UFC



  • I didn't say gsp wasn't a draw card I said he lacked personality and his fighting ability, streak, comebacks were never in question.
    Lesnar argument is that they gave a guy not grounded in MMA too much too soon and when he left so did a lot of the fans that came with him. He was a flash in the pan. I'm not saying he didn't bring good things with him I'm saying he was and is still their biggest ever draw card and he wasn't an in house product. Why this matters to answer your question is that it helps maintain the longevity of a fan base. Watching a guy come up and then create a long, storied career is what any fan wants isn't it?
    I'm not saying Brock was a mistake as much as it highlights the UFCs lack of in house talent and why they will struggle.
    I'd have to be a massive hypocrite to have a problem with Brock lesnar and then be a massive fern champion for SBW...

    Eh, "personality" hasn't really been his thing. Like any good babyface, he's always been the sympathetic guy up against assholes like Penn, Shields, Koscheck and Diaz.
     
    How's that a flash in the pan though? The casual fans were always going to leave when he left, that's what casual fans do. They were never going to stick around and watch a bunch of nobodies fight, just like casual boxing fans aren't going to stick around with boxing after Floyd Mayweather retires. That's how the fighting (or sports entertainment) business works.
     
    I don't think it matters at all where the UFC gets its stars from or how long they stick around, so long as they actually have them. Doesn't matter if they're built up from scratch like GSP or come from somewhere else like Lesnar, if they draw then that's the right option.



  • Considering the number of ho hum rugby matches at all levels served up every week I'm more than happy with how the UFC is evolving.
     
    Not every bout can be a classic.
     
    And it's only 9 minutes of your life after all.



  • This is pretty funny. Almost.
     
    How The UFC's Biggest Show Of The Year Turned Into A Fiasco
     
    [...]
     
     This is PED Inception.
     
    [...]

    The whole thing has to be read to be believed...



  • And I missed this. Ugh.

    UFC commentator announces Jonah Lomu as an “Australian Rules” football player
     
    WELL, this is one massive fail.
     
    During last night’s UFC Fight Night in Auckland, an American commentator made an embarrassing error when introducing one of New Zealand’s greatest sporting heroes.
     
    Fuelling the American stereotype of being completely ignorant about other countries, the US commentator announced, “Here tonight in attendance, Jonah Lomu of the All Blacks, one of the greatest Australian Rules Football players of all time.”
     
    Jonah Lomu is, of course, not one of our greatest AFL players, but rather one of the world’s greatest Rugby union players. You know, the sport that the All Blacks compete in.
     
    Not only did the commentator get that wrong, but he also pronounced Lomu’s last name wrong as well, calling him,“ Jonah La-boo.”
     
    Epic fail.



  • And I missed this. Ugh.

    He also repeatedly referred to the city in was in as "Oakland" New Zealand.



  • UFC Fight Night 45 was great start to finish, top to bottom.



  • And UFC Fight Night Dublin wasn't far behind.
     
    The crowd noise was phenomenal.



  • I’d take any article from Deadspin with a grain of salt but then I’m a bit of a UFC fanboy so anything I say is under suspicion. There are some significant problems for the UFC at the moment as its established stars either retire or have extended absences and the promotion moves from being PPV focussed to spreading itself over multiple distribution platforms. The UFC will have run six events in just over 30 days once this July 4th weekend’s double-header is done. That’s more than they ran in the whole of 2004. The expanded schedule is a topic of much debate and, unfortunately for the UFC, has coincided with the retirement of GSP and Anderson Silva (who have been the most bankable PPV stars of the past few years), long term injuries to Cain Velasquez, Anthony Pettis and Dominic Cruz (which has taken three titles out of circulation) and injuries to almost every other title holder causing fight delays and postponements in 2014. At this stage it doesn’t look like any title will be defended three or more times during 2014 which is what you’d like to see from a champion.  
     
