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There’s a lot more going on with UFC79 than just the fights happening in the Octagon. The event is Zuffa’s last big hurrah for the year and if it doesn’t go off large, the implications could be pretty big:

From a business and media perspective, with pay-per-view numbers down slightly for the year and the perception, real or perceived, that the industry has cooled off, the company could use a strong pay-per-view number to close the year. should have a complete story on the the company’s pay-per-view numbers for the year next week, however, the company likely needs 600,000+ buys on Saturday to have a shot at beating HBO Boxing for the year.

The race is about far more than just bragging rights as much of this year’s gushing media coverage is largely built on last year’s record setting year on pay-per-view, including the beating boxing storyline. It has been said before, but momentum is self-perpetuating and the company has benefited tremendously from the mainstream media exposure that has resulted from its perceived momentum. If the media stops seeing the sport as the next big thing it could become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

I don’t think we have to worry about the sport going into decline any time soon … as Dana White has said, the UFC doesn’t ‘need’ mainstream acceptance to succeed. But as far as growing the sport goes, it’s kinda important. On the other hand, you could argue that MMA has grown way too quickly over the past two years, and a speed bump or two so things slow down and get evaluated could be just what the sport needs.

There was a press conference today to hype up UFC79, and one thing that came out of it was this interesting news:

Some people have questioned whether or not St. Pierre has had sufficient time to prepare for Hughes as he took the fight on three weeks notice. Accord to St. Pierre, taking the fight on short notice was not an issue as he was already in excellent shape. “I was actually training for the Olympic Games. For the tryout for the Olympic wrestling, I was in amazing shape and I had the best training camp of my life. A lot of guys came down, every round I was fighting a fresh guy all the time so I trained myself to fight an army so one man will never break me down.”

Well holy shit, Georges St Pierre is trying to get himself on the Canadian Olympic team? That’s pretty awesome, I must say. It doesn’t surprise me all that much either … word from everyone on the block is he’s definitely got the skills to back up the attempt. I just hope he doesn’t pull a Kid Yamamoto and take a break from MMA in order to fulfill his Olympic dreams. Considering all these stupid Olympic guys trying to make the jump to MMA, it’d be kinda refreshing to see it go the other way. WAR GSP!

Dana White has officially confirmed that the UFC will be hitting up Montreal in April. The rumored date is the 19th, although that wasn’t a lock during the interview. Regardless, it looks like we’ve got some serious planning to do because there’s no way in hell the UFC’s gonna roll through Fightlinker’s backyard without us lighting shit up like a motherfucker.

So I just wanted to put people on notice: if you live within 10 hours of Montreal, you’re officially being DRAFTED, and must show up or risk missing a once in a lifetime experience. We plan on organizing some epic tomfoolery throughout the entire weekend, and it’s going to be one fucking hell of a good time.

It’s another travel day for me as I leave the US and return to the frozen wastelands of Canada … well, semi-frozen because apparently it’s raining in Toronto, which is where I’m “flying into”. Quotes around that last part because if it’s really raining then I’m more fucked than an alter boy in a Catholic church, and I’ll be lucky to get home in time for UFC 79.

But rather than leave you all hanging, I’ve decided to do all my writing several hours in advance and space it out over the course of the day. So if anything earth shattering happens between now and eeeeer whenever the fuck my flight gets me back to Montreal, know that I’m stuck somewhere in an airport stubbornly refusing to pay twelve bucks for wireless access. So you’re on your own. Can you handle it? No? Well too bad for you.

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