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UFC 150 does shit PPV numbers, Dana and Lorenzo still livin’ large

There’s lots of talk in MMA land about the piss poor pay per view (PPV) numbers recorded for UFC 150 – 190,000 according to guesstimator extraordinaire, Dave Meltzer. The sky is falling, it’s the Second Coming, the Rapture is upon us, and blah, blah, etc. The truth is that it doesn’t matter.

The UFC is a privately held company. There are four owners: The Fertitta Bros, Dana White, and that sheik dude from Abu Dhabi. They don’t have to mail out dividends checks to hundreds of major shareholders. Even a disappointing figure like this one brings in roughly $10 mil in PPV dollars. After the venue gets paid, the PPV companies take their cut, fighter payouts, company payroll, taxes, insurance, advertising, legal, and the dozens of other expenses every company in the world has, there’s still that little thing left over called profit, and it’s some sweet stank. Even if there’s only a mil left over, that’s nice cheese to spread around for a few weeks work.

And for every few crappy selling PPV’s like 147 (175,000 PPV), 149 (235,000 PPV), and 150, there’s a 151 (with a main event of Jon Jones vs Dan Henderson this is at least a 600,000 PPV), or better yet, a 148 (1,000,000 PPV). That’s where they really make their paper. This year alone, with over three and a half million PPV’s sold, the UFC has grossed roughly $182 million in PPV dollars alone, and this is considered a bad year thus far. So maybe this week D White can’t get a new Ferrari or piss away a few hundred grand playing blackjack, but he can next week. It’s kind of like the National Lampoon’s franchise. For every Van Wilder there are a few unwatchable pieces of shit.

But of course the great PPV debate is not about Lorenzo and Dana having to subsist on ramen noodles. It’s about the specters of stagnation and over-saturation. Stagnation is a mild concern. Yes, PPV sales are not great, but lest we forget we’re still kind of in the midst of this whole global economic crisis thang, and consumers are being more discriminating with their dollars. It may end, it may not. If it doesn’t, I can assure you the UFC’s PPV buy rate will be the least of our concerns.

As for over-saturation, that remains to be seen. As long as the UFC is profitable why wouldn’t they flood the market with a product they want to reach the most possible people? The FOX deal is still in its infancy, and barring a public relations catastrophe like Joe Rogan’s neck veins exploding on national television or Ronda Rousey, Meisha Tate, and Cyborg getting caught in a three-way on YouPorn, the deal will be a great success in time. The one thing the UFC has proven time and again is they know what the fuck they’re doing. They’re playing chess, not checkers.

  • Reverend Clint

    UFc still wins when the fans lose

  • TheButtStrangler

    “The sky is falling, it’s the Second Coming, the Rapture is upon us, and blah, blah, etc.”

    Oh, I certainly fucking hope so!

    The more the Zuffa bottom line succeeds, the worse Joe Silvas matchmaking gets.

    We need to get back to that happy middle ground.


    Good time to be an up-and-coming fighter on the local circuit. Lot easier to get picked up by the UFC with all the cards they’re putting on and the high number of guy dropping out of fights due to injury.

  • TheButtStrangler

    I agree that the UFC monopoly has very real attributes.

    But I’m just as sure that silva is failing as a matchmaker!

    And that Dana has gone a little bit chomo…

  • iamphoenix
  • iamphoenix

    where did my comment go?

  • Letibleu

    Penix, your comment is right here:

    iamphoenix says:
    August 18, 2012 at 4:58 am

    I was updating my tumblr and I thought what if i make a series about Dana and Lorenzo butt raping their fans with overpriced watered down PPV cards. But then I remembered fans have streams as a way to give the middle finder back.

  • voice of reason

    ‘The more the Zuffa bottom line succeeds, the worse Joe Silvas matchmaking gets.’

    but it’s not just to do with the more money they get,
    Joe silva matchmaking has been downhill since chuck jardine, silva cote, etc.

    I always say ‘Good matchups make themselves (who doesn’t wanna see silva jones etc, its common sense) but bad matchups need Joe Silva to happen

  • noiseless

    so dudes started to talk their way into fights.

  • G Funk

    Van Wilder was a heaping pile of anal-sex shart skank. mmmmm

    Is Tony tight-ass an easily amused barely legal, hairless, sweet-delicious young man?

  • Reverend Clint

    i think joe silva has given up on life

  • frickshun

    Once guys are rich, getting richer isn’t nearly as important as making their business bigger. They’ll never be as profitable as they were a few years ago but that’s okay as long as they expand their “empire.” Same thing happened with my company & the owners are NOT losing sleep.

  • kvelertak

    Lets face it.. everybody calls Dana and the F brothers good business men.. but they fucked up the fox deal so far.

    1. They didn’t put Ben vs Guida on the first fox card.
    2. They tried to skimp buy with no-namers on all the other fox cards or boring fights.
    3. They are watering down their PPVs too much.

    They need to get their shit together.

  • Reverend Clint

    hopefully the casual fans dont get burned out on shitty fights