Featuring Ivan Trembow's Self-Important, Random Rants on Mixed Martial Arts, Video Games, Pro Wrestling, Television, Politics, Sports, and High-Quality Wool Socks
Friday, November 13, 2009
Minute-by-Minute Ratings for Strikeforce on CBS
by Ivan Trembow
The average viewership levels for each individual fight that aired on CBS' broadcast of "Strikeforce/M-1 Global Saturday Night Fights" on November 7 are now available, using minute-by-minute Neilsen ratings data.
The viewership figures listed below are based on live viewership, plus same-day DVR, rounded to the nearest 1,000 viewers, and the times listed are ET/PT. The indicated times begin at the opening bell of a fight and end at the minute in which the winner of the fight is known.
(In the case of a fight that ends in submission or KO/TKO, the ending time is obviously when the fight ends. In the case of a judges' decision, the ending time is the minute in which the judges' decision is announced. In the case of a doctors' stoppage, the ending time is the minute in which the fight is officially stopped by the doctor. The ending time is always the minute in which the winner of the fighter is known.)
The first fight on the November 7th broadcast of "Strikeforce/M-1 Global Saturday Night Fights" was Fabricio Werdum vs. Antonio Silva, which aired from 9:14 PM to 9:34 PM and averaged 3.704 million viewers.
The next fight on the broadcast was Gegard Mousasi vs. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou, which aired from 9:44 PM to 9:54 PM and averaged 3.952 million viewers.
The next fight was Jake Shields vs. Jason "Mayhem" Miller in a title fight that lasted five full rounds, which aired from 10:11 PM to 10:44 PM and averaged 4.381 million viewers. While the viewership of most fights tends to increase as the fight goes on, this was not the case for Shields vs. Miller, which was like a tale of two fights in terms of viewership.
The typical growth pattern for the fight's viewership ceased to exist after the beginning of the slower-paced Round 4, as the fight's viewership was never able to bounce back to its high mark, which came during the final minute of Round 3.
Instead of the final two rounds of Shields vs. Miller being the most-watched rounds of the fight, the audience level stayed relatively even and actually decreased very slightly. The first three rounds of the fight averaged 4.411 million viewers, and the last two rounds of the fight averaged 4.347 million viewers. Nonetheless, the Shields vs. Miller fight still drew significantly more viewers than the previous fight on the broadcast.
When the Shields vs. Miller fight ended, CBS had gone over 30 full minutes without a commercial break in most markets. In order to make up for lost time as a result of the Shields vs. Miller match being so long, the majority of the next 13 minutes were filled with several different blocks of commercials.
The average viewership during this period (from 10:45 PM to 10:58 PM) plummeted by nearly 500,000 viewers. While the preceding Shields vs. Miller fight drew an average of 4.381 million viewers, the average viewership for the aforementioned 13-minute period was down to 3.894 million viewers.
The next fight was the main event of the evening, Fedor Emelianenko vs. Brett Rogers. Emelianenko vs. Rogers aired from 11:01 PM to 11:09 PM, and it drew an average of 5.467 million viewers.
The viewership level often decreases right after a fight ends, but the viewership level actually increased shortly after the Emelianenko vs. Rogers fight ended, as channel-flippers may have been stopped in their tracks by the instant replay of the fight's finish.
While there were 5.847 million viewers watching during the minute when the Emelianenko vs. Rogers fight ended, the next two minutes, which were filled with instant replay after instant replay of Emelianenko knocking out Rogers, actually drew 6.120 million viewers and 6.151 million viewers, respectively. (Those two minutes have not been counted in the average viewership for the Emelianenko vs. Rogers fight because they came after the fight was over.) After that, the rest of the broadcast stayed true to the usual pattern for live MMA broadcasts, which is that viewers tend to leave in droves after the main event is finished.
Below is a listing of the most-watched individual fights on the November 7th CBS broadcast, followed by a comparison of viewership gains for each fight, as well as a comparison to the fighters' previous live fights on free TV.
Most-Watched Individual Fights on November 7 Event "Strikeforce/M-1 Global Saturday Night Fights"
Based on Average Number of Viewers using Minute-by-Minute Ratings
1. Fedor Emelianenko vs. Brett Rogers: 5.467 million viewers
2. Jake Shields vs. Jason Miller: 4.381 million viewers
3. Gegard Mousasi vs. Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou: 3.952 million viewers
4. Fabricio Werdum vs. Antonio Silva: 3.704 million viewers
In terms of the increase or decrease in average viewership compared to the previous fight on the broadcast, the Mousasi vs. Sokoudjou fight gained 248,000 viewers; the Shields vs. Miller fight gained 429,000 viewers; and the Emelianenko vs. Rogers fight gained 1,086,000 viewers. This statistic does not apply to the Werdum vs. Silva fight because it was the first fight on the broadcast.
Comparisons to Fighters' Previous Matches
Several of the fighters on the November 7th broadcast had previous fights on live event broadcasts that premiered on broadcast television or basic cable.
The Emelianenko vs. Rogers viewership of 5.467 million viewers was higher than the 3.824 million viewers who watched Rogers fight Jon Murphy on May 31, 2008 during an EliteXC broadcast on CBS. The Rogers vs. Murphy fight was actually the first MMA fight on CBS, giving Rogers the unique distinction of competing in both the first MMA fight on CBS and the most recent MMA fight on CBS.
The Shields vs. Miller viewership of 4.381 million viewers was down from the 5.338 million viewers who watched Shields fight Paul Daley on October 4, 2008 during an EliteXC broadcast on CBS. On the other hand, the Shields vs. Miller viewership of 4.381 million viewers was higher than the 2.867 million viewers who watched Shields fight Nick Thompson on July 26, 2008 during an EliteXC broadcast on CBS.
The Mousasi vs. Sokoudjou viewership of 3.952 million viewers was higher than the 2.738 million viewers who watched Sokoudjou fight Luis Cane on October 18, 2008 during the UFC 89 broadcast on Spike TV.
Finally, the Werdum vs. Silva viewership of 3.704 million viewers was higher than the 3.508 million viewers who watched Werdum fight Andrei Arlovski on April 21, 2007 during the UFC 70 broadcast on Spike TV.
Related Article: Top 30 Most-Watched Fights on Live Event Broadcasts in U.S. MMA History
Labels: Mixed Martial Arts (MMA)