LAS VEGAS – In the 115-degree heat of Las Vegas, the snow cone truck parked on Fremont Street probably looked like a mirage.
But for 100 at-risk kids from Boys Town Nevada, it was more of an oasis, as the UFC teamed up with online shoe retailer Zappos to hold a community event as part of the fight promotion’s “Fight Week.”
The icy treats were a big hit, of course, but every kid also got a new pair of shoes. Among others, Zappos has teamed up with the West Coast Basketball Conference to give shoes to needy kids.
The UFC also gave out free merchandise at the event.
“It’s a great message about the community giving back, Boys Town Nevada rep Howard Olshansky told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com).
Founded in 1917, Boys Town is a not-for-profit organization that cares for children with emotional and physical problems and advocates for change in the current child care system.
UFC fighters Phil Davis, Luke Rockhold, Forrest Griffin, Benson Henderson, Carlos Condit, Urijah Faber, Joseph Benavidez and Daniel Cormier attended the event and put kids through a mini-workout. Afterward, they answered questions, took pictures and signed autographs.
UFC co-COO Lawrence Epstein said the promotion has worked with Boys Town almost since parent company Zuffa took control of the company in 2001. He declined to put a number on the money contributed to the charitable organization, but said Zuffa has donated 10s of millions of dollars to good causes over the years.
“It’s important to write checks, but it’s also great to give kids an experience that they’re going to remember forever,” he said. “I was really proud of our guys. There’s so much controversy right now about the moral fabric of athletes, and our guys are awesome. Everybody makes mistakes, but we’re proud of our fighters, and frankly, they’re our best representatives.”
On why contributing to organizations like Boys Town is an important part of Zuffa’s business, Epstein, said, “This is what real institutions do. They give back.”
International Fight Week currently is underway with a UFC Fan Expo at the Mandalay Bay Convention Center. It culminates with Saturday’s UFC 162, which takes place at MGM Grand Garden Arena and features a middleweight title tilt between champ Anderson Silva and Chris Weidman.
(Pictured: Lawrence Epstein)view original article >>
The lineup for the UFC’s return to New Zealand in June continues to grow with the addition of another welterweight bout.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>
The Ultimate Fighter 25 Finale appears to have a women’s bantamweight bout headed for the card, including an unbeaten Invicta FC prospect.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>
Matt Hamill is still competing in professional MMA, and on Friday, “The Hammer” picked up his first win in nearly five years. Filed under: News, Videos read news >>
Vitor Belfort is expected to face Nate Marquardt at UFC 212 in what may be the final fight of his career. read news >>
Stream or download Friday’s edition of MMAjunkie Radio with Joseph Benavidez and Megan Olivi.Filed under: News, Radio, UFC read news >>
Ronda Rousey’s judo coach, Justin Flores, keeps it real in providing insight into her mindset and why it’s unlikely she’ll return to fighting.Filed under: Featured, News, UFC read news >>
Todd Duffee hasn’t been seen in a UFC fight since a first-round knockout loss to Frank Mir in the UFC Fight Night 71 headliner nearly two years ago. He hopes for that to change in the coming months, read news >>
When UFC was sold in July 2016 to WME-IMG for a staggering $4.2 billion, longtime president Dana White inked a five-year deal to remain with the fight company. read news >>
Body image has always been an issue for UFC strawweight Tecia Torres, and she was candid about it today in an inspiring Instagram post.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>
Following a disappointing loss to Kamaru Usman, UFC welterweight Sean Strickland is hoping to book an appearance in front of his hometown crowd – and that he doesn’t have to sneak his way past securi read news >>