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A grab bag of UFC-related headlines for the MMA notebook

By Zach Arnold | November 15, 2010

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I would remiss in forgetting to note that Josh Gross has left Sports Illustrated and is now at ESPN. Loretta Hunt’s writings are now showing up at The LA Times.

Jorge Rivera says he is going to face Michael Bisping in February for UFC’s Australia event. Really?

Dana White has indicated that we will not see a trilogy fight between Frank Mir and Brock Lesnar. Who will Lesnar face next? BTW, I find it interesting that the reports about the UFC 121 (Lesnar/Velasquez) buy rate indicate around a million buys with the Hispanic demographic up but the other demographics down.

UFC 122 drew 8,421 for an approximate $600,000 gate in Olberhausen, Germany. UFC hopes homegrown fighters will convince skeptical Germans. Marshall Zelaznik still stands by the notion of UFC having 4 ~ 6 UK events in 2011.

People Magazine notes that Chuck Liddell recently got engaged.

Steven Seagal training with Lyoto Machida? I think the PR is interesting for UFC 123. Machida should undoubtedly be the favorite in the fight. Speaking of favorites, BJ Penn is a slight favorite going into his fight against Matt Hughes. Hughes says he is having the time of his life right now and is happy for the upcoming paycheck.

A report from this past weekend’s MMA World Expo in New York.

An interview with Rich Franklin.

Today’s press conference with Sadaharu Tanigawa of K-1 and Sengoku officials came across as ‘big brother helping out little brother’, but the problem with that scenario is that K-1’s stature is rapidly declining.

An interesting article at Esquire talking about the future of boxing when Manny Pacquiao retires.

The Guardian (UK) newspaper gives EA Sports MMA four stars. A positive review.

Topics: K-1, Media, MMA, UFC, UK, Zach Arnold | 19 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

19 Responses to “A grab bag of UFC-related headlines for the MMA notebook”

  1. 45 Huddle says:

    1) One more reason to never go to ESPN.com again.

    2) Why the hype for Jorge Rivera? He doesn’t even deserve to be fighting Michael Bisping. And Bisping isn’t exactly that great….

    3) 1 Million buys is still 1 Million buys no matter how you look at it. A very good buyrate. Keep in mind that UFC PPV numbers today are very different then numbers from even 3 years ago. There are many forms of revenues for the PPV’s these days (especially the bigger ones). Yahoo!, Roku, Bars, and movie theaters are all various ways people can watch the events that give the UFC money without increasing the buyrate by 1. I just hope the fighters contracts are being set-up to give them money on the buys that aren’t just on PPV.

    4) Germany has been a bust for the UFC. Probably not worth entering that market again for a while.

    5) EA MMA will be $35 as a doorbuster on Black Friday at Best Buy. It’s one of like 4 or 5 EA games that is being placed at this price. That’s really quick to give almost a 50% price cut. Not good.

    • 45 Huddle says:

      http://www.sherdog.com/news/news/Now-Healthy-Werdum-Eyes-Fight-in-Japan-or-Abu-Dhabi-28126

      Werdum doesn’t want his next fight to be in Strikeforce. And contractually, he can do that.

      What a cluster-f#ck the Strikeforce Heavyweight Division has become.

      Since Werdum beat Fedor, they have basically put the division on hold with not one meaningful fight taking place. And now nobody actually wants to fight there.

      This is a perfect example of how “competition” is hurting the sport. Most fans would be better of seeing Strikeforce fold and having these fighters either face the UFC schedule or become irrelevent.

      • Zach Arnold says:

        When I saw that headline this morning, I was laughing for a few minutes. I really couldn’t believe what I was reading.

      • robthom says:

        It certainly is a tease.

        But if SF didn’t have all these guys under open contracts creating the potential to make these fights, they’d be scattered all over without much potential for them at all.

        So its a bit of a tease, but you have to ask yourself if that is worth the possibility instead of no possibility at all.

        Would you rather be friends with a fine unavailable chick and hope for that chance in hell, or just give it up and avoid all that frustration all together?

        • 45 Huddle says:

          Half of the guys would be signed by the UFC, and the rest of them would be irrelevent. And those guys in the UFC would be fighting much more often in relevent fights.

          Having 4 or 5 Top 20 guys literally doing nothing for 9+ months is a joke. There is no way to justify it,

        • Robthom says:

          Well the UFC had Werdum.
          They screwed that up.

          They cant get Fedor because apparently he/his management wont subject to that work load no matter how much money they offer him.

          Overeem is a false issue.

          They had a few years to snatch up Sergei and didn’t.
          But got Yvel instead for some reason (Cheaper?).

          barnett is way more trouble and effort then he’s actually worth.
          I dont want to see him or tito in the UFC.

          The only guy who UFC never had a chance at who would be an asset is Bigfoot.

          For one reason or another these guys are all outside of the UFC, and not because SF can outbid UFC.

