Dana White to CNBC: UFC First Quarter up 20%
UFC President spoke with CNBC’s Darren Rovell and touted the UFC”s First Quarter results for 2009:
White gave us a never before released number to prove it, saying that business was up 20 percent in the first quarter of 2009 compared to the first quarter of 2008.
Much of the increase in quarter over quarter results can be traced back to the PPV success of UFC 94: Penn vs GSP 2, which generated nearly a million buys on PPV. This was a net increase of around 300k buys over the highest selling PPV in the First Quarter of 08 (Lesnar vs Mir). The UFC also benefited from higher than normal numbers for their Franklin Henderson card from their UK Division. Other items, like their deal with Topps also came to fruition during this time period, opening up additional revenue streams. The UFC can also look forward to a higher than normal result for the second or third quarter of 2009, depending on when revenue from the UFC Undisputed 2009 video game is booked.
White also hinted at his strategy when enticing sponsors on the corporate level for the UFC:
“Look our ratings in the 18-34’s,” White said. “We outrated Monday Night Football in that demo four times last year.” White also said he thinks that even in this environment the UFC….. can land another big sponsor. “Especially now we can do it,” White said. “The price of an NFL sponsorship is so high and we hit the same market at a lower price.”
The UFC can sell itself as a value play, giving more bang for the buck. The UFC make a very attractive option, especially now when the ad/sponsorship market is in something of a free fall. The value play doesn’t come without some risk for the sponsors, as evidenced by the videoblog brouhaha that erupted recently.
It's GSP vs. ATT At UFC 100
No, it's not a handicap beatdown-to-be, but that's what the matchup of Georges St. Pierre vs. Thiago Alves will be at UFC 100 according to Alves' teammate, Lightweight standout Gesias Cavalcante. "JZ" is confident that the training Alves is getting at American Top Team will be the difference in their UFC Welterweight Title fight.
Fans Under 18 Banned From UFC 99
UFC 99 in Germany is now a "no kids allowed" zone. A front-page article in Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung-one of the country’s biggest newspapers-on Sunday has led to a ban on anyone under the age of 18 from attending UFC 99, according to Yahoo Sports. But early word is not a lot of fans will be affected by this.
Pros Picks: Hughes vs. Serra
On Saturday in scorching Las Vegas, the only thing hotter than the desert heat will be a ticket to UFC 98 “Evans vs. Machida” at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. The chief support bout to the main event between light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans and unbeaten challenger Lyoto Machida is the oft-delayed grudge match between Matt Hughes and Matt Serra. Both former UFC welterweight champions, Hughes and Serra desperately need a win to stay relevant at 170 pounds.
Sherdog.com spoke with dozens of professional fighters and trainers inside the world of mixed martial arts to see who they favored in the UFC’s best grudge match since Tito Ortiz first flipped the bird at Ken Shamrock.
Pros that picked Hughes: 8
Pros that picked Serra: 10
I'm surprised that Serra is ahead i guess Hughes is disliked by some in the mma community
Nortje: "Sokoudjou is Messing With the Real HWs now"
Sokoudjou stunned the MMA world by knocking out Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and Ricardo Arona but coming into this bout the fight favors you standing up and he has the advantage on the ground. Who are you training with at the moment to help you if the fight does hit the mat?
Nick Feketi was the silver medalist in the 2008 Olympics in heavyweight wrestling, he is helping me. Randy has some input as well and the gym is full of excellent wrestlers that also help so if we go to ground I should be good.
Time Warner Possibly Dropping MMA-friendly HDNet
Time Warner and HDNet have reached an impasse in coming to terms on a new carriage agreement and the result is the possible dropping of the high definition channel effective May 31st. The drop would affect the more than 1 million HDNet subscribers through TW nationwide. This would be a sizable chunk of the 15 million subscriber base for HDNet.
HDNet Co-founder Mark Cuban spoke with MMA Fanhouse and held out hope for a resolution:
“We are still in discussions,” Cuban said via e-mail. “The best thing fans can do is call their local Time Warner general manager and tell them that. They love HDNet and would be upset if its taken off.”
Gesias Cavalcante Interview
One of the best lightweight fighters of the world, Gesias “JZ” Cavalcante is ready for his return to the rings. Thirst for fight, the American Top Team representative is scheduled to fight Tatsuya Kawajiri in the Dream 9, on May 26, Japan. Without stopping the trainings, Gesias talked with TATAME.com and guaranteed: is ready to return with victory. Check below the exclusive interview with the fighter, who also commented about Shynia Aoki’s loss to Hayato Sakurai at Dream welterweight tournament, Vitor “Shaolin” Ribeiro’s return at Dream, the title fight between his team mate Thiago Alves and Georges St. Pierre and much more.
Cro Cop's fighting ASAP.... In the UFC
These days the boys from Cro Cop team are training in full force. After a long break and highly demanding recovery process, Mirko Cro Cop is ready to fight in MMA again.
