Earlier this month (Sat. November 4, 2017) former UFC welterweight king Georges St-Pierre made his Octagon return to make his 185-pound debut, challenging Michael Bisping for the division’s title.
“GSP” ended up winning the bout via third round submission; after unleashing a hellacious shot to “The Count’s” head that would knock him down, before the Canadian locked in a rear-naked choke that would render the Englishmen unconscious. Some mixed martial arts (MMA) fans expected the PPV buys to do rather well, while others were skeptical about St-Pierre’s draw power to the new breed of fight fans since he has been away for so long.
Those notions can finally be laid to rest, as MMA Fighting’s Dave Meltzer reports “Rush’s” return against Bisping reeled in about 875,000 buys in North America. That’s the UFC’s highest number since Ronda Rousey vs. Amanda Nunes back in December of 2017. If fans remember, UFC President Dana White announced shortly after UFC 217 that the show was trending to blow past 1 million buys.
The 875,000 number does not include internet buys or purchases from Australia, where it’s said the event did exceptionally well also. Per Dana White, the event also broke the Canadian record for the biggest PPV event ever previously held by Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather.
As it pertains to cards that he has served as the true headliner in, this would be the second-highest of St-Pierre’s career. His 2013 successful welterweight title defense over rival Nick Diaz still ranks first.