Chael Sonnen may not have fought at light-heavyweight in years, and not many people may have expected a very competitive fight, but thousands of people still tuned in to see Jon Jones take out the former middleweight at UFC 159.
According to a report from MMA Fighting.com’s Dave Meltzer, who has been reporting on pay-per-view numbers for some time, preliminary reports indicate that UFC 159 sold between 520,000 and 550,000 pay-per-view buys. While the figures aren’t astronomical, they are enough to make UFC 159 the year’s second highest selling PPV to date. What’s number one? You guessed it. UFC 158, which featured welterweight star Georges St. Pierre taking on his long time nemesis Nick Diaz, and may have drawn just over 1,000,000 buys according toYahoo’s Kevin Iole.
The UFC 159 numbers are higher than what Jones is believed to have drawn at UFC 152, when he submited Vitor Belfort, which according to Meltzer pulled around 410,000 buys.
The Jones-Sonnen fight took place not long after the conclusion of TUF 17, which featured Jones and Sonnen as opposing coaches. Of course, the UFC 159 co-main-event between Michael Bisping and Alan Belcher should also be credited for drawing PPV’s, not only due to the abilities of each man, but because the two had a rather heated rivalry heading into the card.
The light-heavyweight champ Jones took Sonnen down fairly quickly into the UFC 159 main event and eventually put the challenger away with strikes and punches from above.
Article by Kelsey Mowatt