Both the UFC and Fox put a very strong marketing push behind last Friday’s UFC on Fox 5 card.
Apparently it paid off.
According to Yahoo! Sports, the highly touted event brought in an average of 4.4 million viewers, with a 2.5 household ratings and a 4 share overall. More importantly, though, it won the night in the specific demographic categories that the UFC targets: males 18-34, males 18-49, adults 18-34 and adults 18-49.
Interestingly enough, the ratings progressively increased as the night went on. The first bout on the main card, Matt Brown versus Mike Swick, drew an average of 3.6 million viewers. The next one, Rory MacDonald versus B.J. Penn, drew 4.3 million viewers. Alex Gustafsson versus Mauricio “Shogun” Rua pulled in 4.5 million viewers. And, finally, the main event between Nate Diaz and Benson Henderson drew an average of 5.7 million viewers (!).
It’s worth pointing out that, really, aside from Brown versus Swick, none of these fights were expected to finish early. Henderson, Shogun and MacDonald/Penn had been in some absolute wars – there was a very good shot that those fights would end via judge’s decision. The fact that people still tuned in despite of that says a lot.
"There are always going to be older people home watching TV on a Saturday night," White told Yahoo! Sports. "But the advertisers are trying to reach that demo and we just dominated it. That was a huge night for us."
(Kudos Yahoo! Sports)