UFC 204’s prelims were watched by an average of 678,000 viewers on FOX Sports 1 this past Saturday night.

That sets a new low mark for UFC pay-per-view prelims this year on FS1, well down on the overall average of 1,108,000 viewers.

The show peaked with a disappointing 837,000 viewers during the fight between Damian Stasiak and Davey Grant, rather than the ‘main event’ of the prelims, which featured Iuri Alcantara Vs Brad Pickett, largely due to the fact that the latter fight was overall very quickly.

The low numbers continues a noticeable downward trend in recent weeks, with UFC Fight Night 96: Lineker Vs Dodson on October 1st bringing the lowest rating of the year so far, with only 657,000 viewers tuning in.

The most obvious reason for this is that we’ve reached the tail-end of an unusually busy spell for the UFC that saw eight events in eight weeks. That run would have continued for a further week if it hadn’t been for this coming weekend’s UFC Fight Night 97 event in Manila being cancelled after main event star BJ Penn pulled out due to a rib injury.

That feels like an oversaturated schedule and so it’s not surprising that the ratings would begin to buckle under the strain.

There will now be a three week break before the next UFC event, but that will mark the beginning of another jam-packed series of events in the run up to Christmas, with no less than nine shows crammed into a seven week period.