Ben Johns raises his trophy in front of the crowd.
The mixed doubles and women's singles finals from the Mesa Arizona Cup were broadcast on FOX. PPA Tour

Pickleball reaches over half a million in FOX slot

DALLAS, TX - It was already pretty cool that Championship Sunday coverage of the Carvana Mesa Arizona Cup made it on FOX.

It’s even cooler now that ratings and viewership data are available.

According to Sports Media Watch, the PPA’s two-hour broadcast of the mixed doubles and women's singles gold medal matches brought in 501,000 viewers. That made it Sunday’s 18th most-watched sporting event and gave an overall rating of 0.29, good for 17th on the day.

With those viewership numbers, pickleball outpaced installments of NCAA men’s basketball (378,000) and MLB spring training on ESPN (392,000), PGA Tour action on Golf Channel (469,000), and NHL action on TNT (265,000). 

A graph comparing the viewership of various sporting events this weekend.
Pickleball coverage on FOX brought in greater viewership (501,000) than a number of other sporting events over the weekend and finished as the 18th-most watched sporting event on Sunday. This graph does not include events that had viewership higher than 501,000 and should therefore not be taken as an accurate representation of the weekend's viewership rankings. Full rankings can be found here.
PPA Tour

This tells us that people—a lot of people, actually—will watch pro pickleball if it’s available on mainstream channels like FOX and ESPN.

Let’s hope the sport continues to carve out premium airtime in the future.