The main card of UFC On Fox 1: Velasquez vs. Dos Santos featured just one fight - quite obviously the Heavyweight Title fight between champion Cain Velasquez and Junior dos Santos. It was a great fight - or at the very least, it was an exciting 1:04, at which point dos Santos landed a vicious overhand right on the temple of Velasquez, then proceeded to swarm him and punch him out on the ground to score the TKO stoppage.
For the UFC, the event signified a lot of things, but more than anything, it served as a means to introduce new viewers to the sport. The first thirty minutes of the broadcast was spent hyping the fight. Curt Menefee was there to talk, and though he didn't leave much of an impression, he brought an air of familiarity and validation to the broadcast. The Fox Sports music and logos were plastered everywhere and this helped, as well. Dana White and Joe Rogan were both yelling as they usually do, but it was a more subdued roar at this point.
Heck, the UFC and Fox even thought to clean up the died blood in the octagon before the main event, in case new viewers would be put off by it. Every detail was thought of and carried out. The broadcast was simple, to the point, and featured backstories on both fighters, with equal hyping for both of them. It may have been a little cookie cutter, but it was a clear step above any UFC event's production in the promotion's history and, quite honestly, leaves the core fanbase wanting more.
What it all comes down to is this: the UFC, along with Brock Lesnar, who definitely got another popularity boost Saturday night, took 64 seconds of actual fight content and turned it into a broadcast that featured not a second of dead air.
That being said, was the fight itself enough to bring in some new viewers? This writer things that it was. It's very obvious that the UFC wanted the fight to go longer than the 1:04 that it did, perhaps through two rounds (the broadcast was guaranteed no commercials between the first and second round), but the spectacle itself was brilliantly portrayed. New viewers were looking at two fighters who, among other things, seemed to radiate this feeling of professionalism and had this "best in the world" aura about them.
It only makes sense that the two best in the world could collide and, yes, a knockout in the first two minutes is feasible. Even new fans could see that they were both ready to go and that one of them could certainly end the fight on one punch. What ended up happening was a thrilling TKO after about forty seconds of intense buildup. They saw an emotional dos Santos at the end of the fight with tears in his eyes and they say Bruce Buffer put on his best performance yet announcing the fighters before it.
All-in-all, the actual fight wasn't ideal, but the UFC planned the broadcast around the possibility that the fight could be ending soon, so it ended up being pretty awesome through-and-through. So far, the feedback I'm getting from fans is very, very positive - while most of the MMA media is sort of talking about how it wasn't that great. It's pretty clear that the broadcast was tailored to the new fans and casuals, though, so it's hard to really take that into consideration.
We won't know if it was enough until we get the ratings and, of course, some level of numbers to compare them to when the second UFC on Fox event happens.