Resounding Success Or Major Flop: US TV Ratings Reveal 100,000 Immediately Turned TV Off When NRL Came On

Resounding Success Or Major Flop: US TV Ratings Reveal 100,000 Immediately Turned TV Off When NRL Came On

Despite the NRL hailing the Las Vegas season openers a resounding success, US TV ratings have revealed that only 61,000 tuned into the first game between Manly and South Sydney, and only 44,000 watched the second match between Roosters & Brisbane.

To put these numbers into perspective, the prior program on Fox Sports 1, a college football match between Xavier and Georgetown, drew 162,000 viewers, meaning that 100,000 viewers switched channels when the NRL came on the air last Sunday.

NRL boss Andrew Abdo compared the numbers to Major League Soccer games on the network and said he was proud of the achievement no matter what the numbers say. “These are positive signs in the first year of the long-term venture,” he said. “We are proud of what we achieved this year in Las Vegas and have been blown away by how positively Americans have responded to rugby league”.

The reactions coming out of the game are just as confused as you might expect. Some pointed out that they didn’t understand the rules, with many questioning why a “touchdown” was not awarded for simply crossing the line and others not understanding the various forms of kicks, passes and penalties. Others enjoyed more than just the game’s action, with a few announcing their admiration for “tough” players who could play this game without pads or helmets. “They are all so tall and handsome,” one local told Fox League.

Despite the low numbers in the United States, the event was still a massive success back home, with thousands of Aussies travelling to Las Vegas for the event. The two games were also the most-watched games ever on Fox Sports, with over 800,000 tuning in for the exclusive first match. The second game received a national reach of 1.68 million on the Nine Network.




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