Dana White's wish came true. According to reports from MMA Junkie, Saturday's UFC on Fox main event -- Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos for the UFC heavyweight championship -- drew a record-breaking peak audience of 8.8 million viewers. The total far eclipses the previous mark of 6.5 million set in 2008 by Kimbo Slice vs. James Thompson on CBS' "EliteXC: Primetime" broadcast.
Though the short runtime of the fight hurt the ratings in a big way. Reports indicate the viewing audience dropped to 5.9 million just minutes after the conclusion of the 64-second bout, approaching the one-hour broadcast average of 5.7 million viewers. Still, it's a gripe easily remedied in future iterations with the introduction of longer broadcast schedules.
Additionally, the UFC on Fox debut averaged a 4.0 household rating among the key demographic of men 18-49 and a 4.3 among men 18-34.
Without question, a peak of 8.8 million viewers is an incredible number for the UFC's network debut. Even with the disappointing length of the featured fight, UFC on Fox will be considered an overwhelming success.