A middleweight headliner with championship implications brought a decent amount of eyes to ESPN on Saturday.
According to ShowBuzz Daily, UFC on ESPN 22 averaged 935,000 viewers for Saturday’s main card on ESPN. The five-bout offering didn’t offer a lot of depth, but it did feature former middleweight king Robert Whittaker’s entertaining five-round verdict over Kelvin Gastelum. Additionally, longtime heavyweight veteran Andrei Arlovski earned a decision win against Chase Sherman in the co-headliner.
That figure ranks as the top rating for a UFC on ESPN card thus far in 2021. None of the other three cards on the network this year topped 721,000 viewers for the main draw. The card had some stiff competition in the combat sports realm, going head-to-head with Triller Fight Club’s Jake Paul vs. Ben Askren event, which reportedly drew more than 1 million pay-per-view buys.
Meanwhile, the preliminary card averaged 879,000 viewers on ESPN. That featured bout on that portion of the card saw Alexander Romanov take a foul-shortened technical split decision over Juan Espino at heavyweight. No other UFC on ESPN preliminary card has reached even 500,000 viewers this year.
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