GLORY World Series has offered fight fans some great action in recent years. But, for all their successes, it seems they haven’t yet enjoyed a large audience.
Sadly, the kickboxing promotion’s April event, GLORY 20 in Dubai, drew only 359,000 viewers on SPIKE TV — despite a card which boasted world title bouts at both featherweight and lightweight. The total represented the second-worst viewership in GLORY history; and in some circles, GLORY was seen to be “on the ropes.”
Instead, it looks like they have bounced back.
Last Friday’s GLORY 21 event in San Diego, which included a middleweight title fight in the main event, scored 488,000 viewers on SPIKE per a report from Michael Stets of MMA Mania.
Why the 36% increase over that disappointing GLORY 20 event? Stets mentions that GLORY is in the process of building his audience, and offered fans more familiar names this time around. The main event at GLORY 21 enjoyed the presence of Simon Marcus, who won a middleweight contender’s tournament at GLORY 20. Raymond Daniels, a GLORY regular who made his name in the American karate circuit, fought in the co-main.
It may also be significant that GLORY 21 also featured a heavyweight tournament on its undercard. In fact, GLORY 20’s poor numbers were a dip of almost 200,000 from GLORY 19 in February, which featured a heavyweight title bout in its main event.
Despite recent successes at lower weights, it seems the “heavies” often remain the biggest attraction in the fight games.
If that is significant — it’s good news for GLORY’s next event, which features a heavyweight title bout between champion Rico Verhoeven and Benjamin Adegbuyi. That show, GLORY 22, will take place June 5 in Lille, France.