UFC 156: Payout Perspective

February 4, 2013

Welcome to another edition of Payout Perspective.  This time we take a look at UFC 156 from the Mandalay Bay Events Center from Las Vegas, Nevada.

Aldo sends Edgar to third straight loss

Thud.  The leg kicks of Jose Aldo last night were reminiscent of those he delivered to Urijah Faber at WEC 48 which (IMO) was his coming out party.  To Frankie Edgar’s credit, he was able to deal with most of those with an effective counter.  Aldo’s cardio issues were evident in rounds 4 and 5. But, he had done enough to stop Edgar.

For Aldo, the first couple rounds showed his dominance that he had in the WEC.  He was quicker, had the counter and snuck in the devastating kicks to Edgar’s legs.  Will Dana White take the request of Anthony Pettis and give Showtime a shot to fight Jose Aldo.  What about Ricardo Lamas?  The guy who beat the guy (Erik Koch) that was supposed to fight Aldo for the title shot.  What about the Featherweight rankings?

For Edgar, its his third loss in a row.  The dip to Featherweight now looks like a waste unless he’s willing to take a couple fights before getting another shot at Aldo.  For Edgar’s benefit, a couple fights to get back some confidence would help.  Losing three straight decisions has to be hard on him.

Bigfoot Silva KOs Overeem

And that’s why haters are going to hate.  Alistair Overeem wore a shirt  to the weigh-ins saying, “Haters Going to Hate.”  The end result was a reason why people hate.  A classic case of underestimating your opponent.    Overeem had the first two rounds with ease although a couple shots at the end of the second round gave Bigfoot some momentum.  And then, Bigfoot laid hands on Overeem and that was all she wrote with Silva talking smack over a prone Overeem.

Overeem’s loss messes up the UFC’s hope for a Cain-Overeem fight.  For Silva, a Velasquez fight will not happen although JDS might be a good matchup to see which heavyweight gets back into the title picture.

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Attendance and gate

MMA Junkie reports that the attendance for UFC as released by the Nevada State Athletic Commission was 10,275 for a gate of $2.437 million.

Bonuses

The Bonuses drew some eyebrows as it was only $50K per bonus as opposed to $60-65K which had been the standard in 2012.

The bonuses were as follows:

Fight of the Night: Aldo-Edgar
KO of the Night: Bigfoot Silva
Submission of the Night:  Bobby Green

Interested that they did not give sub of the night to Dustin Kimura with a Rear Naked Choke for the sheer fun of announcing Kimura won with a Rear Naked Choke.

Promotion of the Fight

The UFC decided to promote Frankie Edgar’s move down to Featherweight as the main sell point for the PPV and touting Edgar-Aldo as a “Superfight.”  Certainly, the battle of a past and present champion has some juice but the UFC also had a Heavyweight battle between the returning Alistair Overeem and Bigfoot Silva.  It also had Rashad Evans, a proven PPV draw go up against a veteran in Little Nog.  We also know that Frankie Edgar is not a PPV draw.  And, at this point, neither is Aldo.

Notwithstanding what we know now, (that Overeem may be overrated and that while Evans brings a big event feel walking to the Octagon,he showed little in it on Saturday), it gave the lighter weight class the top bill.  Strategically, the UFC could be giving its lighter weight classes the opportunity to show what it could do. With Aldo out, the Featherweight title has not been defended since last January.  Marketing the PPV around Edgar-Aldo will be a test to see where the fan base is with respect the lighter weight classes.

Sponsorships

The octagon featured UltimatePoker.com, Xyience, MetroPCS, Harley Davidson, the movie Dead Man Down, MusclePharm, Tapout and Bud Light in the center.  Dodge also sponsored stats during the PPV as well.

Dead Man Down had the corners of the Octagon.  One had to wonder if there was hope that a fighter would be knocked out in one of those corners.  In fact, Overeem went down up against the Dead Man Down signage.  How appropriate.

Based on his wearing his headphones after the fight, Jose Aldo is sponsored by a headphone maker although I could not make out the brand.

Rashad Evans had top level sponsors as always.  Notable sponsors included Jaco, Corn Nuts and Bony Acai.  The last two are official UFC sponsors.

Little Nog signed a deal with Venum prior to UFC 156.  He also was sponsored by Bony Acai.

It appears that the UFC was sponsoring Frankie Edgar last night.  He had the UFC brand on his shorts and in a prominent spot on his fight banner.  He was also sponsored by FeartheFighter, Alienware, MicroTech, Wild Wing, Virtustream and Gaspari Nutrition.

Buy My Autographs.com was the most intriguing fight sponsor of the night.  The website, established in 2012, offers signed MMA memorabilia.

F3 Nutrition was a sponsor with big name fighters (Overeem and Rashad) wearing its logo that did not do so well with their outcomes.

Post-UFC 156 Headlines

Aldo versus ? – We will see if Aldo will take on Anthony Pettis for the Featherweight crown. Pettis just introduced himself to the nation on Fox last month and will have to wait for a lightweight shot after Bendo-Gil fight on Apri 20th.  What better way to stay busy than a title fight?  It would be an interesting scenario for the UFC to consider.

Cain’s next challenger – The UFC had hoped that Overeem would have beat Silva to get it to Cain versus Overeem in a big matchup that it could set for this summer.  Now, we will see what is in store for the Heavyweight Champion.

Odds and ends

It was a good night for Brazilian fighters.  A lot of Brazilian sponsors on many fighters tonight as well.

Fitch/Maia was a fight that went unnoticed by the media hype for this card but was intriguing from a tactical standpoint.  It was not a fight for people liking standup but for those grappling folks, it was outstanding control by Maia over Fitch.  Maia could be close to a welterweight title shot soon.

