The audience for UFC 142 didn’t disappoint. | File photo
Without the pomp or star power of the company’s August outing in Rio de Janeiro, UFC 142 managed to fly largely under the radar. When last Saturday night rolled around, however, that action inside Rio’s HSBC Arena came as a surprise to many.
“I have to congratulate Mr. Joe Silva for making up such an amazing card,” 72-year-old Oswaldo Paqueta, former vale tudo fighter and friend of the late Carlson Gracie, told Sherdog.com after the show. “It was one of the most exciting UFCs I’ve seen since the first edition.”
Also strong were the domestic television ratings for the event on Brazilian mega-network Rede Globo. With daily advertisement from Globo, the tape-delayed broadcast -- which began at 1:50 a.m. local time -- nearly doubled the station’s Saturday average.
According to commentator Galvao Bueno, who called the action with UFC middleweight champ Anderson Silva, approximately 23 million people watched UFC 142 across Brazil, making for an average 14.6 rating and a 70-percent share. For comparison, youth-oriented channel Sistema Brasileiro de Televisao (SBT) took second place with just a 3.7 rating, while Rede Bandeirantes came in third with a 1.6 average. Rede Record, the channel which Globo beat out for the right to broadcast the UFC, placed fourth with a 1.0 rating.
Though the venue did not sell out as it did in August, the live crowd was also stunning. Even without a fully packed HSBC Arena, there were few empty seats and the audience was just as vociferous as last year.
“Just like in the first show, the energy that comes from the audience was impressive,” UFC President Dana White said at the post-fight press conference. “The noise they made while Vitor [Belfort] was entering was something really impressive.”
White guaranteed during the presser that the UFC will visit Sao Paulo in June, but stopped short of confirming a third Brazilian edition for 2012.