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Ratings Report: Bellator falls to normal viewer levels after last week's strong showing


The semifinals of the featherweight and middleweight tournament on Thursday night in Temecula, Calif., saw Bellator drop from its best demographic numbers in company history to a more normal 741,000 viewers.

The number is slightly below the eight-week average of 795,000 viewers, and was down 18 percent from the 901,000 viewers the previous week, for a show headlined by Christian M'Pumbu's light heavyweight title loss to Attila Vegh.

The replay airing, which started at 12:22 a.m. until after 2:30 a.m., did 311,000 viewers.

Bellator's show this coming Thursday has no tournament matches from this season. It will be headlined by the long-awaited lightweight tournament final from last season, with Dave Jansen (18-2) against aggressive submission fighter 21-year-old Marcin Held (15-2). It was Held's age that prevented the fight from taking place in December. Held, who turned 21 on Jan. 18, was not allowed into the casino in Hammond, Ind., where he was cleared by the local commission to headline at, due to a law regarding entering of the casino.

Tuesday's Ultimate Fighter reality show on FX, which saw Jimmy Quinlan (3-0) of Team Sonnen beat Team Jones' top pick Clint Hester (4-2), did a 1.0 rating and 1,260,000 viewers, the third-best number of the season.

It was the highest number since the second week, and it drew strong numbers in the key demographics, doing a 1.45 in Males 18-34 and 1.27 in Males 18-49.

The fight this coming week, picked by Chael Sonnen, features Zak Cummings of Team Sonnen against Dylan Andrews of Team Jones. It is also the episode featuring the Sonnen vs. Jones coaches challenge.