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Telling Stats Tell Us Something…

MMAJunkie did a poll to find out if people actually go to MMA events. It found that 51% of fans hadn’t gone to a show in over 12 months. If the poll is accurate (this is internet polling, after all), it should definitely be a fucking wake up call to promoters thinking their events will do well.

Affliction, just months away from having their own event, doesn’t seem phased by reality. The fact that attendance at events generally sucks balls apparently isn’t all that important. I especially love this delusional quote:

“What we’re doing is bringing an entertainment aspect to it, as well,” he said. “Affliction is a lifestyle. We’re in the entertainment business, and that’s what we’re going to bring to it as well. We also have a live act that will be playing (at the event), which we’ll announce pretty soon.”

Silly me; here, I thought mixed martial arts was entertaining. Little did I realize that only Affliction is in this business. They have so much experience at it, too! Remember all those Affliction theme parks you went to? What about that day at the fair, when we rode on the Affliction rides? What a day that was…

They’re right about one thing: Affliction is a lifestyle. That is, if your life is all about wearing t-shirts of skeletons sporting top hats with pictures of skulls on them, with tiny angle skulls floating in the background. And as we all know, once you buy the clothing, you are locked in a Devil’s agreement to show up to any event they throw.

I’m not saying the Affliction card doesn’t look sweet. It does. But I actually find that this informal poll is showing a growing trend in mixed martial arts events. Increasingly, as we are saturated with event after event, our desire to drop mad dollars to see shows drops considerably. In this case, most of us choose to watch comfortably at home, where the view is better and the seats are cheaper. This wouldn’t be a big deal if smaller promotions had access to millions of pay-per-view buyers, but in truth, that isn’t very likely. Instead, this sport will continue to chew up and spit out even wealthy investors trying to break in.

My advice to Affliction: rather than risk all the money you make from stupid rednecks who pay 80 bucks for a shirt on throwing money-losing events, why don’t you go back to your old bread and butter, and ride the wave while it lasts. Fashion is fickle man. One day, your Megadeath look will be out, and shirts with ponies and rainbows will be in… and then, Fightlinker will rule all!

  • garth

    magic ponies with enzymes!

  • godzillad

    Ponies have Electrolytes

    Fightlinker: It’s what ponies crave!

  • Dangerfield

    They should have the Affliction show in Japan. Those guys fill stadiums

  • Wad

    The polling numbers might also not take into account the accessibility issues about MMA events. I’m a huge MMA fan and have been for many years, but I’ve never been to an event because they don’t exist in my neck of the woods. So, if you did a survey and asked if I had been to one in the last 12 months, I’d say no. But would I attend the first one that comes anyone remotely near my area without hesitation? Absolutely.

    In fact, last month there was to be an MMA event held in my town and I was at the store ready to purchase tickets for my good woman and myself and then I found out that the municipality had gone back and cancelled the permit to host MMA and turned it into a boxing/kickboxing event. I wouldn’t mind too much seeing a kickboxing fight, but it was reason enough for me to not even go. I wasn’t there to drop $40 on tickets to see kickboxing. And the fighters had been training for MMA fights for the whole time and found out like a week or two before fight night that it was a no-go. Really lame.

    Anyways, if there were more events in places accessible to fans, the number would be higher.

  • Captain

    Move to the city, fella.

  • nem0

    Accessibility is a big stumbling block, as is the cost of tickets. If I pool my money with 9 like-minded fans, I can watch a show for about 10 bucks between PPV fees, beer, and snacks.

    I’m lucky, though, in that there’s a regional promotion that throws pretty decent events in my town 2-3 times a year. On the other hand, short of my dad winning the lotto or a huge asbestos settlement, I’m not going to make it to a live pro-level event anytime soon.

  • Jose Bastillo

    I can’t believe they’re going to do a live musical act and think it’s a good idea. Obviously they failed to do their research here because people hate that shit when they’re at the fights. Just look at what a horrible idea it is to have DJ Shitty hosting those EXC events, he sucks and makes the entire experience feel like a crappy MTV show (which is any MTV show). I know, we were at one. Not too mention it got a ton of bad press as well as the fans who voiced their displeasure with it.

    Also, they are bound to alienate anyone that hates the shitty music they pick. Not everyone likes rap, or metal, or DJ Shitty. Hearing it live make it even worse. Most live music, even when it’s one of your favoirte songs, sounds like your grandpa taking a dump. It just sucks.

    Here’s a clue for them: Everyone there will like fights… that’s why they bought a ticket and showed up. Put your money into other fight related shit, not Fantasy Land at the Affliction theme park.

