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.
A quick snippet from the Chicago Sun-Times reports:
UFC president Dana White said that he was disappointed with Chicago-based heavyweight Andrei Arlovski’s victory April 21 and that Arlovski is not next in line for a title shot. …
This is definitely a good thing. Personally I thought Dana White was nuts setting up title shots this far in advance: Couture vs Gonzaga isn’t going to happen until the end of August, meaning they’d have to put Arlovski on the shelves till late November. Not exactly a bad thing depending on your feelings about him lately.
I don’t like Tim Sylvia. Hell, no one likes Tim Sylvia, not even Jesus. But while it takes two to dance, it also takes two to make a really shitty fight. And at UFC70 we saw proof that it wasn’t just Tim Sylvia’s fault their third match sucked: Andrei Arlovski is just as capable of putting the house to sleep. Expect Arlovski to show up against Crocop next, for the same reasons Josh Koscheck is up against Georges St Pierre.
Yeah this is fanboy stuff. I know most of you probably haven’t even heard of Fabio Holanda, but he’s my BJJ teacher (not that I’m much of a student yet) so I’m excited for this news. The next MFC in Alberta will feature Holanda against Shaun Krysa in a lightweight showdown. Holanda’s last fight was a pretty awesome display against UFC fighter Sam Stout, so I’m sure he’ll go out and submit this guy easy.
UPDATE: In another bit of Six-Degrees-of-Fabio-Holanda related news, Kenny Florian’s opponent at UFC74 has been revealed as Alvin Robinson, who lost to Holanda last year at TKO26.
There’s only a few people in MMA that a really pity, and it extends to whoever fights Mirko Crocop next, and Josh Koscheck. Why Koscheck? Because just like the poor bastard who ends up in the ring with Crocop, he’s going to be in a ring with a very dangerous man with something to prove. Something violent to proove.
I find it funny that the Kos thinks this is a ‘reward’ for beating Diego Sanchez. Has Dana White booked any other serious contenders against his rebounding superstars? No. He gives them a free meal, a soft comeback. And while I’m sure Josh thinks he’s got the ability to hang with Georges St Pierre, the simple truth is he doesn’t. Ignoring all the fluke losses of late, I think we’ll see the same Georges St Pierre who routed nearly the entire welterweight division over the past two years. And that doesn’t bode well for Josh Koscheck.
Here’s a mass message I just got from Proelite.com:
I wanted you to be the first ones to know that we will be announcing on Monday that ProElite, Inc., the parent company of ProElite.com, has completed the filing process with the SEC to begin trading its stock on the open market. We are excited about this and hope for continued growth of the sport we love and ProElite.com. Check it out at: finance.yahoo.com/q?s=pele.pk
Past some quick and dirty financing, I have no idea why these fight companies keep turning to the stock market. The stock market doesn’t care about mixed martial arts. The stock market doesn’t even understand it. I think the best proof of this comes from an article in Barrons which states:
The question for investors is whether the sport is a fad, or an up-and-coming wrestling replacement.
You know things are bad when *at best* you’re a replacement for pro wrestling. For all the talk about mainstream acceptance, MMA still isn’t taken seriously as a real sport by the majority of institutions. Every major newspaper will report on horse racing and bike riding, but unless someone wants to write a hack op-ed piece, MMA ain’t getting covered.
Finally, there is the financial aspect of things : by starting big instead of building up, these companies are losing buckets of cash. Just once I’d like to see someone with big money come in and help an already established and respected group like Icon or King of the Cage steadily grow to the next level with a proper five year business plan that doesn’t involve losing nearly 10 million dollars a year.