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UFC 184 prelims pull third-biggest rating of FOX Sports 1 era

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Pay-per-view estimates for Saturday's UFC 184 aren't in yet, but thus far all signs for the show being a success have continued to come in.

The prelims on FOX Sports 1 from 8-10 p.m. ET drew 1,205,000 viewers, the third-largest for FOX Sports 1.  This trailed only the UFC 168 (Chris Weidman vs. Anderson Silva and Rousey vs. Miesha Tate) at 1,554,000 and the UFC 183 (Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz) prelims at 1,546,000. The UFC 183 numbers benefited greatly with the Miesha Tate vs. Sara McMann fight setting FOX Sports 1 era prelims audience record, along with being the lead-in for a pay-per-view show that had strong interest.

Saturday's show was also in third place of prelim shows on FS 1 in the 18-49 demo, with 713,000 viewers.

While not always a direct correlation for the most part, strong prelim numbers usually indicate strong pay-per-view numbers. UFC 168 was UFC's most successful pay-per-view event in years. UFC 183 is currently estimated at doing about 650,000 buys, also very strong numbers.

The number could have been even higher, but the TV main event with Mark Munoz vs. Roan Carneiro only lasted 1:40, meaning much of the last half hour didn't include fighting, which would have hurt the overall average.  The peak rating was the Kid Yamamoto vs. Roman Salazar fight, even though it was the weakest fight on the card, doing 1,453,000 viewers.

Currently, the prelims on shows that involve Rousey on the pay-per-view card that air on FS 1 average 31 percent more viewers than the average of pay-per-view prelims for non-Rousey cards.

In addition, the weigh-ins on Friday drew 222,000 viewers, second-largest ever on FS 1, trailing only the UFC 168 weigh-ins, that did 275,000 viewers.

Bellator also delivered above average numbers on Friday night, for its show from the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Conn. Overall, the show averaged 872,000 viewers and 44 minutes of the top topping 1 million. The Liam McGeary light heavyweight title win over Emanuel Newton averaged 1.1 million viewers over the five rounds, peaking at 1.2 million.

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