The loss of a heavyweight title fight send what was UFC 196 over to free TV and it became UFC Fight Night 82. While it had some talent on the card for sure, it didn't look to be a surefire ratings draw. Surprisingly though, the event definitely delivered for Fox Sports 1.
The main card averaged 1,317,000 viewers, which is the fifth-highest viewership number for a UFC event on the network. Surprisingly, the card didn't peak during the main event but during a bout between Ovince Saint Preux and Rafael Cavalcante, which drew 1,467,000 viewers.
Adding to the impressive number is the number of viewers for the prelims - an average of 1,093,000 viewers, the second-best number for a preliminary card on FS1. Even the post-fight show drew 545,000 which was huge.
The main event of UFC Fight Night 82 saw Stephen Thompson dismantle former champion Johny Hendricks on the way to defeating him by first-round submission.