  • Jemaleddin

    The UFC doesn’t come to Maryland (and I couldn’t make the New Jersey show) but there are have been a bunch of small local shows in DC and Virginia. Unfortunately all the ones I’ve gotten tickets for were cancelled before they even finalized the card. That sorta cuts down on the events I attend.

  • ChinBo

    Live music at an event has been done before. I have seen almost every major MMA show since the sport began (not live of course). Live bands were tried in the original WFA (remember Fight Club meets Night Club?

  • TKO Todd

    Dunno about anyone else, but I just can’t afford to drop 2 or 3 paychecks for one ticket. So I just sit back pay for the PPV’s I want to see.

  • DamonD

    Vegas isn’t accessible? They practically will pay YOU to fly there…and then let you drink for free.

  • Throken

    Wasn’t Bodog selling a lifestyle?

  • JackalAss

    Dammit throken, you beat me to it! and we all saw how many people bought into the bodog lifestyle.

    The events I’ve been to in Vancouver here both featured some unknown rapper, trying to get the crowd pumped. That may have been alright for all the little whiggers in the audience, but a huge portion of them just up and went for a drink/smoke/piss/ bad-rapperless break when they came on. Too varied an audience.

    Vegas won’t fly you there, they’ll only give you free booze while you’re gambling, and the tickets to the UFC fights are so goddamned expensive. Plus, you gotta put up with all the meatheads that’re there to sport their affliction shirts, or be seen at the ‘in’ thing.

  • Dr. Gonzo

    People just stare at the screens at the UFC events anyways. Scrap of $20 to go see the grass-roots shows and stay at home for the UFC (although I would recomend seeing one of them in your life).

  • MMA-Elite

    Who was that other promotion saying shit about being a lifestyle?? Oh ya, Bodog, how’d that work out for them?

  • Geoff

    I’m in the percentage that has never had an MMA event in their city. I think this accounts for more MMA fans than that poll may take into consideration. I’m not gonna travel to Halifax from Fredericton to see Joe Blow fight TUF Quarter Finalist. Also I would’ve gone to the Montreal UFC but my dreams were crushed by scalpers(that killed my parents out here in the wilderness) and I could not buy a ticket thanks to some internetz thing.

  • Jeremy (not that Jeremy)

    Wait, are these “angel skulls” or “(Kurt) Angle skulls”?

  • Mister Akme

    All promotions need BIG screens on all 4 sides above the ring…not across the ring

  • Johny

    Ozzy Osbourne rules!

  • andres

    So there having ozzy play?
    Bad ass that be cool pay for the ppv see ozzy play and aleks fight godanm
    The only fights I’ve seen live where the friday firsy break barthroom brawls and does hands down were way better than any ufc that I’ve seen in the past mind it I said past 70 and on ufc up’d the ante

  • andres

    So there having ozzy play?
    Bad ass that be cool pay for the ppv see ozzy play and aleks fight godanm
    The only fights I’ve seen live where the friday first break barthroom brawls and does hands down were way better than any ufc that I’ve seen in the past mind it I said past 70 and on ufc up’d the ante

  • Elfenstein

    a lot of mma fans live far away from events , i see people talk about taking a flight etc – but it all adds up lots of dollars.

    i was considering going to ufc in england (me living in norway) but the ticket prices at the event made me stay home ..

  • Gaston

    How much is a decent spot at an UFC event? If they are as expensive as I´d image I´m not surprised that people only attend once in a great while and watch the rest at home

  • Beau

    I’ve never been to a live event. I live in Atlanta and we’re getting our first show in the city ever at Phillips Arena on May 30th. There have been a few small shows within driving distance of me but I’ve never bothered going because I was broke in college. Now that I’m not broke and working full time I’ll start going. I think they should be impressed that 49% of fans have been to an event considering that a lot of the fans don’t live anywhere near mma shows. Or how about everyone in New York? They can’t really go see mma unless they live close to Jersey.

  • Dr. Gonzo

    I paid $150 for descent tickets. The most I paid was $200. You really cant describe the experience at UFC when they play Baba Oreily. It an awesome experience but for now on I am staying home. Dare I say…I like the commentating…

  • Jersey Tomato

    I have never paid to attend a live event but I don’t rule it out for the future. Presently I am content to pay the $45 to watch from the comfortable confines of my living room where I do not have to worry about some drunk-ass Neanderthal spilling beer on me and then giving me shit when I tell him watch it. That would probably make me want to tell him where to go which would only make matters worse but why should I care since I am joined by five of my closest (and most inebriated) buddies who will throw down at the slightest hesitation. Me? I am a pacifist and would never start a fight in public unless it was with my old lady. Especially if she hit me first….

  • andres

    hahaha im surrounded by lazy bitches who never want to fight while me on the other hand don’t give a shit!