UFC Battles NFL For Ratings on Sunday, But Not Really

Written by Tom Ngo
January 12th, 2015

UFC Conor McGregor

If you haven’t noticed in the handful of UFC Fight Night 59 commercials that have aired during the NFL on FOX playoffs, Conor McGregor (pictured) is MMA’s next coming. At least that’s what the UFC is aggressively shoving down the general public’s throats.

By sharing the same key demographics as the NFL, the UFC is hoping it’s latest superstar can piggyback off Sunday’s two NFL conference championship games and help them score massive TV ratings.

FOX kicks off the action at 3:05PM ET/12:05PM PT when the Green Bay Packers travel to Seattle to take on the Seahawks for the right to go the the Super Bowl. The game should go for roughly three hours, which then leaves fans with the choice of either switching to CBS to catch the New England Patriots hosting the Indianapolis Colts at 6:40PM ET/3:40PM PT or the less likely scenario, streaming the first two UFC Fight Night 59 prelims on the UFC Fight Pass at 6PM ET/3PM PT.

Let’s be real, hardly anybody is going to be watching Tateki Matsuda vs. Joby Sanchez and Matt Van Buren vs. Sean O’Connell. 

The UFC and FOX are hoping that fans will click to Fox Sports 1 at 7PM PT/4PM PT to catch the remaining six prelims, then ride right into the main card at 10PM ET/7PM PT. Unfortunately for them, there are only a few hardcore MMA fans that will do that. It’s hard to believe even UFC president Dana White will give his full attention to the prelims when his beloved Pats are gunning to make another Super Bowl.

Given its watered-down state, the only thing most fans care for these days is the UFC’s main card. This Sunday specifically, it’s all about McGregor.

Did the UFC and FOX do enough to get fans who watched the Packers vs. Seahawks game to switch back to Fox Sports 1 to watch McGregor do his thing after the Colts vs. Patriots game on CBS?

What’s your Sunday schedule look like?

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