TUF Live Premiere TV Ratings Lower Than Past Premieres

March 12, 2012
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The Ultimate Fighter Live (TUF Live)The ratings are in and the first episode of The Ultimate Fighter: Live debuted on FX on Friday night to an average audience of 1.3 million viewers, according to industry sources.

The Ultimate Fighter: Live kicked off season 15 with 16 one-round fights, aired live on FX. Each episode for the rest of the season will feature footage filmed and edited within a few days of each Friday night episode, culminating in at least one live fight each week.

TUF: Live is the first time that the popular series has aired since the new UFC television deal with the Fox family of networks. All 14 previous seasons aired on Spike TV.

To put the number into perspective, the debut of the first The Ultimate Fighter on Spike drew 1.7 million viewers, averaging 2.0 million viewers per premier episode over 14 seasons.

The Spike TV numbers include a first episode low of 1.5 million viewers for the TUF 14 premiere, and a high of 4.1 million viewers for the TUF 10 premiere. TUF 10 was also the season that featured YouTube sensation Kimbo Slice.

The TUF: Live premier, when coupled with a showing of Transformers 2, was still strong enough to propel FX to a Friday night victory in the ratings race for Adults 18-49 and Adults 18-35, according to FX’s John Solberg, the network’s senior vice president of media relations.

Spike TV continued to counter-program the UFC’s offerings with the library of UFC programming that remains in their availability for the remainder of this year. Spike countered TUF: Live with its own Ultimate Fighter Friday Night, featuring a best-of from the years The Ultimate Fighter aired on its network. Ultimate Fighter Friday Night premiered opposite TUF: Live drawing 653,000 viewers.

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  • RonnieV

    What do you expect? Who watches TV on a Friday night? Friday is a drinking night!

  • fitefan

    yea, I know the fights are on Fridays amd they new gimic is ‘Live’. But they would get better numbers on Thurs or even back on Wed.

  • johnnylopes

    not cool considerin the friday thing… put it on a Sunday or Monday night… targeting 18-35 ages tuesdays-thursday is tough.. with Comedy Central n MTV n VH1 programs sad to say… plus Sons of Anarchy run Tuesdays on FX

    Sundays would be perfect.. Mondays would be competin with pro wrestling which UFC would win over

    and i only watched for JOEY PROCTOR which was 1st fight… then i enjoyed my Friday

  • Towers66

    By 2013 the ratings are going to get way out of control. 5 years from now it will be funny to look back and see how small the fan base was in 2012. Just like how few American fans in 2002/03/04/05. This sport is on its way.

  • Personally I watch Bellator and DVR Ultimate Fighter Live.

  • pauly12

    Why 650,000 fight fans would watch a best of TUF show on Spike instead of the live bouts on FX is a head scratcher.

    • Hansel VonHaggard

      I can almost promise you that 650,000 people watched the re-runs of TUF cause FX is a pain in the A** to get (At least in my area it is)… I had to change Television carriers when I heard about the UFC on Fox contract because I had Time Warner cable and it’s IMPOSSIBLE to get FX and Fuel tv with them! I switched to DirecTV and now I’m able to watch all of the UFC free shows without a hassle or having to go out to a bar! I know that SpikeTV is run in pretty much every basic cable package and unless they make Fuel and FX that way then the ratings probably won’t change (in my opinion that is!)