White: UFC Expanding TV Reach, Schedule in 2011


  • Share on Tumblr
  • submit to reddit

Dana White file photo: Sherdog.com

As the Ultimate Fighting Championship and World Extreme Cagefighting prepare to merge in January, parent company Zuffa is making plans to expand the visibility of the world’s largest mixed martial arts promotion in the New Year.

Following Saturday’s UFC 123 in Auburn Hills, Mich., UFC president Dana White made mention of a pair of pending television agreements which he says would double the UFC’s current reach.

“We’re working on two deals right now, in the next few months, that I’m very confident we’ll get done. We’ll be in over a billion homes worldwide on television,” White offered during the post-fight news conference when asked if he felt the UFC’s popularity could rival that of World Wrestling Entertainment in its prime. “What does that mean for the sport in the next three years, let alone five or ten?”

“A lot of people don’t realize, right now, we’re in a half a billion homes worldwide. We’re in 175 different countries. We’re pretty big right now. I envision it being much bigger,” said White. “I think we’re gonna be bigger than everything.”

The countries and companies involved in the potential deals were not specified. However, in an October interview with television trade magazine Broadcasting & Cable, White hinted at the possibility of the UFC finally making its way to an American network such as NBC or Fox. He also reiterated plans for Zuffa to launch an all-UFC network “within the next couple years.”

Zuffa’s broadcast deal with current partner Spike TV is set to expire in 2011, though White said last month that UFC programming would remain on the male-oriented cable channel. The UFC will also continue to produce live shows for WEC’s home of Versus -- four are planned for 2011 -- which happens to be a property of the Comcast-owned NBC Universal.

The UFC should have plenty of product to offer its potential new partner, as White said that the company will increase its number of events in the coming year to accommodate the influx of WEC fighters and the introduction of two new weight classes.

“We’ll probably do around 30, 31 fights next year,” said White.

The number is just shy of the combined amount of shows put on by the UFC and WEC in 2010, with the UFC holding 24 -- including “numbered” events, UFC Fight Nights and a pair of Versus specials -- and WEC eight.

view original article >>

Related News

  • 18 days ago
  • 36 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White was a guest on "Cabbie Presents" and revealed that he would "absolutely" add martial arts legend Chuck Norris to the next version of EA Sports UFC video game. read news >>

  • 14 days ago
  • 32 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White gathered with a small group of reporters following the UFC Fight Night 46 weigh in event in Dublin (results here) to dish the dirt on the state of the mixed martial arts (MMA) union. Topics include Gina Carano vs. Ronda Rousey and why "Conviction" deserves that fight, why the promotion won't miss Nate Diaz if he continues to sit on the sidelines, how many fights Conor McGregor needs to win to earn a title shot, and much more. Check it out read news >>

  • 13 days ago
  • 43 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White gathered with a small group of reporters following the UFC Fight Night 46 post-fight press conference in Dublin (video replay here) to dish the dirt on the state of the mixed martial arts (MMA) union. Topics include Conor McGregor's big win over Diego Brandao (watch it again here), what plans UFC has for Europe moving forward, why Brad Pickett couldn't get it going against Ian McCall, and much more. Enjoy! read news >>

  • 7 days ago
  • 293 views

New Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) light heavyweight No. 1 contender Daniel Cormier (because of this) talks about his last sparring session with longtime training partner and UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez (1:20 mark), which threw him for a loop because Velasquez was trying to emulate Jon Jones -- complete with side kick to the knee. "DC" told him to pump the brakes on that (for now) because they're still nine weeks out from UFC 178, where Cormier will attempt to break "Bones" for read news >>

  • 28 days ago
  • 218 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is back again with its third "Embedded" video for UFC 175, featuring behind-the-scenes footage ahead of this weekend's (Sat., July 5, 2014) "Weidman vs. Machida" pay-per-view (PPV) event at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Watch the featured fighters, Chris Weidman, Lyoto Machida, Ronda Rousey and Alexis Davis hit up the open media workouts (more here), as well as put the finishing touches on their respective training camps. To watch the first read news >>

  • 28 days ago
  • 95 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is back again with its fourth "Embedded" video for UFC 175, featuring behind-the-scenes footage ahead of this weekend's (Sat., July 5, 2014) "Weidman vs. Machida" pay-per-view (PPV) event at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Watch the featured fighters, Chris Weidman, Lyoto Machida, Ronda Rousey and Alexis Davis as they tie a ribbon around their media duties and retreat to their quarters. Rousey takes a bath with her nutritionist Mike Dolce, Da read news >>

  • 28 days ago
  • 67 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) held weighs ins for UFC 175 earlier today (Fri., July 4, 2014), and saw all of the 22 fighters scheduled to compete on the card make weight, which means the 11-bout line-up that goes down tomorrow night in Las Vegas, Nevada, is now official. Conclusion of the weigh-ins means tomorrow night's fights, headlined by a middleweight championship showdown pitting Chris Weidman against Lyoto Machida, are one-step closer to becoming a reality. All that remains are the read news >>

  • 27 days ago
  • 160 views

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is back again with its fifth "Embedded" video for UFC 175, featuring behind-the-scenes footage ahead of this weekend's (Sat., July 5, 2014) "Weidman vs. Machida" pay-per-view (PPV) event at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. Watch the featured fighters, Chris Weidman, Lyoto Machida, Ronda Rousey and Alexis Davis as they slim down ahead of UFC 175's official weigh in (official results and video replay here). To watch the most recent UFC 175 "Embe read news >>

  • 27 days ago
  • 27 views

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) fan Q&A -- which usually precedes the promotion's weigh in events -- was instead moved to Saturday (July 5, 2014) to be one of the featured attractions at the UFC Fan Expo (more on that here). But for those mixed martial arts (MMA) fans not in "Sin City" for the UFC 175: "Weidman vs. Machida" pay-per-view (PPV) event (details), you can still watch Q&A hosts (and FOX Sports 1 broadcasters) Jon Anik and Kenny Florian, as they take the floor inside the Manda read news >>