This past weekend (Sat. January 26, 2019) Bellator 214 put on a tremendous mixed martial arts (MMA) event. In the finals of the promotion’s Heavyweight Grand Prix Tournament, light heavyweight champion Ryan Bader defeated Fedor Emelianenko. Bader’s first-round knockout victory earned him Bellator’s heavyweight championship, and the honor of being the promotion’s first-ever dual-weight champion.
The card also featured the MMA Debut of former professional wrestling star Jack Swagger (real name Jake Hager), and the return of highly-touted prospect Aaron Pico. Dave Meltzer of MMA Fighting reports Bellator 214 drew its biggest viewership numbers in a year. The show averaged 697,000 viewers. It was Bellator’s best since January 20th of last year, in a card headlined by Chael Sonnen vs. Quinton “Rampage” Jackson.
Bader and Fedor’s main event bout drew 1.2 million viewers. Aaron Pico’s knockout loss to Henry Corrales was seen by 808,000 spectators. And finally, Hager’s MMA debut drew 809,000 viewers. Bellator 214 faced some stiff competition, including the Golden State Warriors vs. Boston Celtics NBA game on ABC, which did 4,290,000 viewers.
Also, Premier Boxing on FOX drew 1,980,000 viewers for a card headlined by Keith Thurman vs. Josesito Lopez. And finally, the NHL All-Star Game on NBC did 1,778,000 viewers.
What do you think about Bellator 214’s viewership performance?