The success of the UFC 134/Rio is still producing aftershocks in the brazilian media. As Henrique posted earlier this week, Rede TV, the network that has acquired the rights to broadcast UFC shows in Brazil, reached their biggest ratings ever last saturday night.
And as I commented in a Tim Burkle post last week (somewhere here), I thought that it was curious that Rede Globo was having MMA demos in a Martha Stewart-esq morning show.
So today Ricardo Feltrin, writer for Folha de São Paulo (probably the biggest newspaper in Brazil), wrote a piece about bigger brazilian networks interested in broadcasting UFC shows in 2012.
Rede TV should be careful because everybody is looking at their “golden bird”, the UFC. The level of repercussion and the high ratings of last saturday broadcasting, straight from Rio, caught attention of all of Rede TV rivals.
Specially of Band TV, that tried to spoil Rede TV´s broadcasting weeks prior to the event, and Globo, that had the chance of acquiring the broadcasting rights but refused to do so.
According to what Ooops! found out, Band executives tried to take the event out of Rede TV´s hands, almost at the last minute, with a aggressive proposal. In other words, Zuffa would make a lot more money and Band would deal with any breach of contract penalties. The fact that Rede TV has been a UFC partner in the last three years weighed in their favor.
Other moves came from Globo. That´s because not even the most presumptuous and pacifist Globo director could ignore the 10 average and 13 peak points obtained by the country´s 5th network with the broadcasting of the fights, and on a saturday night. It was a ratings phenom and it caught Globo´s attention.
The only problem is that Globo had the chance of signing a deal with the UFC. The promotion executives were ignored by the network as Eduardo Ohata, of Folha, informed.
There´s other obstacle for Zuffa: that Globo buy the rights but doesn´t broadcast the events, a regular strategy employed by the network.
And this last statement is very true. Globo regularly purchases other networks shows, broadcasting rights and formulas only to bury them god knows where, just to make sure their regular – and extremely boring – programing has no rivalry.
I just hope that these latest developments doesn´t translate in some cheap plan to Globo eliminate one of their rivals at the expense of MMA fans.