UFC 121 has been rightfully dubbed as the deepest fight card of 2010. As expected, the world’s biggest MMA promotion and Spike TV teamed up to produce their popular “UFC Primetime” series to kick the hype train into overdrive. Unfortunately, the debut episode of the three-part series didn’t live up to the successes of prior editions.
According to MMAPayout, Wednesday’s premiere of “UFC Primetime: Lesnar vs. Velasquez” pulled in a solid 974,000 viewers but failed to reach the 1 million mark its two predecessors did.
“UFC Primetime: St-Pierre vs. Penn II” launched the documentary series back in January 2009. It featured welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre’s UFC 94 rematch with BJ Penn, which at the time was the biggest mulligan in the sport’s history.
The opening episode earned a high of 880,000 viewers.
To the surprise of no one, GSP reemerged to star in “UFC Primetime: St-Pierre vs. Hardy” this past March. Cameras followed MMA’s most marketable athlete around as he prepared for his UFC 111 clash with Dan Hardy.
That first episode garnered over 1 million viewers.
A few months later, Spike brought the show back with two of the most vocal Octagon fighters in history. Former light heavyweight champions Rashad Evans and Quinton “Rampage” Jackson gave fans an inside peek of their camps leading up to their UFC 114 showdown.
The debut episode of “UFC Primetime: Rampage vs. Evans” currently holds the ratings record with 1.2 million viewers.
History has shown that the opening episode of the “UFC Primetime” series has been its most successful, so it’ll be interesting to see if “Brocktober” can break the trend with the remaining shows.
The final two episodes will air on October 13th and 20th at 11PM ET/PT, respectively.