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Saturday’s four-hour preliminary card for UFC 251 attracted an average audience of 851,000 viewers to ESPN, according to ShowBuzz Daily.
The preliminary card aired on ESPN from 6 p.m. ET to 10 p.m. ET and featured a light heavyweight bout between ex-Rizin champion Jiri Prochazka and former UFC title challenger Volkan Oezdemir. Prochazka enjoyed a successful Octagon debut, defeating Oezdemir by second-round technical knockout. Viewership peaked at 1.3 million during Prochazka vs. Oezdemir.
The ratings represent an improvement over the those for the UFC 250 prelims, which averaged 775,000 viewers on ESPN. However, the UFC 251 prelims rank only fifth out of sixth pay-per-view preliminary cards thus far in 2020. It’s important to note that Saturday’s prelims were simulcast on ESPN and ESPN+.
UFC 251 took place at the Flash Forum on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi. The main card aired on pay-per-view via ESPN+ and was headlined by a welterweight championship clash between Kamaru Usman and Jorge Masvidal. The pay-per-view draw reportedly did 1.3 million pay-per-view buys.