The preliminary numbers are in for the UFC 158 PPV buyrate, and they look very promising. Dave Meltzer at MMA Fighting reports the show, which was headlined by Georges St. Pierre's triumphant decision win over Nick Diaz, is expected to top 800,000 buys.
Saturday's UFC 158 may wind up being the biggest pay-per-view event UFC's top draw, Georges St-Pierre, has done on his own with preliminary indications that the show will top 800,000 buys.
The show was expected to be the company's most successful show since July's UFC 148 with Anderson Silva's return match with Chael Sonnen. St-Pierre had done numbers in the 750,000 to 800,000 range in previous fights with B.J. Penn, Dan Hardy, Josh Koscheck and Jake Shields, but this show is expected to finish slightly ahead of those fights.
The buzz surrounding this card translated well both in the US and in Canada. Rogers Sportsnet in Canada averaged 412,000 viewers for the preliminary card, breaking the previous record set at UFC 154, also a GSP-headlined card. The FX average for the same prelim special averaged just under 1.6 million, the 3rd highest in network history. Ratings for the weigh-ins on Fuel TV averaged 215,000 viewers, the highest number they've ever achieved for a weigh-ins broadcast.
GSP's last fight against Carlos Condit reportedly pulled 700k buys. Based on the PPV buys and the TV ratings since his return in November, it's evident that he is still MMA's most consistently reliable audience draw in the sport today.