conclusion), then dipped to 6 million viewers by 9:45 p.m. The telecast began with approximately 5.2 million viewers and dipped as low to approximately 4.4 million before starting its main climb around 9:36 p.m.
The total broadcast averaged 5.7 million viewers, which was considered a success without anyone getting too overly enthusiastic about it. The peak number, however, gives reason for optimism for later broadcasts.
There's no word on when exactly the next UFC on FOX event will be, though the very first UFC on FX show is being targeted for Jan. 20 in Nashville.
Anyone care to venture what those debut ratings will look like? Anticipation is surely much higher now.
UFC on FOX featured just one fight, a 64-second knockout win for Junior dos Santos, who stripped Cain Velasquez of the heavyweight crown via first round technical knockout at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.