          So its a good thing to have fewer hurdles inbetween them facing eachother by them all being losely tied to SF IMO.

          I hope some of these fights happen, You cant say never since Fed finally faced Verdum 3-4 years after he should have.

  2. cutch says:

    Germany is a new market, they should have held off Cro Cop-Mir or Kampmann-Shields and tried to get the nearby Croatian or Danish crowd to travel to support their countryman.

    It’s not that far to travel from those countries and is basically in the middle of Europe and a large percentage of the country are from non German descent.

  3. Zack says:

    Troll, troll, troll your boat…

  4. liger05 says:

    I thought when Oscar De La Hoya quit that was the end of boxing as there were no other stars? Lets stop this talk already.

    • Fluyid says:

      I was actually clicking on this link to post the same thing. ODLH was supposed to be boxing’s last star. I think he was the first one that MMA fans latched on to as the person keeping MMA from pushing boxing completely into the trash bin.

      Let’s just hope that both sports flourish and let that be that.

      Those of us who have been around long enough know that there have been many, many “last star” boxers, after which boxing was to fade completely away.

      • edub says:

        “Let’s just hope that both sports flourish and let that be that.”

        Here here!

        • Zack says:

          Agreed.

          And Pac Man wasn’t even on the radar when everyone was saying “Boxing is dead after ODLH retires.” But the ODLH/PBF made PBF a star, and Manny came up.

          Both are totally different and draw different audiences. Theres more crossover from UFC & WWE than there is UFC & boxing anyway.

    • 45 Huddle says:

      Let me play devil’s advocate for a minute here….. And this is US based, not world based….

      1) Boxing’s presence on free TV continues to dwindle from decade to decade.

      2) Boxing PPV’s have basically been relegated to 2 or 3 big one a years with basically nothing else remotely hitting the radar.

      3) The average boxing audience is getting older and older. The “next generation” of fans…. That crucial 18 to 34 aged fanbase, are now very much UFC fans.

      If a boat hits an large iceberg, it might not sink right away. But the damage is still there that will eventually force it to the bottom of the ocean. Just because it stays afloat in the meantime, doesn’t mean that the sink won’t happen.

      All of the pieces are in place for that fall in boxing. The decline continues to happen. Yes, it is happening much slower then many MMA fans inticipated, but that downward slope over the longhaul has already happened and continues to happen….

      • I don’t think any MMA fans anticipated a former flyweight from the Philippines selling more PPVs than any other single fighter in the world in any combat sport. Or boxing fans, for that matter. They may not anticipate the next star either.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          But the infrastructure that this amazing Philipino is currently operating in continues to show a decline. At some point, that next potential star just won’t have a platform to breakthrough on. And many indicators are showing this downward trend over years….

        • It declines as he sells more PPVs than his predecessor! What a dichotomy.

          I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see that HBO ends up making more money this year than the years where they ran PPVs out the ass and burned the hell out of the fanbase (2004/2005) because they’ve saved the money and committed it to make bigger fights. The way that HBO essentially forced Williams/Martinez II to happen indicates to me a different strategy than years past, and I think its gonna be not only beneficial to the fans but to the sport in general.

        • The Gaijin says:

          “It declines as he sells more PPVs than his predecessor! What a dichotomy.”

          No offense 45 – this isn’t even directed at you at all (I just happened to read an article on Bloody Elbow – don’t ask why I went to a site with the intellectual toilet paper that comprises their readership) but it continues to blow my mind that people that don’t watch or know anything about boxing are such “experts” on the business and future of boxing. 99% of mma fans are know nothing idiots when it comes to anything about boxing and don’t have a sweet f##king clue about what they’re talking about. So many of them spout off based on nothing more than Dana White’s party line and each other’s rubbish…it’s a shame they don’t just keep their mouths shut instead of opening their mouths and displaying their complete ignorance.

  5. robthom says:

    Hmmm, I kinds feel like I should be bothered or concerned about Machida + Segal.

    But Machida is a weirdo.

    If drinking pee (possibly only the tip of the iceberg of things that he’s into that we dont know about) didn’t jinx him a long time ago, then role playing with Steven Segal probably isn’t enough to do it now.

    He’s probably developed a strong jinx resistance.

    I’d like to see Franklin/Marquardt.

    We already saw that Marq wasn’t everything we hoped he was against chael.
    Now he’s looking like he might not even be what we had unhappily lowered our expectations to.

    He needs to get litmus tested again.

    The first results may have been skewed.

    • fd says:

      Marquardt is exactly what he’s always been – a guy with decent offense on the feet, decent GnP, mediocre wrestling, and zero bottom game.

      The only reason anybody thought Marquardt was any better than he was is that there are only like three guys at middleweight in the UFC who can actually wrestle, so he managed to avoid fighting anyone who could exploit his obvious flaws.

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