UFC 217 looks to have done big business for the promotion and that includes strong numbers for their preliminary coverage on FOX Sports.
The prelims actually had to start over on FOX Sports 2 due to a football game over-running, but even so, after the fights did begin airing on FOX Sports 1 they would go on to deliver an average of 1,276,000 viewers.
That marks a high point for the year to date on the channel for UFC Prelims, outdoing UFC 209’s prelims, which drew 1,033,000 viewers, and UFC 211’s over on the FX channel which delivered 1,184,000 viewers.
The preliminary card was fairly solid, with the ‘headliner’ of this portion of the show being a fight between James Vick and Joe Duffy, while Ovince Saint Preux Vs Corey Anderson was also notable and people were curious to see how Mickey Gall would fare against Randy Brown.
However, the strong ratings are most likely to be an indicator that people were showing an interest in the stacked PPV broadcast that it led into, promising no less than three title fights and the return of a legitimate superstar in Georges St-Pierre.
The prelim numbers bode well for the PPV figures, but we already knew they were doing well in that regard as Dana White was eager to inform the assembled press after UFC 217 that the show has likely blown past the one million sales barrier.
If so, that would easily make it the biggest selling event of what’s generally been a lackluster year for the company, aside from raking in money from the Mayweather Vs McGregor boxing match and pulling in the region of 850,000 PPV buys for UFC 214: Cormer Vs Jones II.