UFC 251 last Saturday was the first event to take place on “Fight Island” and according to the amount of PPV buys the event sold it has done extremely well.
The Athletic’s Mike Coppinger first reported the news that the card drew an estimated 1.3 million buys. The event is the highest-selling pay-per-view in 2020 and the largest under the current ESPN+ deal. UFC 246, which took place in January and was headlined by Conor McGregor vs Donald Cerrone, did one million buys.
Jorge Masvidal, who lost a unanimous decision to welterweight champion Kamaru Usman in the main event, took to Twitter after the figures were released to show his gratitude.
The overwhelming amount of support I have received before, during, and after this journey has been humbling. Still got a lot of goals to meet. All of you that tuned in to see me win, thank you. Those that tuned in to see me lose, thank you. https://t.co/4SCJzwHV10— Jorge Masvidal UFC (@GamebredFighter) July 13, 2020
“The overwhelming amount of support I have received before, during, and after this journey has been humbling,” Masvidal wrote. “Still got a lot of goals to meet. All of you that tuned in to see me win, thank you. Those that tuned in to see me lose, thank you.”
Elsewhere on the card that had three title fights, Alex Volkanovski retained his featherweight title with a close split decision win against Max Holloway. Petr Yan became the new UFC bantamweight champion by defeating Jose Aldo, and Rose Namajunas avenged her loss to Jessica Andrade with a decision win.
UFC 251 is now joined with UFC 205: Alvarez vs. McGregor as the sixth highest-selling UFC PPV in the promotion’s history.
Update: Sports Business Journal says that there were 900,000 PPV buys in the US but 1.3 million overall, presumably adding in international purchases.
Sources tell @Ourand_SBJ in SBJ Media newsletter that UFC 251 logged 1.3 million PPV buys, including close to 900,000 for ESPN+ alone. Best @UFC PPV since October 2018 w/ @TheNotoriousMMA.— Sports Business Journal (@sbjsbd) July 14, 2020
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