UFC 184 did not have the most stacked preliminary card to date, but that didn’t stop it from bringing in huge broadcast numbers.
The numbers are in and the Fox Sports One televised broadcast earned a hefty average of 1,205,000 viewers viewers with a peak of 1,453,000 viewers during the Norifumi Yamamoto vs. Roman Salazar bout. The numbers may have been a bit higher had the featured preliminary bout between Mark Munoz and Roan Carniero lasted past the first round.
The ratings are a fantastic number for the UFC as the promotion continues to have an extremely successful 2015 in terms of broadcast numbers and pay-per-view buys. The UFC started off 2015 with a strong 800,000 pay-per-view buys for the Jon Jones vs. Daniel Cormier headlined UFC 182. That was just the beginning of the promotion’s TV success as they ended January by breaking ratings records with UFC Fight Night: McGregor vs. Siver. The card averaged 2.75 million viewers and peaked with 3.162 viewers during the McGregor vs. Siver bout.
While the UFC 184 preliminary card was not as much of a smash success as McGregor vs. Siver, it is only surpassed by the Fox Sports One broadcast prelims for UFC 168 which earned 1.554 million viewers and UFC 183 which brought in 1.546 million viewers.
One may point to the drawing power of UFC 184 headliner Ronda Rousey as the reason for the uptick in viewers of the preliminary card. A common trend across the Fox Sports One preliminary cards that do very well in terms of ratings is that they are usually supported by a strong pay-per-view headliner. The two prelim specials that ranked above UFC 184 are no exception to that observation. UFC 168 was headlined by the most anticipated rematch in UFC history between Chris Weidman and Anderson Silva. UFC 183 was headlined by Anderson Silva and Nick Diaz in a bout that was Silva’s first in over a year after viciously breaking his leg.
This could signal to the UFC that Rousey should not be a “co-main event” attraction and has the ability to headline cards on a regular basis. Early trends show that UFC 184 did very well on pay-per-view and that is usually the case when the preliminary card does strong ratings on Fox Sports One.
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