The 10th installment of “The Ultimate Fighter 16” attracted an audience of 643,000 to FX this past Friday, according to an industry source.
Ratings dipped significantly from the previous two weeks, when the reality show drew 921,000 viewers for Episode 9 and 1.1 million viewers for Episode 8. Last week’s audience was the second lowest of the entire season, ahead of only the 624,000 viewers who witnessed the show’s fifth episode on Oct. 12.
A pair of welterweight quarterfinals highlighted Episode 10, as Team Carwin member Neil Magny bested teammate Bristol Marunde, while Team Nelson’s Colton Smith outdueled Team Carwin’s Igor Araujo. Both Magny and Smith earned unanimous verdicts to advance to the “TUF 16” semifinals.
“The Ultimate Fighter” began airing on Spike in 2005 and remained on the network through last year. When the Ultimate Fighting Championship joined forces with Fox, the series moved to FX in 2012. “TUF 15” was the first iteration of the reality series to feature live fights at the end of each show, but the UFC has returned to the taped format for the current season.
Featuring former interim heavyweight champion Shane Carwin and “TUF 10” winner Roy Nelson as coaches, “TUF 16” began with 32 welterweights vying for a six-figure UFC contract. Carwin recently suffered a knee injury and withdrew from his matchup with Nelson at the show’s finale on Dec. 15 in Las Vegas. Instead, “Big Country” will square off with fellow “TUF 10” alumnus Matt Mitrione at the event.