All problems with injuries are history and Cro Cop is very optimistic to start another chapter in his career:
„I feel great, the recovery process is going well and we train at high intensity now. I never had such a strong desire to prove myself and I'll climb up again, or die trying.“
Mirko's next fight is set for June 13th in Germany, which means that he's back in the UFC, a place that he didn't have his best moments:
„I decided to fight in the UFC again, because of the stronger competition in the heavyweight division. My next opponent will be Mustapha Al-Turk. I didn't do well in my first three appearances - I wasn't myself. By returning to the cage I want to prove that I can still fight at highest level, no matter when or where.“, claims Cro Cop.
All I have to say is I didn't even hear about this. He signed with Dream not to long ago lol.
MMA regulation coming to Indiana
The state of Indiana appears to be headed toward full regulation for the sport of mixed martial arts. Senate Bill 160 was drafted primarily by Sen. Dennis Kruse of Auburn. It has been ratified, and regulation for MMA will take effect on the first day of July.
According to mmafacts.com, MMA is currently regulated in 32 states. A bill to add Hawaii to the list has passed that state’s legislature and is scheduled to go into effect later this year.
There are seven remaining states that do not regulate the sport.
They are: New York, Vermont, Massachusetts, South Carolina, Wisconsin, Rhode Island and Connecticut. However, in the case of Connecticut, the Mohegan Sun casino is on an Indian reservation and has run MMA shows.
There are also five states that have no athletic commission for MMA or boxing. Those are Alaska, Alabama, Wyoming, South Dakota and Maine.
Full regulation is a move those in the sport feel is necessary.
Lyoto Machida and the Revenge of Karate
Saturday, Lyoto Machida may well wind up finishing what Minoki Ichihara started.
Ichihara, if not the pioneering karateka to step into a mixed-rules ring, was certainly the first to do it for the benefit of a television satellite truck. An elite daido juku fighter in Japan -- a hybrid of judo and kyokushin karate -- Ichihara admitted himself in the 16-man draw of the second Ultimate Fighting Championship in March 1994.
Sean Sherk ready for Frankie Edgar in 3D
“I think he’s pretty well-rounded. He has a great wrestling background, [and] his striking looks good. Every time I’ve seen him fight, he looks comfortable on his feet. I think he’s a purple belt in jiu-jitsu. I think he’s pretty well-versed. I don’t know how this fight is going to turn out. It could turn into a wrestling match or a boxing match. That has yet to be seen. I think you’ll see a lot of everything in this one. That’s the way it is with everybody in this industry now, especially at the high level. Everyone is three-dimensional now. You never know how it’s going to go until you get in there and start mixing it up. I think my fight with Frankie is going to be real exciting. I think — assuming I do pull the win off in two fast-paced, exciting fights — that the fans would be excited for Penn and Sherk 2.”
Sengoku 9 FWGP Semifinals Announced, Omigawa Draws Sandro
The TATAME website has revealed the matchups for the Featherweight GP Semifinals at World Victory Road Sengoku 9 on August 2. Former UFC fighter Michihiro Omigawa, looking to continue an improbable upset run, draws unbeaten Featherweight King Of Pancrase Marlon Sandro in his semi, while the other semi features Top 5 Featherweight Hatsu Hioki vs. Masanori Kanehara. Sengoku 9 also features the finals of the "Gold Cup", the culmination of a new TV show similar to The Ultimate Fighter.
Jitters Gone, 'Professor X' Ready For UFC 98
He certainly didn’t look it, but Xavier Foupa-Pokam says the UFC jitters got him at UFC 97.
“I was feeling very great in the locker-room, and just before the corridor to the path to the Octagon,” Foupa-Pokam told MMAWeekly.com. “Then, I started to feel tense and didn't fight the way I should have. I wasn't lucid; I was short of breath.”
Serra Vs Hughes Moves From Reality To Real
“I’ll tell you this for sure, I’ve got one more fight left in me. Matt Serra needs to come up with a game plan now. My wife wants it. I want it. And I know these fans want it, too.”
Such were the words of Matt Hughes nearly one year ago after losing to Thiago Alves at UFC 85. New week, on May 23 at UFC 98, that fight will finally happen. In reality, it's been much longer than a year in developing.
Matyushenko decisions Lambert at Call To Arms
ONTARIO, Calif. –- Vladimir Matyushenko wrestled his way to a unanimous decision over Jason Lambert in the light heavyweight main event for Clean Kill’s Call To Arms at the Citizen’s Business Bank Arena. Matyushenko took the cards with scores of 30-27, 30-27, and 29-28.
In an active first round, the UFC veterans kept mostly to their shared bread-and-butter discipline, which led to some feverish pummeling scrambles for control. Both connected with strikes in their brief exchanges, but Matyushenko excelled with peppering shots in the clinch.
The determined Belarusian threw body shots and looping hooks in the second, before scooping Lambert up for the takedown. Lambert (23-10) did his best to pull off a guillotine attempt, but the pair was back on their feet in short fashion. Matyushenko (22-4) snuck in another takedown for good measure before the bell.
Lambert nailed a crucial takedown at the top of third round, and nearly took advantage with a flurry of shots that had referee Larry Landless hovering. However, Matyushenko mustered a reversal and a final takedown in the last two minutes to secure victory.