Ratings In for Strikeforce on Showtime, Bellator’s MTV2 Debut


Last Saturday night offered a plethora of options for MMA fans seeking action, foremost among them Strikeforce “Feijao vs. Henderson” and Bellator Fighting Championships 35. On Tuesday, ratings for both nationally televised events were made public.

Premium cable channel Showtime drew a reported average of 412,000 viewers for its 10 p.m. ET live airing of the Strikeforce card, which emanated from Nationwide Arena in Columbus, Ohio, and was headlined by Dan Henderson’s 205-pound title-winning, third-round knockout of Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante.

That figure, reported by MMAJunkie.com, marks a significant decline from Strikeforce’s last “major” event on Showtime. On Feb. 12, Antonio Silva’s upset of Fedor Emelianenko garnered an average 741,000 viewers, a record-breaking number for the organization. The “Feijao vs. Henderson” rating also fell short of Nick Diaz’s Jan. 29 welterweight title defense against Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos, which drew an average of 561,000 viewers.

At 9 p.m. ET, Bellator notched 200,000 viewers on average for its debut on new cable home MTV2. The 2-hour broadcast from the Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino in Lemoore, Calif., featured all four quarterfinals in the promotion’s fourth-season welterweight tournament.

According to industry sources, Bellator 35 provided MTV2 with boosts in several key advertising demographics. Ratings were up 83 percent among men ages 18 to 49, 80 percent among men 18-34, and 133 percent among men 25 to 34.

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