    On the topic of developing stars, it seems strange to me to criticise the UFC for not developing stars while simultaneously criticising it for holding too many events. It seems to me that the best way to develop stars is to bring guys in and give them a chance to develop within the UFC rather than trying to sign/buy guys who have managed to build significant records in other organisations which brings its own set of problems. Creating stars, it isn’t an exact science - especially if you’re talking about fighters that are able to make an impression with the wider public as well as general sports fans or MMA fans. The right combination of skill, record, personality and timing rarely come together and the UFC, and any other promotion, can only do so much to try and identify and promote fighters who they think can become stars. The flip side of this is when fans feel like the UFC is pushing a certain fighter, giving them additional coverage and even preferential matchmaking they flip out.   
     
    As an aside, a group of us went to the Te Huna v Marquardt card last weekend and it was awesome. There was an interesting moment when, on trying to enter Vector, we were re-directed from the gate to the ticket office but instead finding that I’d stuffed the booking it was to upgrade us from the cheapest of the nosebleeds to the front row right where the fighters walked in 20 metres from the cage. Good fights - Soa v Rosholt aside - which showed that star power isn’t necessary for an entertaining card. Without the expanded schedule there’s no way that NZ would be getting a UFC card. As things stand, we might be getting a UFC card every couple of years and while we’re unlikely to get title fights or the biggest names, I think that this is preferable to no live NZ UFC events.
     
    Yes the expanded schedule has diluted PPVs, but on the flip side it means more fights. For those of us who like watching fights, this is mostly a good thing. There are only a few “special” events are year but that’s mostly been true in previous years.
    As Mike said, the last two Fight Nights have been really entertaining cards despite the lack of top-tier talent. I’m not sure if that has been good matchmaking, luck or, more likely a combination of the two.



  • Cruz was stripped of the Bantamweight title in January and Barao's interim title was upgraded to the proper title. And the only reason why that belt won't be defended three times this year is because Dillashaw beat the crap out of Barao. Their rematch in August will be the third time it's been on the line this year though and I'm expecting to see a fourth later in the year.
     
    While having more and more events may mean they're trying out way more fighters, it also means there's far less possibility of making a star. Why? Because there's less eyes watching most of those cards, so you can have a true star making performance like the one Matt Brown had against Eric Silva a few months ago and no-one comes out of it a star because it was stuck on Fight Pass, which only the super fans have.
     
    But regardless, yeah that Irish card was fucking awesome.



  • Totally right on the Bantamweight title being put up three times this year. I'll believe four when I see it.
    Matt Brown v Eric Silva was on Fox Sports rather than Fight Pass. I don't think they've had any US Fight Pass cards yet. Granted, Fox Sports doesn't have the reach of Fox or Spike but it's not behind an internet paywall.



  • Still plenty of time for a fourth fight after August, especially with so many champs out injured, though it could always slip into next year as well.
     
    Ah shit, you're right, the use of the Fight Night name for both Fox Sports and Fight Pass cards confused me. It's definitely a bit better than the internet paywall but still limits the amount of eyes watching it, especially since no casual fan is ever going to bother watching every UFC card. It just makes creating stars an even harder job to do.



  • With UFC 177 on 30 August a fourth Bantamweight title in 2014 would be a fairly quick turnaround for either Dillashaw or Barao. Especially when you consider that the opponent that makes the most sense regardless of who wins at UFC 177 is Dominic Cruz who would have to win his fight against Takeya Mizugaki at UFC 178 on September 27 and be in condition to fight again quickly which seems overly-optimistic given his recent history.
     
    You’re right that the lack of available champions may encourage the UFC to try and schedule a fourth Bantamweight title bout in 2014 with the champ versus Assuncao or any available top ten fighter just to fill out one of the December cards. Assuncao is an interesting fight for Dillashaw and a decent fight Barao (in Brazil at least) but not one that is going to get casuals super-interested.
     
    Which brings me back to the oversaturation, while casual fans (by definition) aren’t going to watch every card I was under the impression that ratings for the Fox Sports Fight Night main events were higher than most PPVs or the PPV prelims. I’d have thought that fighting in the five-round main event on a smaller card would be a better way to get casual fans interested in contenders than having the same fight as a three-rounder on the main card of a PPV.
     
     
    Gustaffson out and Cormier in to face Jon Jones at UFC 178 and they've also added McGregor v Poirier. The card is looking pretty stacked.
     
