UFC on Fox 8 showcased a flyweight title fight and two of the top welterweights in the world battling it out, but the ratings for the show appear to be some of the lowest in the series history.
The card was always a bit of a gamble, because while there was a championship belt up for grabs, the flyweight division is still establishing itself after entering the UFC just over a year ago in 2012. Add to that the lack of star power on the undercard, along with no NFL games taking place on Fox to advertise the show, and UFC on Fox 8 was already behind the eight ball in terms of ratings expectations.
The good news is it still won the night in terms of the coveted 18-49-year-old market. But the numbers, while still rudimentary, tell a story of the lowest ratings in UFC on Fox history.
According to a report from TV by the Numbers, an industry leader in ratings reports, the UFC on Fox 8 show drew 2.04 million viewers.
Now, it has to be noted that any time there is a live event, the ratings will always trend up from the initial numbers because of the extended time of the show (these ratings only reflect 8 p.m. to 10 p.m., when the card was scheduled) and because of same-day replay, which also adds to total viewers for a show.
UFC on Fox 8 still beat out all of the competition in the coveted 18-49 demographic (.9 rating), but it dropped nearly 40 percent from the numbers garnered for the UFC on Fox 7 show in April (1.5 rating in the 18-49 demographic).
While the UFC on Fox 8 show is currently the lowest in the history of the partnership between the promotion and the broadcast network, once the final numbers come in, it will likely land right in line with two other UFC on Fox shows that took place during or near summer.
UFC on Fox 3, which featured Nate Diaz versus Jim Miller in the main event, drew an audience of 2.4 million viewers, according to MMAWeekly.com. UFC on Fox 4 did almost exactly the same, although it was slightly higher in overall numbers, per MMAWeekly.com (via Yahoo! Sports). UFC on Fox 3 took place in May 2012, while UFC on Fox 4 was in August 2012.
Just like the UFC on Fox 8 show, neither had the support of NFL advertising to help push the show prior to it taking place.
Once the final numbers for UFC on Fox 8 are released by the Nielsen ratings system, it's likely they will be almost exactly the same or slightly lower than UFC on Fox 3 and UFC on Fox 4.
Damon Martin is a Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report
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