In the considerable shadow of the Olympics, Saturday night's UFC on FOX 4 was never expected to win the evening's ratings battle. The fight card produced a considerable amount of action and drama, but in the end, the ratings reflected the difficulty of stacking up against a powerhouse sports property.
The event, highlights by a main event pitting former UFC light-heavyweight champion Mauricio "Shogun" Rua against Brandon Vera, saw its highest ratings in the last half-hour, when approximately 2.36 million tuned in for the showcase fight.
The preliminary ratings were released by TV By The Numbers, which noted that final ratings for the night's broadcast were not available.
The event, which kicked off at 8 p.m. ET, 5 p.m. ET, started off with 1.91 million viewers at the start time, and increased every half-hour, going from 2.1 million to 2.2 million to 2.36 million for the 9:30-10 pm block. The event also went over its two-hour window, which should also likely increase the final ratings number.
Final ratings can also be affected even greater by the fact that the event was on live.
The three-hour block of the Olympics, broadcast on NBC drew an average of 26.08 million viewers and a 7.8 rating among viewers aged 18 to 49.
FOX finished second in the valued demographic with a 1.1 rating.
The last UFC on FOX special, which aired in May, drew 2.4 million viewers for an event that featured lightweights Nate Diaz and Jim Miller in the main event. The first two UFC on FOX events drew 5.7 million and 4.7 million viewers, respectively.