Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) kicked off its deal with FX by broadcasting a live two-hour "Prelims" special for the UFC 142: "Aldo vs. Mendes" event this past Sat., Jan. 14, 2012, from the HSBC Arena in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Well the ratings are in ... and they're not pretty.
The first episode on the new network reeled in just 880,000 viewers, which is lower than any "Prelims" special broadcast that aired on Spike TV, according to MMAWeekly.com. This in comparison to the final preliminary card broadcast on Spike at UFC 141 that drew 1.8 million viewers back on Dec. 30.
There will, of course, be a transition period as fans get used to the switch from Spike TV to FX. Both cable channels are in roughly 100 million homes but the former spent years cultivating an audience with 14 season of The Ultimate Fighter as well as countless specials and other assorted programming.
Baby steps, Maniacs.
The actual preliminary card broadcast featured four fights spread across two hours instead of the usual two and one. The action wasn't spectacular, to say the least, but it wasn't exactly dull.
Gabriel Gonzaga made a successful return to the UFC with his first round rear-naked choke submission over Ednaldo Oliveira while Mike Pyle made quick work of Ricardo Funch with a technical knockout win that took just over one minute.
The other two bouts -- Thiago Tavares vs. Sam Stout and Yuri Alcantara vs. Michihiro Omigawa -- both went to decision with Tavares and Alcantara emerging victorious unanimously in each respective bout.
For complete UFC 142: "Aldo vs. Mendes" results and a complete wrap-up of the entire weekend's action click here.