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UFC News: UFC 208 draws unimpressive viewership numbers

24 Feb 2017, 18:10 IST
The relatively low turnout suggests the fight failed to garner significant mainstream interest

What’s the story?

The UFC hosted another pay-per-view show February 11, drawing in 874,000 viewers for the preliminaries, in a relatively low turnout that suggests the fight failed to garner significant mainstream interest, according to MMA Mania.

The show peaked at 1,046,000 viewers, who mostly tuned in to hear about Belal Muhammad’s win over Randy Brown. The 2016 average viewership for pay-per-view events on Fox Sports 1 was 1,168,000. The Holm vs. de Randamie headlined UFC 208 drew 25 percent fewer viewers than last year’s average.

The relatively low viewership rating is in contrast with Holm’s last battle against Valentina Shevchenko, which had the biggest UFC on Fox summer audience in recent history.

Holm lost the battle against Shevchenko, and she lost on Saturday night again against De Randamie in the pay-per-view tournament show. This is her third loss in a row and the first three-in-a-row in her fighting career.

In case you didn’t know…

Holm has filed an official appeal disputing the win, as she claims Randamie repeatedly struck her after the horn blew in the second and third rounds and was not penalised for it appropriately.

The heart of the matter

Her agent Lenny Fresquez described the violations as “very blatant” according to MMA Fighting, and suggested that a rematch should take place in order to settle the dispute.

The round ended 48-47, which meant any disputed point could have ended in a draw for the two women and triggered a rematch

“When the bell sounds, whenever that happens that’s just our indication to stop the round,” said longtime MFA referee Rob Hinds said to MMA Fighting.

“That’s not the signal for the exact end of the round. We need to make sure we’re in position and everything is in place to stop the action as close to that horn as possible.”


Forbes Contributor Brian Mazique called the show “the worst pay-per-view event … in recent memory,” adding that the “fights themselves were horrible.” Multiple awards were not distributed, including the Fight of the Night bonus and two Performance of the Night bonuses. Only two awards were distributed, one to a fighter who had won by decision.

What’s next?

Many bloggers have suggested the entire show was relatively lacklustre, with only 10 of 14 rounds taking place and nine fights ending by decision, along with relatively slow performances from the judges contributing to situations like the multiple-round hits De Randamie scored against Holm after the bell rang. UFC heavyweight Cain Velasquez faced similar criticism after his recently loss which, according to a Cain Velasquez biography, was also due to a hand injury.

Sportskeeda’s take

Along with the Holm vs. de Randamie battle was the co-headlining fight between male middleweight fighters Anderson Silva and Derek Brunson. Another Middleweight battle between Ronaldo Souza vs. Tim Boetsch also took place, along with light Heavyweights Glover Teixeira vs. Jared Cannonier and lightweights Dustin Poirier vs. Jim Miller.

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