Ronda Rousey Popularity Lifts Fox Sports 1

Lead-in programming ahead of the UFC 190 main event ‚ in which Ronda Rousey knocked out her opponent, Bethe Correia, in 34 seconds — peaked at 1.6 million viewers on Fox Sports 1 on Saturday, Aug. 1, making it the most-viewed program among ad-supported cable sports networks in primetime, Fox Sports said. The performance was the third-best ever for pre-pay-per-view event fare on FS1, riding a wave of interest in Rousey.

The blonde Rousey has become a star outside of her mixed-martial-arts fame. As this blog notes, she's made movie appearances (Furious 7, Entourage), has been on a recent cover of Sports Illustrated and made headlines at the ESPY Awards. After winning an ESPY for best fighter, in a field that included PPV boxing titan Floyd Mayweather, she jabbed at Mayweather, who has a history of domestic violence, saying she wondered (opens in new tab) "how Floyd feels being beat by a woman for once."

Fox said that Saturday night’s UFC preliminary bouts (8-10 p.m. PM ET) averaged 1,322,000 viewers before peaking at 1,599,000 viewers (9:15-9:30 p.m. ET). That was 13% better on a household rating basis (1.04 vs. 0.92) and 10% better on an average audience basis (vs. 1,205,000) compared with the preliminary matches on FS1 before Rousey’s last main event PPV card (Feb. 28). That time she defeated challenger Cat Zingano at UFC 184 in 14 seconds.

For the full story go to

Kent Gibbons

Kent has been a journalist, writer and editor at Multichannel News since 1994 and with Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He is a good point of contact for anything editorial at the publications and for Before joining Multichannel News he had been a newspaper reporter with publications including The Washington Times, The Poughkeepsie (N.Y.) Journal and North County News.