The Sky Is Not Falling: UFC 107 Draws 620,000 Buys

51n40kx5rpl_medium_mediumPut another stake in the heart of the oversaturation argument.  As if it hadn't been disproved enough times, the argument has taken another hit, because the 8th MMA show in the period of 5 weeks drew a monster buyrate.  According to Dave Meltzer's Wrestling Observer Newsletter (subscription only), UFC 107 did 620,000 buys, blowing away all expectations. 

I've long argued that oversaturation isn't a problem as long as the UFC can deliver good shows.  There's no way to argue that "too many shows" caused the poor UFC 106 number while UFC 107 did such a big one just two weeks later.  Oversaturation is a problem in that it limits the UFC's ability to adapt when stars get injured because there are less replacements, and it may lead to weaker shows overall, but the concept that fans will skip a good looking UFC show just because they've seen a lot recently is simply wrong.

Besides the strong title match, one major difference-maker was Frank Mir, who has emerged as one of the top 5 UFC draws.  He was pure gold on the countdown show; Mir has become a better Tito Ortiz than Ortiz ever was.  Unlike Ortiz, he's still relevant in 2009, which helps explain why UFC 107 blew UFC 106 out of the water.

It's hard to believe that a short string of disappointing numbers for weak cards lead to a chorus that the sky was falling, but these numbers should help everyone relax and take a breath.  UFC 108 will do a horrible number; that should be obvious to anyone with a functioning brain considering the card.  The number won't be a sign of decline or some impending doom; rather, it will reflect the fact that the card is not worthy of PPV and should have been moved to Spike TV or cancelled altogether.

In February 2008, Brock Lesnar and Frank Mir did 600,000 buys, a huge number at the time.  Almost 2 years later, BJ Penn and Diego Sanchez topped it.  The sky is not falling.

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