Last night’s (Sat., January 27, 2018 ) UFC on FOX 27 from the Spectrum Center in Charlotte, North Carolina, was low on star power, and the overnight ratings would seem to reflect that accurately.
According to a report from MMA Fighting, UFC on FOX 27 brought in 1.593,000 viewers and an 0.5 rating in the UFC’s targeted 18-49 demo. Those numbers resulted in an alarming 21-percent drop from last year’s UFC on FOX event, which featured Valentina Shevchenko submitting Julianna Pena in the main event, and a lofty 35 percent dropoff from the same show two years ago, where Anthony “Rumble” Johnson submitted Ryan Bader in the show’s headliner.
The figure breaks the record low for a FOX overnight rating that was previously held by last July’s UFC on FOX 22, where Chris Weidman submitted Kelvin Gastelum in the main event.
The figures aren’t a big surprise considering the lack of true top-level personalities on the card, which featured some strong fights and finishes but only Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, who stopped Derek Brunson in the main event. The Brazilian grappling expert, who is only now beginning to speak English on the mic consistently, isn’t exactly a mainstream star just yet. Also as an example, the event featured Andre Fili vs. Dennis Bermudez in a featherweight co-main event, a solid Fight Night main card bout but not exactly a deserving co-main event for a bigger FOX-aired show.
It’s important to note that the numbers will be significantly higher when West Coast viewing is factored in, but it’s also important to note that UFC on FOX 27 may not enjoy as big a boost as this would normally provide because most FOX-aired cards end after 10 p.m. and get the biggest numbers during the main event. But this main event ended in the first round, the worst that could happen for overall numbers as the increase in final numbers did not have the time required to become a vast one.
Overall, it may have been expected in some sense, yet it’s still a concerning set of circumstances as the UFC heads into the negotiating period for their new television deal this year.
It’s also shocking in some form after the Fight Night main event between Jeremy Stephens and Dooho Choi did the biggest number in almost two years just two weeks ago.