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Russell Peters on UFC’s oversaturation: ‘It really is hard to follow the sport’

Canadian comedian Russell Peters discusses various concerns regarding the modern UFC product.

Russell Peters may be one of the most popular comedians in the world, but he is also well versed in the various talking points of combat sports.

The beloved comedian, who joined The MMA Hour in studio on Monday afternoon, immediately delved into his concerns regarding the UFC's current product, mainly the issue of over saturation and his inability to keep up with the sport.

"It really is hard to follow the sport and I'm a fan," Peters said. "I think the problem is that UFC made it about their name as opposed to the fighters. I think that worked in the beginning, the rebranding. And that really saved and created a genre."

Peters is not a new fan of the sport. Apart from competing in amateur boxing and training Jiu-Jitsu under Carlos Newton, the Canadian became a big PRIDE fan over a decade ago and was disappointed when the promotion was bought out by the UFC. He admits that the alarming trend of buyouts that extended to Strikeforce were not a decision he was particularly pleased about.

"They shouldn't have bought PRIDE and Strikeforce and just eliminated them," said Peters. "They should have kept them and then instead of UFC Fight Night, they could have had PRIDE night or Strikeforce. It gives you some sort of scope and then puts UFC at a higher level. 'These are our lesser ones, here's the big one.' But if you call everything UFC ... somebody was like did you catch the fights last night? I was like, 'What f---ing fights? I didn't know there was fights.'"

The 44-year-old moved onto the concern that the UFC has monopolized the MMA industry and adopted a stranglehold over the flow of talent and quality fights in the market.

"When UFC starts buying stuff and then getting rid of it, I'm like, well that's just monopolizing a sport that doesn't need to be monopolized," he said. "There's enough for it to go around. You don't need to be the only guy in town. ... You do want to be the only one standing. But if you own them all, does it really matter? You're still the only man standing. It's more for perception, really.

"Perception is everything."

Transcription taken from