If a great card happens and no one sees it does it make any noise?
Last night MMA fans who have access to Fuel TV or shady internet sties were treated to a fun UFC card. It had everything that you could want as a fan. It had a hot crowd, a bunch of finishes, an exciting main event, and some relevant fighters mixed in with some prospects. The lasting impresson of UFC on Fuel was show how badly the UFC has played the "Big Fox" cards.
Since we're all hardcores here we have all memorized some of Dana's "go to" statements. One of them being his reasoning for thinking MMA will eventually be the biggest sport on the planet. He uses a story about if Kobe Bryant and Michael Jordan(Dana isn't that big of a sports fan so he doesn't realize how terrible that game would be now) were playing a basketball game and a fight broke out in stands then everyone would turn around to watch the fight. Fighting is in our DNA blah blah blah. I agree with his line of thinking for the most part, but for the UFC on Fox cards it seemed like he forgot that mindset
First of all there were SIX fights on the 3 hour main card. Which means that last night we got fights on fights on fights. If you want to attract new fans this is what you do. We don't need 7 minutes of talking between every fight because the people who care are already watching and people who don't care(i.e. the new fans Dana wants) just want to see fighting. Half of the people watching the Superbowl every year don't even who the teams are, but they're watching just to watch people run into each other. The channels showing these games don't "go to the desk" every fifteen minutes to talk about what we just saw and explain what is going to happen in the second quarter, they just keep showing more of the game. As Dana said, it's pretty easy to figure out. The normal montage at the beginning of the fight and Joe Rogan explaining the more intricate stuff(ex. the whole ground game) is all that's needed. The time span was also great since three hours is the typical amount of time for sporting events.
A nice surprise was us getting new stats during all of the fights. The punches and kicks landed was pretty cool. It is about time they started doing stuff like this and I enjoyed the addition a lot. Now all they need to do is add in fight night weights and the production would be pretty much perfect. Oh and Kenny and Anik did a very good job last night. Some people complain about not being able to distinguish between the voices, but I'm not having that issue and I like Anik's play by play. The only flub was Kenny not noticing that Rocha was trying to pull guard when Brookings ended on top of him.
The problem with UFC on Fox is that in both cases they were trying to sell Pay Per Views, but UFC on Fox should be used for trying to sell the sport. All the people who love the UFC now love it for how things happen on the PPVs. We get 5 fights back to back and the reason the Fuel card was so good was because it was set up like a PPV card. Look at everywhere else they show fight cards for free(like Brazil). They just show the regular PPV and people love it just the way it is. This is a case where what is good for MMA is good for the UFC. After that card last night I am VERY interested in seeing Jake Ellenberger fight again(Ellenberger vs. Condit II better be on tap). Unfortunately the ratings of this wont even be 10% of what the ratings were for UFC on Fox, so will this make any noise? Sadly it probably wont.