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PRIDE’s triangulation

By Zach Arnold | September 27, 2006

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By Zach Arnold

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a definitive article about what I thought PRIDE’s attempted business plan would be in regards to Las Vegas and China. You can read that article here. Read it first, as it lays the ground work for what was reported in Daily Sports on Thursday.

The newspaper reports that PRIDE will have Mike Tyson fight in a boxing match on the Chinese gambling island of Macau on 12/31, with the match airing live in the arena at Saitama Super Arena. The newspaper reports that the Tyson appearing in Macau is being backed by casino money. Everything that was predicted in the original article I wrote two weeks ago is what PRIDE is now officially attempting to do.

Update: In an excellent column on ESPN.com, Dan Rafael writes that Mike Tyson is still under contract to Showtime and that this may cause problems for PRIDE and others wanting to put Tyson’s exhibition boxing matches on TV or PPV.

One potential issue that could keep Tyson from participating is an exclusive Showtime contract, under which Tyson still owes the network at least one more fight. According to those with knowledge of the deal, the contract forbids Tyson from engaging in any kind of unarmed combat sports — exhibition or not — without the network’s involvement or permission.

McPherson said he has heard that, but no one has talked to him about it.

“It was brought to my attention, but why hasn’t anyone called to tell me that? No one has called or said anything,” he said. “I talked to [Tyson’s ex-wife] Monica [Turner] about it. I don’t think Showtime has exhibitions in that clause. Remember, this ain’t a fight. It’s an exhibition, like he’s going to the gym. They can’t stop him from going to the gym.

Topics: All Topics, Boxing, Japan, Media, MMA, PRIDE, Zach Arnold | 8 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

8 Responses to “PRIDE’s triangulation”

  1. MonkeyMatt says:

    Well whoopdey doo. Waddya want, a medal?

    Just kidding. Right on the money, good call.

  2. Tony says:

    Way to toot your own horn!

    Just kidding…I read the article and it was very interesting. We’ll see if Pride can make this happen. I’m surprised Tyson matters to anyone anymore.

  3. b says:

    You keep patting yourself on the back this hard and you’re going to pull something.

  4. kw says:

    Zaah, nice call bro! What sucks about your accuracy is that if your predictions keep coming true, the NYE eve show will be Pride’s last 🙁

  5. Zach Arnold says:

    Pardon the casino cliche, but trying to predict how the Japanese do business is like playing roulette and winning 10 bets in a row.

  6. BSP says:

    While I sometimes think you’re a bit overly pessimistic about Pride, you really have done an excellent job covering the Japanese scene. Kudos for your quality reporting and the voodoo-like accuracy of your predictions.

    (Of course, like KW, I sincerely hope you’re wrong about NYE being Pride’s final show.)

    Keep up the great work. You’re a real asset to the MMA community — especially to those interested in more than just the UFC. I do wish my fellow Pride nuthuggers would cut you some slack.

  7. Preach says:

    I’m not quite sure if i’d say that Pride’s NYE show will be it’s last, but if their american debut flops and they don’t manage to get a deal with a good tv-network which pours the same amount of cash into the promotion as Fuji TV did, it could very well be that we will witness the end of “this” Pride FC, meaning that they will continue to operate, but on a much smaller scale, resulting in downsizing on fighter pay, their roster and entrance stages.

  8. Zach Arnold says:

    The big question right now about PRIDE after New Year’s Eve is whether or not they can get heavy backing from casino money.

    Consider that statement for a moment. We are talking about a company that in six months: a) loses their major Japanese free TV deal, b) is forced to change or alter their marketplace direction, and c) is forced or put into a position to entirely change their financial structure.

    I can’t recall a bigger fight company having to undergo this kind of transformation (or attempted transformation) ever. What a monumental task it is going to be.

  9. […] It sure looks like former boxing heavyweight champion Mike Tyson was undergoing rigorous training for his upcoming PRIDE fight in Macau, which was to be part of PRIDE’s triangulation plan to make inroads into the casino world. […]

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