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Six Other Seth Rogen/James Franco Films That Should’ve Been Canceled

Tag: PPV buyrates

The UFC 178-181 PPV Buyrate Estimates Are About as ‘Meh’ as You’d Expect


(Pretending that Mighty Mouse wasn’t headlining the card may have been a brilliant marketing strategy — but it wasn’t enough to make UFC 178 a success.)

Reddit user thisisdanitis passes along the latest UFC pay-per-view buyrate estimates from Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer newsletter, which provide more proof that the UFC’s PPV business just ain’t what it used to be. Here we go…

UFC 178 (Johnson-Cariaso, Cerrone-Alvarez, McGregor-Poirier): 205,000 buys

UFC 179 (Aldo vs. Mendes): 160,000-200,000 buys

UFC 180 (Werdum vs. Hunt): 185,000-200,000 buys

UFC 181 (Hendricks vs. Lawler, Pettis vs. Melendez): 380,000 [Update: Meltzer is now calling the UFC 181 estimate "between 375,000 and 400,000 buys."]

The UFC 178 estimate is the most surprising to me, because the event was so highly anticipated among hardcore MMA fans as a “stacked” card with Event of the Year potential, and it still barely broke 200k. Of course, casual fans only look at the main event, and Demetrious Johnson is basically the worst PPV draw on the roster.

It’s almost as surprising that UFC 180 performed as well as it did, considering that the card had no stars outside of the main event. And 380,000 buys for UFC 181 is very good, relatively speaking. That’s like the equivalent of 650,000 buys in 2009.

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The UFC Needs to Massively Scale Down The Amount of PPVs Each Year


(“PPV buys are higher than ever, dummies. These goofy Internet fucks know NOTHING. Everything is fine.”—Dana White doing his best impersonation of this guy. / Photo via Getty)

By Mike Fagan

Cain Velasquez became another victim (again) of the UFC’s so-called “injury bug,” pulling out of UFC 180 with a knee injury. This is great news for people who want to see a weirdo holding a UFC heavyweight title as Mark Hunt stepped in to fight original challenger Fabricio Werdum. This is bad news for fans who want to watch the greatest heavyweight talent in the sport since Fedor Emelianenko. It’s horrible news for the UFC, who set up this event in Mexico City to both help cultivate the Mexican market and provide a similar atmosphere for Velasquez that Conor McGregor received in Ireland earlier this year.

It’s another blow to the UFC’s pay-per-view business. UFC Chairman and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta told Sports Business Daily that “about 80 percent” of fights they wanted to put on have been cancelled. That’s probably an exaggeration (at least if we’re looking at the entirety of the UFC’s matchmaking), but the reality isn’t much better. Of the 14 events including and between UFC 168 and UFC 181 (including the cancelled UFC 176), only five have escaped an injury to a fighter in either the main or co-main event. That is, 64% of UFC PPVs within that timeframe have had alterations or cancellations to one of the featured bouts at the top of the card.

Combined with the loss of Georges St-Pierre (quasi-retirement) and Anderson Silva (wishboned leg), the injuries at the top of marquee events have led the UFC to its worst year on pay-per-view since 2005. In 2005, the UFC ran six pay-per-view events for a total of 950,000 buys and an average of 158,000 per event. This year hasn’t been that bad (2.22M total buys/277,500 per event), but that’s far below the “down years” of 2011-13. (It should be noted that those “down years” are in line with the total PPV business the UFC did prior to the 2009-10 Lesnar Era.)

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Wild Rumor of the Day: UFC 174 Did Less Than 100,000 Pay-Per-View Buys


(*crickets* / Photo via Getty)

Yesterday, MMAFighting’s Dave Meltzer reported that UFC 173: Barao vs. Dillashaw pulled an estimated 200,000-215,000 pay-per-view buys. While that number is certainly on the low end of UFC buyrates, it’s not a disaster by any means. Keep in mind that UFC 169 — a card that featured a Renan Barao vs. Urijah Faber rematch, Jose Aldo defending his featherweight belt against Ricardo Lamas, and a high-profile heavyweight bout between Alistair Overeem and Frank Mir — only earned an estimated 230,000 buys back in February. On paper, UFC 173 was arguably a weaker offering, but the buyrate wasn’t that far off. Basically, it could have been a lot worse.

The bad news is, last weekend’s UFC 174: Johnson vs. Bagautinov event might have done a historically awful, Bellator-caliber buyrate. First, here’s Meltzer discussing the early estimates in his newsletter yesterday:

“It’s too early to get accurate numbers, but every indication we’ve gotten was very bad, and that it showed a steep decline from UFC 173, which was among the lower numbers of the last eight years. UFC PPV shows usually range from 200,000 to 500,000 Google searches after the event, and are usually in the top few searched for items in the country. A bad show may only do 100,000. Bellator’s show last month hit 100,000. A big show can top 500,000, with the shows that hover around 1 million buys usually doing anywhere from 1 million to 5 million searches. This show did less than 20,000, unheard of for a PPV…

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Report: ‘Weidman vs. Silva 2′ Becomes 7th UFC Pay-Per-View to Break One Million Buys


(“Alright fellas, now let’s go eat!” — Matt Serra, pretty much any time of day. / Photo via MMAFighting.com)

It’s been over three years since the UFC produced a pay-per-view that earned more than one million buys, but it appears that UFC 168: Weidman vs. Silva 2 has ended the drought. According to Dave Meltzer, UFC 168 broke the seven-figure threshold, selling up to 1.1 million PPVs.

