The light heavyweight showdown between Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 232 was a commercial success. The fight pulled an impressive 700,000 PPV buys despite the controversy surrounding the event. The news was released by Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling News Observer.
The fight saw Jones knocking out Gustafsson in the third round. However, days before UFC 232, the entire event was shifted from Las Vegas to Los Angeles after a very abnormal finding in Jones’s drug test forced the Nevada State Athletic Commission not giving Jon Jones a license to fight in the state of Nevada.
The fight was also the second biggest PPV event of 2018, with UFC 229 featuring Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov pulling in 2.4 Million buys.
— Jed I. Goodman (@jedigoodman) January 11, 2019
UFC 232 would be the second highest buyrate of 2018 (according to reports) by a good margin.
Average 2018 PPV buyrate (per reports): 447,307
Average 2017 PPV buyrate (per reports): 339,583
Average 2016 PPV buyrate (per reports): 655,230 (3 Conor cards, 1 Ronda card, UFC 200) https://t.co/bcaRdfGWQ7
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) January 11, 2019
“The show did roughly 700,000 buys on PPV, the second biggest number of the year, and well above expectations,” Meltzer said. “The general belief is that all the late publicity led to greater awareness of the show, plus with families getting together over the holidays, it was a great weekend for a PPV show.”
This was a massive improvement over their first fight which pulled roughly 300,000 buys.
This shows that Jon Jones is the second biggest draw for UFC after McGregor. To look at other events of 2018, UFC 231: Holloway vs. Ortega reportedly did somewhere in the neighbourhood of 240,000 to 300,000 buys, while UFC 230: Cormier vs. Lewis drew 250,000 buys. UFC 228: Woodley vs. Till had a buyrate of just 130,000.