    Edit: Formatting



  • With UFC 177 on 30 August a fourth Bantamweight title in 2014 would be a fairly quick turnaround for either Dillashaw or Barao. Especially when you consider that the opponent that makes the most sense regardless of who wins at UFC 177 is Dominic Cruz who would have to win his fight against Takeya Mizugaki at UFC 178 on September 27 and be in condition to fight again quickly which seems overly-optimistic given his recent history.
     
    You’re right that the lack of available champions may encourage the UFC to try and schedule a fourth Bantamweight title bout in 2014 with the champ versus Assuncao or any available top ten fighter just to fill out one of the December cards. Assuncao is an interesting fight for Dillashaw and a decent fight Barao (in Brazil at least) but not one that is going to get casuals super-interested.
     
    Which brings me back to the oversaturation, while casual fans (by definition) aren’t going to watch every card I was under the impression that ratings for the Fox Sports Fight Night main events were higher than most PPVs or the PPV prelims. I’d have thought that fighting in the five-round main event on a smaller card would be a better way to get casual fans interested in contenders than having the same fight as a three-rounder on the main card of a PPV.
     
     
    Gustaffson out and Cormier in to face Jon Jones at UFC 178 and they've also added McGregor v Poirier. The card is looking pretty stacked.
     
    Edit: Formatting

    It's not that quick. Dillashaw vs Barao 1 was on May 24th, while Faber vs Barao was on Feb 1st. That's just under four months between Barao/Faber and Barao/Dillashaw 1 and just over 3 months between Barao/Dillashaw 1 and 2. With four months left in the year after UFC 177, I think there's a pretty decent chance they'll fit another one in there.
     
    As for the next contender, I'd go with Assuncao, yeah. I don't think there's any Bantamweight fight, outside of Cruz, that'll really get the casuals interested, but I think Cruz is probably a few wins off being in range of a shot and it depends entirely on how well he comes back. Three years is a long time in sports.
     
    Fox Sports Fight Night main events are higher than most current PPVs, but then that's not really an achievement these days. I'm just not sure how many of the people watching them are actually casual fans, since they're basically buying the Fox Sports channels specifically for UFC. There's a huge difference between those and the FOX cards (which typically get 2+ million viewers) or old Spike cards.
     
    Cormier vs Jones is actually a disappointing replacement in my eyes. Cormier has a knee injury that he was scheduled to get surgery on but he's put it on hold for the fight. That was one of the main reasons why Jones wanted to fight Cormier instead of Gustaffson in the first place. It's going to hurt his wrestling and his chances in the fight.
     
    McGregor vs Poirier should be great though.



  • Another solid card at Fight Night.
     
    Lawler v Brown was a cracker.



  • While it's not ideal that Cormier is taking the title shot on shaky knees it's an issue he's apparently had for a while and hasn't stopped him dominating all his opponents. At 35 I don't know whether there's time for Cormier to take 6-12 months off for surgery and then hope that the title picture works in his favour. Regardless, it's a fight I'm excited to see.
     
    Hard to complain about oversaturation with the quality of the last three cards and the UFC taking a mini-break until mid-August.





  • Pretty over the top from Jones and Cormier. The fight at the media day was a bit of a black eye for the sport and these comments just further inflame things, even if the mics weren't supposed to be live. While it wouldn't surprise me if Jones (or any other elite athlete or high achiever) was a sociopath IMO, he's just trying to get under Cormier's skin. Two alphas who don't like each other and won't back down.
     
    I think Jones will win in the Octagon but it remains to be seen who'll win the publicity war and whether it will result in more buys or end up turning people off.



  • I dunno. Michael Jordan was a wholesome front man but a nutcase behind closed doors in the locker room.
    I am happy to talk like a church boy to my customers but I'll be swearing up a storm with fuckwit suppliers and I climb into a trade if he so much looks at me wrong.
    Cormier isn't exactly doing himself any favours either.



  • It's not going to turn anyone off. Only people who weren't going to watch anyway.



  • I agree that it's (probably) not going to turn off people for this fight that were potential buyers but might have an effect on the long-term prospects of the sport with things like getting the MMA licenced in New York and fighters being able to attract top-flight sponsors.
     
    MMA always walks a line between sport and spectacle, martial art competition and brawling violence which is what makes it so compelling to some of us but also why it gets a fair bit of negative press (or no press at all).


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