There’s a saying in business: Timing is everything. Zuffa timed the official release of their UFC73 lineup to coincide with the Mayweather-De La Hoya fight in an attempt to highlight the difference between shitty boxing cards and UFC cards. It was a smart move and good timing; the story was picked up by a lot of fight community bloggers and columnists. However, that timing is now coming back to bite them in the ass.
Just a few days later UFC72 was switched from a free event on SpikeTV to PPV. There’s a whole controversy over who’s decision that was, with the UFC bluntly stating it was Spike’s decision and Spike slyly stating that they “never didn’t not want to not show UFC72 … not”. Spike is lying through their teeth, but I’ll get into that in another post. For now, the ramifications are pretty simple: the UFC has put all it’s pay per view eggs in one stacked basket, leaving UFC72 with a rotten egg no one wants to pay for.
You can’t deny that UFC72 got the shaft because of Zuffa brass’ plan to air it on free TV. I don’t think there has been a less impressive UFC PPV card in years. What I wonder is if they hadn’t released UFC73’s lineup for the Mayweather/De La Hoya fight, would they have transfered some of 73’s weight onto the ailing 72? It wouldn’t have taken much … move one of the two title bouts over and you’ve magically got a card that people wouldn’t call a ripoff. Or perhaps just move Nog vs Herring, which is something no one wants to miss (despite all their bitching and whining about it).
Anyways, I’m sure Zuffa is now looking at the silver lining in all of this: UFC72 is a perfect test to see how many PPV buys they can get with a shitty card.