If Meltzer’s projections are accurate, UFC 168 would become the seventh UFC PPV to earn a million-plus buyrate. The promotion first hit the mark with UFC 66: Liddell v. Ortiz II, which did an estimated 1,050,000 buys in December 2006. Two years later, the UFC scored back-to-back million-sellers with UFC 91: Lesnar v. Couture (1,010,000) and UFC 92: The Ultimate 2008 (1,000,000).

In July 2009, the UFC put on its most successful show to date when UFC 100 — which featured Brock Lesnar and Georges St-Pierre on the same card — took in an astounding 1.6 million buys, and in 2010, the promotion hit seven figures twice with UFC 114: Evans vs. Jackson in May (1,000,000) and UFC 116: Lesnar vs. Carwin in July (1,060,000).

A small handful of UFC shows have crept into 900k+ territory since July 2010 — all headlined by superstars like Lesnar, St-Pierre, and Anderson Silva — but no others managed to score an even million until UFC 168, which could go down as the second-most-successful UFC PPV of all time. I guess MMA fans didn’t mind paying that extra five bucks after all.

Previously: ‘UFC 168: Weidman vs. Silva 2? Earned the Second-Biggest MMA Live Gate in Nevada History

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Crazy Enough to Be True: Ten Wild MMA Predictions for 2013


(You see, kids, this is why we don’t break the fourth rule of Project Mayhem. Photo via Complex)

By Jason Moles

As is customary, nay tradition, around these parts, we’re hitting the eggnog early and often this week — thus, the obligatory Top 10 list to close out another year in the world of mixed martial arts. It’s not all fluff, though: Last year we predicted a champion would test positive for a banned substance and Brock Lesnar would retire. Not bad, huh? So grab a seat while we break out the crystal ball and see what 2013 has in store for us.

1.) Showtime stays in the MMA biz, will announce deal with Invicta FC and others.

MMA is just too popular to completely wash your hands of. Showtime may finally be done with Strikeforce, but that only means they’re now free to partner up with the likes of all-female Invicta FC or the World Series of Fighting, both of which could be looking for more permanent homes after their early success in 2012. Don’t let the Invicta PPV news fool you; they can’t win that battle. No matter who inks the deal, expect Showtime to counter-program at least one UFC event.

2.) A Ronda Rousey loss brings about the swift execution of women’s MMA in the UFC.

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Sign of the End-Times: UFC 150 Pulls an Estimated 190k Pay-Per-View Buys


(“Sorry Frankie, but based on the terms of your pay-per-view bonus scale — as clearly stated in your contract — you actually owe us $10,000.“)

It wasn’t just UFC 150‘s live-gate that fell way below expectations. According to a new report from Dave “Doom ‘N’ Gloom” Meltzer, last weekend’s Edgar vs. Henderson 2 card pulled in an estimated 190,000 pay-per-view buys. Judging by the MMAPayout.com Blue Book, that would make UFC 150 the second worst-performing UFC PPV since February 2006. And what’s the #1 worst-performing card of the last six years? The UFC 147: Silva vs. Franklin 2 show from just two months earlier, which took in only 175k buys. (UFC 149: Faber vs. Barao didn’t fare much better last month with a modest 235k buys.) Sorry Fric and Frack, Christmas has been canceled this year.

A couple caveats:
Keep in mind that there was a technical issue on Saturday night where DirecTV subscribers were unable to order the UFC 150 broadcast by phone or computer, although they could still order it via their remotes, according to reports. Plus, Bendo vs. Frankie ran up against the penultimate night of the 2012 Olympics, which may have stolen a few more viewers.

That being said…

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UFC Pay-Per-Views Returning to 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT

Brock Lesnar Alistair Overeem UFC 142
(For you two, I’ll sacrifice my beauty-sleep. / ‘shop via blackbeltclub)

After pulling back their pay-per-view start times to 9 p.m. ET this year to cater to East Coast viewers, the UFC will be returning to their original 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT time-slot, beginning with UFC 141 on December 30th. The promotion confirmed the switch to USA Today yesterday, stating that their decision was based on “careful consideration and feedback from our fans.”

It appears that the 9 p.m. experiment didn’t have the intended effect. According to estimates from MMAPayout and the Wrestling Observer, UFC pay-per-views have been averaging 414,500 buys from January to August 2011, down 25% compared to the first eight months of 2010. In particular, it was reported that UFC 134 woefully underperformed, although that event’s totals were certainly affected by Hurricane Irene.

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