Evans and Little Nog had the best walk in music of the night but the worst fight of the night.  In the words of Joe Rogan, “That was not an entertaining fight.”  To complement that fight, at the end they showed Wilmer Valderrama and JWow.  It was as if the UFC wanted to make sure you knew that fight sucked.

Silva was very thoughtful in his post-fight interview when he said knocking out Overeem was the biggest in his career since it was the UFC.  Obviously, he was thinking his Fedor knockout as bigger but since it was in Strikeforce and he is now in the UFC, why insult your employer.

Would you check a kick from Jose Aldo?

Conclusion

As I alluded to earlier, this PPV will test to see whether the lighter weight classes can carry a PPV.  It will also test again whether Frankie Edgar can be a PPV attraction.  Last week’s Dodson-Johnson main event on Fox scored 5.2 million viewers.  Did the commercials featuring a closeup of Edgar’s face do enough to draw people to buy the PPV?  Aldo has been out for a while and is still relatively unknown.  But there may have been enough buzz for it to get to 500,000 PPV buys.

10 Responses to “UFC 156: Payout Perspective”

  1. Parker on February 4th, 2013 12:40 AM

    What would the UFC get out of sponsoring there own fighters? Like isn’t there enough logos inside the cage, around the arena and on the broadcast?

  2. BrainSmasher on February 4th, 2013 1:31 AM

    Anyone else notice the continued trend of giving Brazil fighters better fights? With Brazil being such a hot bed for MMA they are pushing more Brazilian fighters up into challengers for the belt when before they would get them knocked off because they didn’t sell in the US.

  3. Weezy02 on February 4th, 2013 3:11 AM

    My guess would be about 400,000 buys for this show (similar to the 2012 Super Bowl weekend show, less than the Silva vs. Belfort 2011 show but higher than the 2010 Super Bowl weekend show). I was really excited about Zuffa adding 145, 135 and, to a lesser extent, 125 pounders. I’ve enjoyed a lot of those fights (though I know a lot of fans don’t). I never did think, though, that we’d see PPV events headlined by them. Television events, yes, but now PPV events. I really hope that it did well. 350,000 buys was the record buyrate for fighters under the lightweight division coming in to Saturday. When they added the featherweights and bantamweights in 2011 I figured it would take at least three years to develop a number of fighters that fringe fans could really connect with/appreciate. I think that might play out. By this time next year I think those two weight classes, though they’ll never approach nearly the popularity of light heavyweight or heavyweight, might become a half-decent draw.

  4. joao on February 4th, 2013 8:03 AM

    which the brand name of headphone jose aldo ?

  5. BrainSmasher on February 4th, 2013 8:19 AM

    I would guess it does 280,000-320,000 buys.

  6. assassin on February 4th, 2013 12:23 PM

    I bought it, but it is doubtful I would buy another 125lb-145lb fight card (maybe 6 months after the fact for $9.99). I am just tired of not only the fight going the distance, but at not ever feeling that a stoppage “could” occur at some point during the fight.
    Better to have them on free TV.

    And god please, no immediate rematch for Frankie at 145.

  7. Diego on February 4th, 2013 1:38 PM

    There were times in the Aldo-Edgar fight that I wished one of them would stand his ground, dig in and go for the stoppage. I understand tactically why neither one did, but there was too much movement and not enough striking for my taste.

    Overeem looked like an absolute monster, straight clowning Bigfoot. Right up until he got KOd.

  8. codemaster on February 4th, 2013 10:09 PM

    This card showed why MMA is so appealing–there is always something unexpected.

    Everyone thought Overeem would crush BigFoot, or that Rashad would defeat Little Nog, and no one thought Fitch would be out-Fitched. Surprise, surprise.

    Aldo won the fight–but it was not like he dominated Frankie. P4P?

    This card also showed how the best laid plans can fall through in a minute. Rashad might have had a shot at Anderson Silva–but that is history. Overeem was supposed to use Bigfoot as a stepping stone to his title shot–but that won’t happen either. Overeem gassed bigtime–maybe he needs TRT?

    Who will Aldo fight now in the FW division? Let’s hope Pettis gets a chance.

    Where does Frankie Edgar go next?

    Maia may be a contender in the WW division if he can keep winning.

    Will Little Nog fight Jon Jones?

    Will Bigfoot fight Cain again? (bloodbath II)

    It was a great card with lots of meaning for the divisional rankings and future matchups..

  9. Brain Smasher on February 4th, 2013 11:25 PM

    I hope Pettis doesnt get a title shot at Aldo. He should be fighting for 155 title. It really bothers me when i see someone do what Pettis is doing. He never says a work about Aldo and when Frankie comes in and shows he is human and maybe has some cardio issues after the first round. Then Pettis cherry picks him a title fight. The fight might be fun to watch but it makes no sense. Pettis hasnt even fought for the 155 belt that he and everyone has been asking for. At this point he needs to win fights at 145 before he gets a shot. It would be different if Aldo was desperate for contenders and Pettis was at a dead end at 155. But this comes off as just cherry picking. Reminds me of Rampage Jackson. He didnt want to fight Glover. Then when he sees Glover get rocked by Maldonaldo. HE texts Dana asking for the fight to be rebooked.

    Who cares if Pettis can beat Aldo. Until he proves he is better than the other guys at 145 then he is just capitolizing on a style match up. Aldo didnt get his belt by picking 1 guy and beating him. He beat all the guys to get to the belt and keep it. Pettis needs to do the same like he is doing at 155.

  10. Caidel on February 5th, 2013 3:52 AM

    Brain Smasher: Well, according to todays reports – Pettis already got that titleshot. It should happen around August.

    I would be pretty pissed off, if I would be for example Ricardo Lamas.

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