UFC on Versus 4 Payout Perspective

June 27, 2011

Welcome to a mini-version of Payout Perspective as we take a look at UFC on Versus 4 held at the Consol Energy Center. After Nate Marquardt was scratched from the main event, Cheick Kongo and Pat Barry gave one of the more entertaining fights of the year.

Marquardt terminated, reason not disclosed

The biggest storyline going into and coming out of the night was Nate Marquardt. Dana White was purposefully vague when addressing the issue on the pre-fight show on Versus. Marquardt won’t address the issue until Tuesday. This seems way too long to wait to comment on the reasons for his termination from the UFC. From a public relations and personal reputation standpoint, you’d want to get your story out there to the media as soon as possible. Instead, he is waiting three days. What is more interesting is that Marquardt will be giving an exclusive interview with MMAFighting.com.

Kongo KOs Barry

In a thrilling fight, Cheick Kongo came back from almost being knocked out and knocked out Pat Barry in the first round. Barry almost stopped Kongo after a shot floored him and Dan Miragliotta almost jumped in to call the fight. Fortunately for Kongo, he was able to rally and end Barry.

Story book ending for Brenneman

Fighting in front of his hometown fans, Charles Brenneman scored an upset over the up and coming Rick Story. Bad luck for Story who was riding a wave of momentum going into fight Nate Marquardt. After Marquardt’s withdrawal, Brenneman, who was to have fought in a prelim card filled in.

Unexpectedly, convenience store sponsor Sheetz, received good television time as Brenneman’s hand was raised wearing a Sheetz t-shirt at the end of the fight. The back of the shirt also had a nice tag line: “Spaniard Beat-Downs Made to Order”

Attendance and gate

MMA Junkie reports that the UFC’s Pittsburgh debut drew 7,792 fans for a gate of $562,000. The event ranked 3rd out of Versus events in terms of attendance. Even though there was a prediction of over 7,000, the empty seats were noticeable on television when the camera scanned the crowd.

In leading up to the UFC’s debut in Pittsburgh, the Pittsburgh Business Times (h/t robnashville) ran a story about how the event could bring in an estimated $3 million for local Pittsburgh businesses. The article mentions that hotels had been sold out in the area for the weekend. One thing to note is that it was the same weekend as the Boston Red Sox visiting the Pirates in inter-league play. It was also the weekend of Anthrocon, a “furry” convention. So, it would be hard to attribute all of the tourism revenue coming from the UFC as there were other attractions this past weekend.

Bonuses via MMA Fighting:

KO of the night: Cheick Kongo

Submission of the night: Joe Lauzon’s kimura

Fight of the night: Charles Oliveira vs. Nik Lentz

Each fighter received $50K each.

Odds and ends

Is anyone else noticing that some of the refs are trying to put themselves over with catchphrases or signals to the camera? Perhaps they should just pay attention to the fights.

What’s next for Rick Story? All of his work in getting to be a contender were washed away after his loss. How much does he fall down? And, how much can you attribute to having to fight a guy he did not prepare for?

Despite the Nate Marquardt controversy, the card was entertaining and better than what it looked like on paper. No one could have expected such a wild fight between Kongo and Barry. Also, the Story-Brenneman fight gave viewers an upset.

6 Responses to “UFC on Versus 4 Payout Perspective”

  1. Matt C. on June 28th, 2011 1:42 AM

    I agree with your point about the refs trying to get some spotlight or whatever they are doing with the catchphrases and signals to the camera. That comment made me think about something though.

    My first thought was MMA should be like any other sport for refs. If the ref is drawing attention to themselves then it’s probably because they are doing something wrong. However in MMA the refs are quite often getting noticed for making the right call. Like Big Dan Miragliotta not stopping the Main Event of this event too early and robbing the fans of Kongo’s comeback KO. So yea please refs quit with the signals to the camera and just worry about doing your job and there will be plenty of chances to get noticed by making good calls in MMA.

  2. Michael on June 28th, 2011 4:25 AM

    @ Matt and Jason:
    I don’t disagree with you guys. – The most embarrasing move is always done by Kevin Mulhall, Cecil Peoples has a funny Special-Move, too, when he’s refereeing…

    That said, nothing can take away from the very early UFCs where it was just “Big” John McCarthy shouting “LETS GET IT ON!”. That will always be cool! Plus the nickname “Big” John.

  3. Nate Marquardt Needs Better PR Advice on June 28th, 2011 9:52 AM

    […] MMA Payout is critical of Marquardt’s PR approach: […]

  4. Jason Cruz on June 28th, 2011 9:08 PM

    I believe there’s a saying that a ref has done his job when no one notices him/her. In my opinion, that’s what refs should be. I think “Big” John has earned his nickname and his tag line. I think my problem with some of the refs is that there’s too much schtick. If they do something simple without drawing too much attention, I wouldn’t mind. Even McCarthy’s nickname and tag line are simple and to the point without drawing too much attention.

  5. Machiel Van on June 29th, 2011 7:41 AM

    It’s all about Mike Beltran…

  6. BrainSmasher on June 30th, 2011 9:10 PM

    This started to be a big problem with refs when the UFC got big. Me and my friends used to laught when we first heard someone try to come up with soemthing cool like BJM has. To be honest BJM line was as much a part of the UFC as the cage. I think he has to trademarked and the UFC cant use it. So refs each have their own way. Some try something new and try to hard and come off foolish. But this isnt the first time. Been going on for half a decade now.

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