While we will never know the truth of the matter, the lone source for UFC pay-per-view figures has and always will be, Mr. Dave Meltzer.
When people talk of buys, stating this PPV did this amount and this one did that, it is all based on his industry intelligence. The UFC never confirms figures, nor do the broadcasters, however, Meltzer’s time in the PPV business has gone on way before the UFC existed and therefore his estimates and contacts are widely considered as valid and on point.
With that being said, here is what he said via his subscription based newsletter about UFC 152: Jones vs. Belfort.
[box_light]Preliminary numbers from UFC 152 are 450,000 to 460,000 buys. Keep in mind these are still early numbers and can vary greatly. It’s at the low end of expectations. I think the key here is that the six weeks between shows really didn’t make a difference. It’s considerably down from Jon Jones’ last fight. Obviously Vitor Belfort wasn’t going to draw as his opponent like Rashad Evans because you had no grudge match and betrayal storyline. But this looks to be less than Lyoto Machida. I really don’t think all the publicity was going to keep people from buying, but one thing is pretty much for sure. All that publicity didn’t either make him a bigger marquee star, nor did it create a situation where he sold more because people would buy to see him beat up. The only people buying to see him beat up were the same people buying to start with.[/box_light]