Road Fighting Championship, which is based in South Korea and hosts events in the Asian region, announced last Saturday that they will be hosting a lightweight tournament with a $1,000,000 prize. They’re asking for the best fighters in the world to join, and even prodded at Jose Aldo, who currently wants out of his UFC contract.
ROAD FC $1 million 70kg Tournament! We want Jose Aldo, we want the best fighters to contact us: RoadFC@RoadFC.com pic.twitter.com/VRgYamnPqv— ROAD FC (로드FC) (@ROADFC) October 1, 2016
While it’s highly unlikely that the UFC lets go of their long time featherweight champion, the massive prize money involved alone is already drawing a lot of interest from talented fighters.
Inquiries have been flowing since the announcement. Sources tell us fighters from Korea, China, Japan, Brazil and the US have already signed on, pretty much guaranteeing the tournament will include a mix of Asian stars, popular names and UFC vets.
Apart from the price tag, not much was known about the lightweight tournament, and BloodyElbow.com has since obtained more information about it.
According to a promotion official, the tournament will start on Spring of 2017. It will be a 32-man lightweight tournament, meaning it will take 5 rounds to crown the winner. Those 5 rounds will be spread across the year, and Road FC will return to Korea, China and Japan for those events.
The tournament champ will take home the entire $1,000,000 prize, but purses for the earlier bouts will be negotiated individually.
To date, Road FC has hosted 33 major events, with 6 of them happening in 2016, and 2 more scheduled before the year ends.
Apart from having a good blend of the top Asian fighters mixed with well known veterans, UFC alums, and a couple of freakshow type bouts, Road FC also has the best international presence in that highly coveted market in China.
They have an impressive deal with media giant CCTV that broadcasts their events on free TV in China. Their last event in the country drew 40 million viewers on sports channel, CCTV 5.
Road FC has had a pretty good 2016 so far, but it looks like they’re planning on going even bigger with this 2017 tournament. With that prize money being dangled, it will surely be interesting to see how the 32-man roster eventually fills up.