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Report: UFC 110 Trending Towards Poor PPV Buys

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That's the word according to Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer(subscription only):

I don’t have a number of buys, but based on trending data which has historically been pretty accurate, it could be in the 215,000 to 240,000 range, basically along the lines of the tape-delayed foreign shows. This was foreign, but wasn’t tape delayed. One cable industry source gave an estimate of 215,000.

Zach Arnold ponders why the show appears to have done so poorly:

I’m actually asking this question for real — because the main event was great on paper. It had meaning and significance, too. Plus the news about the show being a sell-out in Australia was known for a couple months. And…the show aired live on PPV (Sunday afternoon Australian time = Saturday night American time), so it wasn’t taped and there weren’t spoilers on the Internet beforehand.

I think the show did poorly for quite a few reasons:

1.  Cain Velasquez isn't a star yet.  He has only appeared on 3 PPV's  in his entire career, and one of those was a 'foreign card' at UFC 99.  Many think he's the next coming of Christ, but the UFC really hadn't gotten behind promoting the guy until UFC 110.    Of course, now they will promote him heavily with his destruction of Nogueira.

2.  Nogueira isn't and never will be a proven PPV draw to casual fans.  They know who he is roughly, but unless it's a title fight against another promoted fighter, he's not going to do much PPV wise. 

3.  While Wanderlei Silva is a moderate draw, he hadn't fought  since UFC 99.

4.  UFC 110 was the second PPV in the month in the month of February for the UFC and the 3rd consecutive event that did not feature a title fight.

5.  Fans are simply being more selective in which events they purchase IMO.


Now with the return of two title fights and one of the more popular fights in GSP at UFC 111, I expect things to return back to normal with this show doing in excess of 500,000 buys.  Also, just remember these are trending numbers and not concrete numbers.  The show sold out in a day, and the media blitz around the show was pretty good.  The traffic here for that event was off the charts for a foreign show.  I would expect these numbers to creep upwards to around 300K or so, or maybe I'm just being optimistic?