March 8, 2014
MMA Junkie reports the attendance, gate and bonuses for UFC Fight Night 37 which occurred Saturday afternoon in London, England. Alexander Gustafsson scored two bonuses as he defeated Jimi Manuwa in the main event.
Dana White announced attendance of 14,604 and a gate of $2,000,056 which occurred at London’s O2 Arena. It placed fourth out of the 5 UFC events held at the venue (the other 4 were PPVs) in attendance and gate.
The fight bonuses were awarded to Alexander Gustafsson, Jimi Manuwa and Gunnar Nelson. Each received $50,000 each. Gustaffson and Manuwa earned FOTN and Nelson and Gus received Performance Bonuses.
It was the first major event on Fight Pass so there was a portion of UFC fans that did not witness the fights. The event featured Alexander Gustafsson which was somewhat controversial as he is next in line for a shot at the Light Heavyweight title. I say controversial since if the UFC is to promote top fighters it should make the fighters marketable and have them fight to the biggest available audience. With a paywall (despite the opportunity to sign up for a free week trial), some UFC fans probably didn’t see UFC Fight Night 37. Thus, most fans will only recall his loss to Jon Jones as his last fight and not his impressive victory Saturday.
Of course, the UFC has its reasons for putting Gus on Fight Pass. He’s a quality fighter and with Fight Pass now available internationally, it would attract more fans to give Fight Pass a try.
March 1, 2014
As reported after the event from Macau, China, Dong Hyun Kim and Matt Mitrione won the Performance Bonus and Nam and Tokudome won Fight of the Night. Kim and Mitrone both had KOs of their respective opponents.
In addition, Executive VP and Managing Director of UFC Asia Mark Fischer announced an attendance of 6,000 which the UFC has classified as a sell-out. The attendance is down from its November 2012 visit to China at the Cotai Arena as UFC on Fuel TV 6 received attendance of 8,415 for a gate of $1.4 million.
Interesting that this is being deemed a sell-out although 2012’s event at the same venue had over 2,400 more in attendance. This may be due to seating configuration for this event although I do not see an explanation for this. Regardless, Fischer already announced another trip to Macau this year for August 23rd and a return to Japan on September 20th. Thus, it appears that the UFC is making headway into the Asian market. As for the bonuses, it’s good that the UFC changed its definition of the bonus system otherwise Matt Mitrione probably would not have received a bonus.
February 23, 2014
After UFC 170 concluded, UFC President Dana White held a post fight scrum where he briefly fielded questions from the MMA media, which included the gate discrepancy, performance bonuses, Cyborg, Cormier, Will Smith, and Rousey’s stardom.
Link: MMA Fight Corner
One odd observation from the post fight scrum is the media asking Dana White about the UFC 170 gate and attendance. Earlier in the week, Dana White stated that the gate for UFC 170 would be around $2M dollars. During the post fight press conference, the attendance and gate was announced as 10,217 for a live gate of $1,558,870. White stated “Are you f*cking sh*tting me? It’s $1.5M?” He did not know why there was a discrepancy but stated that it was a good question. Later in the video, he stated that this was still a good gate and said it was “a quarter of a million” more than her debut. As a note, UFC 157: Rousey vs Carmouche at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California officially drew 13,257 in attendance for a $1,350,191 live gate.
As for comparison, UFC 157: Aldo vs Edgar in the same Mandalay Bay venue in Las Vegas drew 10,275 for a gate of $2.34 million, though it is notable that the ticket prices for this event were scaled back, which may explain the lower gate. There is also an expectation of a high number of complimentary tickets, as MMAPayout expected yesterday.
February 22, 2014
The attendance at the Mandalay Bay was reported at 10,217 for a live gate of $1,558,870. In his media scrum on Thursday, Dana White indicated that the event would do a $2 million gate (around 19:15 mark). The numbers were announced at the post-fight press conference and official numbers will be released by the Nevada State Athletic Commission next week.
As for the bonuses, which were $50,000 each:
Fight of the Night: Rory MacDonald-Demian Maia
Performances of the Night: Ronda Rousey, Stephen Thompson
No complaints here although Erik Koch could have earned a PON bonus.
In addition, the Nevada State Athletic Commission released the salaries for the event which reveals Daniel Cormier and Ronda Rousey topped the roster which had a total payroll of $843,000.
Via MMA Junkie:
Champ Ronda Rousey: $110,000 (includes $55,000 win bonus)
def. Sara McMann: $16,000
Daniel Cormier: $160,000 (includes $80,000 win bonus)
def. Patrick Cummins: $8,000
Rory MacDonald: $100,000 (includes $50,000 win bonus)
def. Demian Maia: $64,000
Mike Pyle: $96,000 (includes $48,000 win bonus)
def. T.J. Waldburger: $18,000
Stephen Thompson: $28,000 (includes $14,000 win bonus)
def. Robert Whittaker: $15,000
Alexis Davis: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Jessica Eye: $8,000
Raphael Assuncao: $56,000 (includes $28,000 win bonus)
def. Pedro Munhoz: $8,000
Aljamain Sterling: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Cody Gibson: $8,000
Zach Makovsky: $24,000 (includes $12,000 win bonus)
def. Josh Sampo: $10,000
Erik Koch: $30,000 (includes $15,000 win bonus)
def. Rafaello Oliveira: $14,000
Ernest Chavez: $16,000 (includes $8,000 win bonus)
def. Yosdenis Cedeno: $8,000
As we reported earlier today, the demand for tickets for low thus despite the proclamation by White on Thursday that it would do $2.1 million was more hope than fact. The last time a UFC PPV held an event at the Mandalay Bay, it was for UFC 156: Aldo-Edgar, which received 10,275 for a gate of $2.34 million. So, while the attendance was about the same, it appears that Saturday utilized more comps than UFC 156. We will learn more when the official numbers are released by the NSAC. Rousey ends up tied with Daniel Cormier for highest reported earner of the night as she also received a $50K bonus in addition to her show/win purse. Patrick Cummins received $8K for filling in late.
