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Meh card does meh

Ratings for UFC on Versus 2 are out:

Sunday’s UFC on Versus 2 event scored a 0.86 household rating and an average audience of 991,000 viewers, today confirmed. The ratings took a dip compared to the first UFC on Versus event, which averaged 1.24 million viewers back in March.

And now, analysis and hand wringing! MMA Payout:

The numbers are not great, especially when you compare them to what the UFC does on Spike TV. The caliber of this fight card was pretty high and featured one of the brightest young stars in the game. It should have garnered a stronger result.

Now let’s see why it didn’t:

You can’t compare Versus ratings to Spike ratings: Different number of homes, different demographics, different bunch of other things. It’s not quite the apples to oranges of basic cable and premium channels, but it’s still oranges to lemons – an apt comparison since Versus is smaller and often leaves a bitter taste in your mouth.

The high caliber of this fight card wasn’t very high: Let’s go through it in the mindset of Average Idiot Fan. It was headlined by Jon Jones (“Who?”) vs Vladimir Matyushenko (“Double who?” or worse “BORING!”) and Yushin Okami (“DOUBLE MEGA BORING!”) vs Mark Munoz (“I vaguely remember that deaf guy murderizing him”). As a night of talent between ranked dudes fighting eachother, it was high caliber. As far as star power and draw goes, it was flatter than Keira Knightley.

Jumpstarting that bitch: Also keep in mind the UFC had just come off a month of doing nothing – absolutely nothing. There was no event big or small to help roll into this event. Just no UFC for a month and then this card tucked away on a non-Spike channel. That’s gotta hurt promotional efforts.

Anyways, no one’s disagreeing that the numbers are *gasp* lower than the first UFC on Versus show. But sometimes the reasons are pretty obvious and you don’t have to dig down to some sort of endemic problem with the product to figure out why. UFC on Versus 2 did about as good as could be expected considering what it was and when it happened.