Dana White at UFC 102

The next major television deal for the UFC – which could shape the direction of the sport over the next several years – is expected to be wrapped up in the next six months.

The UFC’s current deal with Spike TV is coming to an end, so the organization is currently in negotiations with the network as well as virtually every other possible partner to get the MMA giant the best deal possible.

“We’re in negotiations right now, so we’re still talking,” UFC president Dana White revealed on Saturday. “Should be wrapped up in the next six months.”

The UFC has been with Spike TV for several years, including the launch of “The Ultimate Fighter,” which debuted in 2005, and has been a flagship show for the network. White says that they are still working with Spike TV, and could absolutely end up back with them for another run, but they have to explore all options to get the best possible deal.

“We want to be with somebody we can grow with like we have with Spike. We’ve had a great relationship with Spike and done great things there, so hopefully we can figure things out,” stated White.

“Negotiations are negotiations, doesn’t matter who you’re talking to. I have a lot of respect and a lot of good relationships over at Spike TV, and we’ve been with them for a long time. They built us; we built them. We’ll see how the whole thing goes.”

The UFC has proven to be a commodity for every network they’ve worked with thus far, including Spike TV and the Versus network. While the UFC president admits that the promotion really doesn’t make any money off of their TV deals, it’s the exposure and growth of the brand that requires a deal get done.

One possible landing spot could still see the UFC on network television. White states that broadcast TV was always a potential landing site for the promotion, but the right deal just never came along.

“It’s always been part of the deal,” White said about network television. “Our deal has always been we could do fights on network television, we’ve just never come to a deal with network television. We’re not going to make dumb deals that don’t make sense.”

The UFC has in the past come close to sealing several major deals, but just didn’t pull the trigger when the final contracts didn’t seem right. At one point, the UFC was ready to begin a programming deal with HBO, but control issues sat at the heart of why they couldn’t finalize an agreement.

“We’re going to have to get in a situation where we create a deal with one of these networks where we have control of the product,” White said. “You imagine if I let somebody else take control? This is something they didn’t give a (expletive) about and didn’t believe in for the last 10 years and now they’re going to control it and say how it’s going to be run and how it’s going to be aired? Ain’t going to happen while I’m here.”

With the growth of the sport and the UFC’s rising popularity, any network could be a possible landing spot. NBC, however, could be a frontrunner due to the network giant already owning the Versus network, which currently airs UFC programming.

NBC Sports head Dick Ebersol recently resigned amidst a contract dispute with new owners from Comcast. It’s been widely reported that he was never a fan of mixed martial arts, so his resignation could be a positive in any UFC negotiations. Mark Lazarus now leads NBC Sports, but there’s no word on his opinion of MMA.

Whether it’s NBC, ABC, CBS, Spike TV or some other network, the UFC president says everybody is in the running. That’s what negotiation is all about.

“We’re talking to everybody.”


Damon Martin is the lead staff writer and radio host for MMAWeekly.com.
Follow
@DamonMartin on Twitter or e-mail Damon a question or comment.


Follow MMAWeekly.com on Twitter and Facebook.


view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

Headline Hunting: Are UFC-Reebok payout figures good enough? Morgan, Ferraro weigh in

  • 22 days ago
  • 1 views

For the past few months, fans, fighters and media have discussed the UFC’s Athlete Outfitting Policy compensation plan without even knowing the payout figures. So now that the amounts are in, is it a read news >>

Pic: UFC fighter leaks Reebok payouts, tenure tier for uniform sponsorship deal

  • 22 days ago
  • 10 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is less than two months away from instituting its landmark sponsorship deal with Reebok, one that would eliminate all other sponsors from the Octagon, by compensa read news >>

Inaugural strawweight title bout official for ONE Championship 27 in Singapore

  • 23 days ago
  • 1 views

Some changes and additions have hit this month’s ONE Championship 27 card in Singapore. Filed under: MMA Rumors, News read news >>

Peter Sobotta vs. Sergio Moraes re-booked for UFC Fight Night 69 in Berlin

  • 23 days ago
  • 0 views

Next month’s UFC return to Germany has another bout added to the lineup featuring one of the country’s own.Filed under: MMA Rumors, News, UFC read news >>

Mayweather vs. Pacquiao results: What next for Mayweather and Pacquiao?

  • 25 days ago
  • 21 views

Kyle McLachlan takes a look at which direction Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao might go in next, as well as the two big stars that fought on the undercard. So, it's over. Elated? Disappointed? I read news >>

'The other Jon Jones' has no intention of giving up his Twitter handle

  • 25 days ago
  • 59 views

Being the “other” Jon Jones is an adventure every few months for the man who controls the @jonjones handle on Twitter.Filed under: Featured Videos, News, Radio Highlight, UFC, Videos read news >>

Khabib Nurmagomedov to Have Surgery on Injured Knee, Out Four to Six Months

  • 27 days ago
  • 1 views

Second-ranked lightweight Khabib Nurmagomedov is going to require surgery on the injured knee that forced him out of his UFC 187 bout against Donald Cerrone. read news >>

Before alleged hit-and-run, Jon Jones threatened legal action against the NSAC

  • 27 days ago
  • 422 views

Two months before an alleged hit-and-run turned his world upside down, Jon Jones threatened to sue the Nevada State Athletic Commission for violating his privacy.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>

Report: Khabib out for five months with meniscus tear, says father

  • 28 days ago
  • 15 views

Khabib Nurmagomedov’s father, Abdulmanap, revealed that his son will be out on the sidelines for five months with a meniscus tear. On Wednesday evening, UFC 187 was dealt another hefty blow when it w read news >>