WSOFNYC, which unfolded in front of a sold-out crowd at The Theater at Madison Square Garden, was a historical one in many ways. Besides featuring four title fights and some of the best talent the promotion has to offer on a single, spectacular card, the event set new viewership records for WSOF and NBC.
WSOFNYC drew a robust average 951,000 viewers which peaked at 1.3 million during the sensational lightweight title bout between Justin Gaethje and Luiz Firmino. This is also despite the fact the event was competing against several major sporting events and airing on New Year’s Eve including the College Football Playoff Game between Alabama and Washington.
When you factor in NBCSN viewership, the total is bumped to well over 1.2 million. The card began on WSOF.com before transitioning to NBSCN and finally, NBC for the main card portion of the even.
WSOF President Ray Sefo was encouraged by the performance and was excited about the company’s prospects heading into 2017.
“It was a great night of fights we had to finish off 2016. Seeing all the fans come out to pack the house was great and I know I appreciate all of them and I’m sure the fighters do as well,” said Sefo. “I can’t wait to get back to work to bring more big MMA shows to our fans in 2017.”
“The debut of World Series of Fighting in New York City was spectacular,” said World Series of Fighting CEO Carlos Silva. “This monumental event was watched by millions of people and we are thrilled at its massive success.”
WSOFNYC featured four title bouts along with former WSOF heavyweight champion Smealinho Rama making his light heavyweight debut. Also featured on the main card was a swing bout between Division I All-American wrestler Paul Bradley and former WSOF title challenger, Yushin Okami.
Up next for the promotion is WSOF35 on Saturday, Feb. 25 which features a heavyweight title fight between the reining champion Blagoy Ivanov (14-1) and challenger Shawn Jordan (19-7). The event will air on NBCSN at a venue to be names soon.
Lightweight Title Fight: Justin Gaethje def. Luiz Firmino via TKO (Stoppage), Rd. 3, 5:00
Welterweight Title Fight: Jon Fitch def. Jake Shields via Unanimous Decision (49-46, 49-46, 49-46, 49-46)
Bantamweight Title Fight: Marlon Moraes def. Josenaldo Silva via TKO (Knee Injury), Rd. 1, 2:30
Middleweight Title Fight: David Branch (19-3) def. Louis Taylor via Submission (Rear Naked Choke), Rd. 5, 2:00
Welterweight (Swing Bout): Yushin “Thunder” Okami def. Paul Bradley via Split Decision (29-28, 28-29, 29-28)
Heavyweight: Caio Alencar vs. Jared Rosholt via, KO (Strikes), Rd. 1, 1:17
Light Heavyweight: Smealinho Rama (9-2) def. Jake “The Honey Bear” Heun via TKO (Strikes), Rd. 2, 3:30
“Who’s The Toughest?” Catchweight Fight: Shane Kruchten def. Jeremy Mahon, Unanimous Decision (29-28)
Middleweight: Bruno Santos def Vagab Vagabov via Split Decision (29-28, 29-28, 28-29)
Featherweight: Andre Harrison def. Bruce Boyington via Submission, (Rear Naked Choke), Rd. 1, 1:54
Welterweight: Tommy Marcellino def. Matt Denning via Submission (Guillotine), Rd.1, 3:30