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By: Jamie Penick, MMATorch Editor-in-Chief
The final event for World Extreme Cagefighting was a successful finale for the organization. Not only was Anthony Pettis' remarkable kick off the wall in the fifth round of his bout with Ben Henderson plastered all over ESPN in the days following the event, but the organization brought in the second most viewers for a WEC event on Versus in 2010, and the seventh most viewers overall for the organization.
The Thursday night broadcast garnered a .62 household rating with an average of 615,000 viewers, just short of the mark set with the first WEC event of the year. The WEC 46 event in January, headlined by Henderson against then Champion Jamie Varner, brought 640,000 viewers to the network.
The number was still well short of the biggest WEC events on the network, as well as a few hundred thousand viewers less than the UFC's two forays onto the network in 2010. But the number was above average for the organization, and helped usher out the WEC as the organization is folded into the UFC in 2011.
Penick's Analysis: The numbers are good comparatively speaking, but overall it helps to illustrate why the WEC is folding into the UFC. Without the UFC branding the organization simply wasn't bringing in the numbers to the network. When the UFC ran two cards on Versus in 2010 - both of which were on the lower end of their televised events overall from a drawing power standpoint - that brought in more viewers than any of the WEC cards not headlined by Urijah Faber, it was clear that the WEC wasn't going to gain any more traction with the WEC brand. Still, the organization will be missed overall, but this was a great main event to finish out with.
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Jamie Penick, editor-in-chief
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