The UFC will begin airing programming on ESPN starting in 2019 and now one of the promotions more popular shows is going with them.
UFC President Dana White has stated that the UFC Ultimate Fighter will air on ESPN when the promotion moves there next year.
“‘The Ultimate Fighter’ will continue,” White said during a media scrum in line with DWTNCS Episode 16. “There’s still a huge market for ‘The Ultimate Fighter.’ ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ still does well.”
Fox Sports 1 currently airs the reality show, with the upcoming UFC Ultimate Fighter 28 season being the last to air on that platform.
Even though data shows that the ratings have been declining for TUF, a confident White believes the show is a big enough brand to continue on.
“People will look at the ratings, and they’ll come in at a half-million, 600 (thousand), 650, but that’s the initial rating,” White said. “Now, with DVR and stuff like that, the numbers are much bigger. Last season’s ‘Ultimate Fighter’ (27) averaged about a million viewers. That’s a lot of people. It’s still a big show and a big brand. Yeah, it’ll go on.”
TUF will join other staples such as Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series, UFC Fight Night and other shows/events to air on ESPN next year.