Sunday, November 28, 2021

Bellator 171 Averages 720,000 Viewers After 2.2 Million Peak at Last Event

The numbers are in for Bellator 171 and they aren’t too surprising.

Nielsen (via released the average viewership numbers for the event this past Friday night (Jan. 27). Bellator 171 was able to secure an average viewership of 720,000. The event, which aired live on Spike, was headlined by a catchweight bout between Chidi Njokuani and Melvin Guillard.

The previous event, Bellator 170, was headlined by a light heavyweight bout between Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Hall of Famer Tito Ortiz and Chael Sonnen. That card averaged 1.5 million viewers and peaked at 2.2 million for the main event. It was Ortiz’s retirement fight.

The fact that Bellator 171 aired just six days after Ortiz vs. Sonnen may have helped its viewership. When you compare it to Bellator 169, that event drew 643,000 viewers before the DVR +3 ratings were taken into account.

Njokuani dominated his fight against Guillard. “Chidi Bang Bang” won all three rounds on the judge’s scorecards. In fact, Guillard couldn’t even snag 27 points on any score total. Njokuani earned scores of 30-24, 30-25, and 30-26. “The Young Assassin” remains winless in Bellator and hasn’t achieved an official win since July 2014.

The co-main event saw hometown hero David Rickels batter Aaron Derrow. Besides coming out to an epic “Mannequin Challenge” entrance, “The Caveman” also delivered inside the cage. Rickels dropped and pounded his opponent on the ground before finally finishing it in the third round. The win saw Rickels’ record improve to 18-4, 2 NC.

Women’s flyweight action was also featured on the card. Jessica Middleton went toe-to-toe with Alice Smith Yauger. Middleton was able to bloody up her opponent and hammer away with leg kicks. Middleton cruised to a unanimous decision victory.

The main card opener saw featherweight prospect A.J. McKee take on hometown favorite Brandon Phillips. While Phillips had his moments in the fight, it wasn’t enough. The “Mercenary” scored a last minute takedown and earned a unanimous decision win.

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