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UFC 162 prelims beat average, but post-match coverage blows up

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

The ratings for Saturday's UFC 162 programming before and after the pay-per-view seemed to echo the feelings going in. The show itself had above average interest coming in, but created tremendous talk coming out because of Anderson Silva's winning streak ending at the hands of Chris Weidman.

The prelims on FX did a 0.96 rating and 1,363,000 viewers, a number slightly above the 1.3 million average for FX prelims before pay-per-view shows. That's good considering summer months are a tougher time to draw numbers. It was up 41 percent from the unusually low 968,000 viewers for the UFC 161 prelims, but that was also a show with far less interest.

FX won its time slot not only on cable, but it's 1.19 rating in the Male 18-34 time slot beat all network programming as well between 8 and 10 p.m. The 1.46 in Males 18-49 saw FX finish second in that time slot among both cable and network programming.

To no surprise, the post-fight show on Fuel, which did a 0.42 rating and 214,000 viewers, was the ninth-highest rated show in the station's history. It did more than four times the 2012 average for post-fight shows on Fuel and was the highest ever after a pay-per-view show. It beat the Jon Jones vs. Chael Sonnen post-fight show on April
27, the previous high-mark for post-pay-per-view coverage, by 35 percent.

In the key Male 18-49 demo, it was up 379 percent from the 2012 average. Most impressively, Fuel's 0.67 rating in the Male 18-49 demographic was the highest rated show among all shows both cable and network between 1
a.m. and 2 a.m. It's one thing for an FX show to beat everything on television in a demo, but for a Fuel show, that's nearly uncharted waters.

The post-fight ratings echo "after the fact" results that included UFC setting its all-time record for web viewership of a post-fight press conference by almost four times the prior record, and the name Anderson Silva being searched for by more than 2 million people on Saturday and Sunday, roughly four times the search level that a UFC
major show typically receives.

The weigh-ins on Friday did a 0.27 rating and 119,000 viewers, which was triple the rating and nearly triple the viewers of the 2012 average for UFC weigh-ins. It was the fourth most-watched weigh-ins thus far on Fuel.

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