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Fedor cracks top 10

GST2010-05-13 14:06:51 +0000 #1

Fedor Emelianenko's victory over Brett Rogers last Saturday is now the ninth most watched fight in U.S. mixed martial arts history.

The Strikeforce headliner and final fight of CBS' fourth over-the-air MMA broadcast drew 5.46 million viewers between 11:00 and 11:15 p.m., according to CBS figures released Tuesday.

The number was a marked increase from the previous time slot of 10:30 p.m. to 11:00 p.m., which drew 4.01 million viewers.

"You typically see that, we saw that in the other fights," said Kelly Kahl, Senior Executive Vice President of CBS Primetime. "First and foremost, there was huge interest in Fedor, and secondly, when it’s 11:00 and people are flipping around, it’s not surprising they might have joined in."

Kahl added that the increase could have coincided with the conclusion of Spike TV's broadcast of UFC Main Events, which featured the last four UFC pay-per-view headliners from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday night.

Amongst male viewers, the final timeslot posted triple-digit increases in viewership with a 3.1 rating for men 18-34, a 3.3 rating for men 18-49, and a 3.5 rating for men 25-54.

Thirty-one percent of the Saturday audience was comprised of 18-34 adults.

Overall adult viewership fared poorer, with a 2.4 rating in adults 18-34, a 2.5 rating in adults 18-49, and a 2.5 rating in adults 25-54.

However, the broadcast retained its lead over college football with healthy margins in the much-coveted young demographics.

The complete broadcast of Fedor vs. Rogers, which concluded at 11:24 p.m., drew an average of 4.04 million viewers.

Of the four MMA broadcasts on CBS, Fedor vs. Rogers ranks third, led by EliteXC’s “Primetime,” which averaged 4.85 million viewers, and “Heat,” which drew 4.56 million viewers. Both were bolstered by the presence of breakout stars Kimbo Slice and Gina Carano. CBS’ July 2008 broadcast of Elite XC’s “Unfinished Business” ranked last with an average of 2:57 million viewers.

Kahl said the numbers were encouraging when factoring in the relative obscurity of Emelianenko to American audiences.

“I think its impressive we got 5 and a half million viewers to see a guy that to a good part of the country was an unknown,” he said. “The young male demos speak to MMA’a increasing popularity. To go toe-to-toe with college football says something about the growth pattern of MMA.”

The most watched fight in US MMA history remains Kimbo Slice vs. James Thompson, which attracted 7.28 million viewers on May 31, 2008.


It looks like the UFC's counter programming may have actually helped direct traffic to Fedor's fight and thats a pleasant surprise for Strikeforce. Fedor has finally been exposed to the American public on a huge scale. Now Strikeforce/CBS need to work out a deal with a major sponsor like Coors or Ford just like what Zuffa/Spike have done with Harley and Budweiser. Coker must be loving his partnership with Fedor and M-1 right about now.

RJ3162010-05-13 14:12:02 +0000 #2
It's still embarrassing that Kimbo-Thompson is first.I hope UFC can get a TV deal and shatter that BS
Discipline2010-05-13 14:23:45 +0000 #3
yes this is most definately a good thing! with minimal recognition until now and still pulling those numbers this could turn into somehting big. hopefully.
Discipline2010-05-13 14:51:51 +0000 #4

Originally Posted by RJ316

It's still embarrassing that Kimbo-Thompson is first.I hope UFC can get a TV deal and shatter that BS

also very true. just goes to show that mainstreamers help out alot when it comes to stuff like that. i mean like you said how, of true (for lack of better a word) mma fans, could that be at the top spot? simply bc alot of mainstreamers wanted to see kimbo in the cage.
Glenn P2010-05-13 14:22:29 +0000 #5
Nice work by Dana having his UFC fights push folks over to Strikeforce!
Discipline2010-05-13 15:17:30 +0000 #6
lol yea but i think it could be good just for the competitive aspect. i think ittl puch both orgs now to broadcast as much as possible. who knows though.



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