Expansion, expansion, expansion
Dana White recently announced a Japan event. Yes, the UFC is coming back to Japan after a prolonged absence (not counting the Pride Debacle) it’s been many years since the UFC has been in Japan. Here’s where the news gets interesting, Dana is planning to have the Japan show air live for free in North America before a planned PPV scheduled in Las Vegas. You read that right, 2 UFC events in one day. Something Dana has been promising for a few years now. The UFC’s plans to conquer the world are taking effect as we speak. Fist was version’s of TUF heading to the Philippines and other international markets, now it’s 2 shows in 2 different countries on the same day. Big things are about to happen to our beloved sport.
At this point, I must ask, is it too early to saturate the marked with multiple shows from the same promotion? Baseball/basketball/Football/Soccer all do it, why shouldn’t an MMA promotion? Well, in this particular case, I think the big difference is that those other sports air the games live and free. You don’t have to figure out which event you want to watch and if those events are in your budget. I know, the Japan show is gonna be free, leading into the PPV. How long do you think that will last? If it’s successful, why wouldn’t they run multiple PPV’s from multiple locations in one day? Dana has said they will be doing just that in the future.
I think it’s a way to over saturate the market, forcing fans of the product to choose between cards. We will start seeing the weaker cards getting less PPV buys and it may harm careers. The flip side is, we may see better cards, stacked with exciting match-ups, more title defenses etc. to entice fans into purchasing multiple PPV’s in the same day. Imagine if they hold an Anderson Silva title fight in Brazil and a Heavyweight title fight in the US (inset your favorite HW’s), would yoyu buy both? We are talking about over $120.00 in PPV’s on a Saturday night, not to mention how many hours. Plus all of the pre-lims, we could be talking 8 hours of fight programming. In theory, 8 hours of MMA sounds fantastic, until you add in the cost. If you normally budget for 1-2 PPV’s per month, and now there are 4+ PPV’s, what do you do? In this current economy, how many households can sustain this PPV model? Can you? I can’t.
Rumble young man Rumble