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Ratings report: Bellator season finale ties for second-largest TV viewership


Thursday night's Bellator season finale tied for the second-largest audience in the company's history, as 901,000 viewers on average, saw the show headlined by Pat Curran's featherweight title defense over Shahbulat Shamhalaev.

The number tied with the Feb. 28 show, headlined by Attila Vegh's light heavyweight title win over Christian M'Pumbu, for the second-largest audience. It trailed only the season opener, on Jan. 17, which did 938,000 viewers, It was also a 26 percent increase from the previous week which featured two tournament finals.

The show, held in Atlantic City, N.J., peaked at 1,046,000 viewers for the middleweight tournament final where Doug "The Rhino" Marshall knocked out Brett Cooper in the first round. The win earns Marshall a championship against Alexander Shlemenko.

Overall, the show did a 0.64 rating in the Male 18-34 demo, the second best of the season, and an 0.7 in Males 18-49, tying the season's best mark. The show may have been helped by its pro wrestling lead-in, TNA Impact, that did 1,425,000 viewers, up nine percent from what has been its number most weeks.

The midnight Bellator replay did 328,000 viewers, which would be in its usual range.

Bellator is scheduled to run monthly events for the next few months and then go back to a weekly format in the fall.
Tuesday's Ultimate Fighter was also up from the prior weeks, doing 1,178,000 viewers for the last two quarterfinal matches of the season-long tournament. Josh Samman beat Jimmy Quinlan via first-round submission, and Uriah Hall finished Bubba McDaniel with punches in nine seconds, among the fastest finishes in UFC history.

The show did a 1.34 in Males 18-34 and 1.22 in Males 18-49.

The Ultimate Fighter reality show ends its season on April 9, with two semifinals fights. Samman faces Kelvin Gastelum, while Hall faces Dylan Andrews.

The winner of the two fights, which actually took place a few months ago, will meet live on April 13 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.

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