The UFC on FX 5 ratings as well as the ratings for last Friday's episode of The Ultimate Fighter came out last night and they're a mixed bag for the UFC.
The ratings for event, headlined by Antonio Silva's thudding knockout of Travis Browne, came in at 1,084,000 viewers according to TV By The Numbers. That puts it right in line with the lowest rated previous edition of FX fights, the third effort which did 1.1 million. It's down from the first and fourth effort which each pulled 1.3 million and the second which pulled 1.4 million.
However, the increase in UFC viewers watching programming directly before The Ultimate Fighter led to an increase for the UFC's stale reality show, which had seen record lows in their ratings. The prior week hit an abysmal 775,000 homes, but with the UFC on FX 5 lead in the numbers were up to 1,056,000.
There were likely a lot of UFC viewers who thought that they might as well hang out to see what was going on in TUF land. I didn't watch the show to know how effective it would be at potentially keeping viewers. I saw the intro, which talked about guys getting into arguments and the completely played out "prank war" and decided that I'd continue my plan of just watching all of the fights at the same time once the season was over, skipping the tired "drama."
The real telling sign of if the FX show helped the TUF ratings will be this week, to see how many of those viewers were retained or if it was an insignificant one week boost.