“Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Silva” continued the momentum the San Jose-based promotion gained with last month’s “Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Cyborg” event by scoring the highest ratings of any of the promotion’s previous Showtime broadcasts.
According to MMA Junkie, Saturday night’s event from East Rutherford, NJ peaked with a total of 1.1 million viewers during the main event that saw Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva defeat the legendary Fedor Emelianenko.
Overall, the event averaged 741,000 viewers.
The previous Strikeforce record on Showtime was held by “Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg” which averaged 576,000 viewers and peaked with 856,000. That event in August 2009 featured a heavily hyped women’s title bout between Gina Carano and Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos.
“Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Cyborg” also scored significant ratings just two weeks ago, averaging 561,000 viewers and peaking with 853,000. That event featured a main event battle pitting Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz against Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos, as well as the return to MMA of football legend Herschel Walker.
“Strikeforce: Fedor vs. Silva” featured the first two quarterfinal bouts of the promotion’s heavily hyped World Grand Prix heavyweight tournament. Silva earned himself a ticket to the semifinals with a TKO victory over Emelianenko after the Russian was deemed unable to continue by the ringside doctor due to a heavily swollen right eye.
Sergei Kharitonov also earned a trip to the semifinals of the tournament with a first round knockout victory over Andrei Arlovski.
The second two quarterfinal bouts pitting Alistair Overeem vs. Fabricio Werdum and Josh Barnett vs. Brett Rogers are set to take place on April 9 and will air live on Showtime.