This past weekend, MMA fans were treated to the UFC 234 pay-per-view, which was headlined by Israel Adesanya defeating former UFC Middleweight Champion Anderson Silva by decision.
A four fight preliminary card would also air live on ESPN, with Devonte Smith defeating Dong Hyun Ma in the featured spot, which brought in an overnight rating on 1.0 according to MMA Fighting. Other fights on that portion of the preliminary card saw Shane Young defeat Austin Arnett, Kai Kara-France defeat Raulian Paiva and Kyung Ho Kang defeat Teruto ishihara.
The lead in was a major factor in why the prelims drew such a huge rating, as an NCAA Basketball game between Duke and Virginia aired before the UFC event, which brought in a 1.7 rating. Competition was also stiff on Saturday Night as well, with the NBA airing a game in primetime on NBC and the AAF aired their inaugural game on CBS.
There was also over a million searches on Google on Saturday Night for them term “UFC 234,” which could mean the PPV buy rate is going to be quite high as well. The UFC 234 card did lose the original main event on that day of the show, as middleweight champion Robert Whittaker was forced to withdraw from the card due to needing emergency surgery.