Most viewed MMA bouts of all time

by Sergio Non | source:


Butterbean says this (Friday's Moosin event in Worcester, Mass.) could be the most viewed MMA show ever, what with 5 million Poles expected to watch one of their most popular athletes," notes the latest edition of USA TODAY. But even makng the top 10 most-viewed list in the Pacific Rim or Russia, an MMA event would have to crack the 15 million mark just to get within shouting range:

During the heyday of Pride and K-1 MMA, the top-10 New Year's Eve MMA fights each drew more than 30 million viewers, led by the K-1 2003 bout between Bob Sapp and Akebono, that drew an estimated 54 million people.

Strikeforce says their November show headlined by Fedor vs. Rogers generated an audience of 25 million viewers, including 16 million in Russia.

Last year's UFC 100 drew a reported 1.6 million pay-per-view buys. UFC internal research indicates each pay-per-view sale represents an average of eight to 10 people, which suggests that at least 10.8 million saw Lesnar vs. Frank Mir in July.

The main event of EliteXC's CBS debut in May 2008, featuring Kimbo vs. James Thompson, drew an estimated 7.28 million viewers.


tags: Bob Sapp   Akebono   video   


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BigDummy site profile image  

5/20/10 5:50 PM by BigDummy

Also about that 1 rating point Mexico - 380,000 television sets.Do you mean television sets reached or television viewers reached. There is a difference between television sets reached and viewers reached. Because if it's television sets reached then you would also need to factor in the how many viewers per television set which the Neilson ratings here in the states accounts for.

BigDummy site profile image  

5/20/10 5:44 PM by BigDummy

Can you explain to me how you got 1 rating point in Mexico is 380,000 sets?Because if ratings points are determined the same way they are here in the states then they are different for different channels. Ratings points are different based on the total amount of viewers that channel reachs. At 380,000 television sets per ratings point that would only be 38,000,000 total viewers for that channel. Mexico had a population of 111,211,789 in 2009. So I'm confused on how Channel 9 would only be seen by 38 million people.So does IPOBE figure their ratings points differently than how they figure them here in the states? I'm confused on how you got the 380,000 = 1 rating point.

Bobby Lupo site profile image  

5/20/10 5:24 PM by Bobby Lupo

 I was hanging out with some guys from Russia who trained in late 2007 and none of them knew who Fedor was or that the best MMA fighter in the world was Russian. They knew who Taktarov was and when I showed the Fedor HL footage their minds were bottled. They knew the Gracies and old UFC stuff, Bas Rutten, K-1 and strangely Cage Rage

BigDummy site profile image  

5/20/10 5:14 PM by BigDummy

It was reported that UFC 100 aired live for free in Mexico and was watched by 25 million people there."The UFC has long coveted Mexico as a market because of its vast number of fight fans. Fertitta worked out a deal with Televisa, the largest media company in the Spanish-speaking world and UFC 100 was shown live for free and drew 25 million viewers.""And it was a hit, as UFC 100’s broadcast on channel 9 garnered a peak IPOBE rating of 13.30, which surpassed that of a boxing event and soccer match also airing at the same time."The question to me would be does that IPOBE rating of 13.30 actually equal 25 million? If so then you might want to adjust the order of your rankings with the updated information.

DW site profile image  

5/20/10 5:11 PM by DW

 see kids, this is why you should stay in school and pay attention during the D.A.R.E. officers presentations.

TheVicar site profile image  

5/20/10 5:10 PM by TheVicar

UFC 100 had 5 million viewers alone in Mexico."And it was a hit, as UFC 100’s broadcast on Channel 9 garnered a peak IBOPE rating of 13.30, which surpassed that of a boxing event and soccer match also airing at the same time."1 rating point in Mexico = 380,000 television sets13.30 = 5,054,000 television sets (at its peak)And that's just in Mexico, if you factor in all the countries where UFC 100 aired for free you would have really high numbers for that event.

smoogy site profile image  

5/20/10 5:07 PM by smoogy

 No, the winner is still some fight from K-1 Dynamite or PRIDE NYE in the early 2000s... Krazy Horse vs. Ken Kaneko or something goofy like that Fun fact: The average DREAM event on TBS in Golden Time still has a much larger overall viewership than the highest-rated North American MMA broadcasts

LTL site profile image  

5/20/10 4:57 PM by LTL

Seems that UG News has been posting more and more with out sauce. Wonder whats up with that?

studiocamp site profile image  

5/20/10 4:41 PM by studiocamp

lol at Kirik having to correct UG news.

MickColins site profile image  

5/20/10 4:37 PM by MickColins

 Women's basketball is more popular in Russia than MMA. Or so I read somewhere.  So Kirik is probably right.