MMA Payout will have more on UFC 170 in its Payout Perspective. Stay tuned.
February 22, 2014
MMA Payout has an update on tickets for UFC 170. While Ronda Rousey is an expected draw based on her last two UFC outings, the ticket demands for the event appear low.
Dana White said at his media scrum (19:14 mark) Thursday that the event would do a $2 million gate. However, there are still quite a few tickets in the lower and upper levels left as of early Saturday morning for the event according to Ticketmaster.
Ticket prices were set lower than previous Vegas PPVs, which were held at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Saturday’s event will be held in the smaller Mandalay Bay Events Center.
The last event at the Mandalay Bay was the TUF 17 Finale from April 2013. That event drew slightly under 6,000 fans for $569,075. The last PPV at the Mandalay Bay was UFC 156: Aldo-Edgar, which drew 10,275 for a gate of $2.437 million.
A week prior to this event 6,400 tickets had been sold.
According to Seat Geek, the average ticket price on the secondary market is $203. According to the ticket search engine company, only 10 fights in the last 40 going back to UFC 131 have drawn lower average ticket prices on the secondary market.
Seat Geek also had the following information:
- Comparing the prior secondary ticket marketplace for Rousey, the average ticket price for UFC 168 was $536. Of course, that fight was against hated rival Miesha Tate and the ticket resale market was also aided by Weidman-Silva II. For McMann, her last fight at UFC 159 against Sheila Gaff went for an average of $276. The headline for that event was Sonnen-Jones.
- Tickets in the upper-level start at $81 on the secondary market although some have been able to get them for as low as $50, which was the lowest face value for entry in this event. Lower-level tickets are available for $145 and up, and ringside seats are going for no less than $511 per ticket. At the high end, Seat Geek says there are some front-row ringside seats change hands for $1,700+ apiece.
More info on UFC seating from Seat Geek can be found here.
We will see what the final announced attendance and gate will be for UFC 170 but from what it appears, UFC 170 ticket sales have been sluggish despite White’s claim that the event will garner a $2 million gate. With the last minute injury in the co-main event, making Daniel Cormier fight a relative unknown, there are few other fights of note on this card.
February 17, 2014
The fighters grabbing the newly restructured bonuses received $50,000 each:
Fight of the Night: Lyoto Machida-Gegard Mousasi
Performances of the Night: Erick Silva and Charles Oliveira.
Junkie also reported the announced attendance at 7,511 which is slightly less than its last event held May 2013. UFC on FX8 featuring Vitor Belfort against Luke Rockhold received an attendance of 7,642.
Although the new structure of bonuses did not have to include a KO or submission it included the two fights on the card which did not go to decision. Silva was the lone stoppage via punches and Oliveira was the only submission of the night. There were mixed feelings on the FOTN as some did not believe it rose to being the best fight of the night. In all, it was a long night with a lot of fights that were not memorable.
February 2, 2014
UFC 169 drew 14,308 for a gate of $1.651 million. Attendance and gate were announced at the post-fight press conference
Jamie Varner and Abel Trujillo won the bonus for Fight of the Night and Trujillo won the KO of the Night. Varner and Trujillo were awarded $75,000 each and Trujillo received the standard $50,000 for his KO. There were no submissions of the night and the card had 10 of the 12 fights go to a decision.
Varner and Trujillo’s fight was the best of the night with Al Iaquinta and Kevin Lee as a runner-up. The night featured a record number of decisions on the card. Notably, it appeared that the UFC had bought an extra hour of PPV time last night as it ran 20 or so minutes past the third hour. The attendance and gate figures were below the last time the UFC made it to New Jersey as Jones-Sonnen in April 2013 at UFC 159 drew 15,227 for a gate of $2.7 million.
MMA Payout will have more on UFC 169 after the Super Bowl.
January 26, 2014
The event drew 10,895 for a live gate of $863,655 according to the announcement at the post-fight news conference. The attendance is the lowest in the past three Januarys.
Via MMA Junkie:
The UFC has visited Chicago’s United Center for three straight Januarys the weekend prior to the NFL’s Super Bowl, which also airs on FOX. UFC on FOX 2 in January 2012 drew an official attendance of 16,963 for a $1,270,960 gate. Only 1,091 (6.4 percent) of the tickets issued for that event were distributed as comps. UFC on FOX 6 in January 2013 drew an announced attendance of 16,091 for a live gate of $1.27 million, strikingly similar to UFC on FOX 2 the year prior.
In addition the bonuses were announced for last night event with the bonus winner receiving $50,000 each.
Fight of the Night: Sergio Pettis-Alex Caceres
KO of the Night: Donald Cerrone
Submission of the Night: Alex Caceres
Bruce Leeroy scored a double bonus for his last round sub of Pettis.
The attendance figures for Saturday was somewhat expected considering the lack of star power for this event. While Benson Henderson is a top lightweight in the division, Dana White, by his own admission considers Bendo a “grinder” which infers not an exciting fighter. The rest of the television card was good from the hardcore UFC fight fan perspective but not something a casual viewer would tune in and stay on Fox to watch.
January 20, 2014
Dana White admitted that Wednesday night shows are a tough draw however he believed that it would be a complimentary lead-in for TUF Nations on FS1 which debuted after the UFC event. According to MMA Junkie, UFC Fight Night represented average revenue of $39.84 per ticket issued.
Via MMA Junkie:
“These Wednesday night ones are tough,” White told MMAjunkie. “But we have ‘TUF Nations,’ which was launching (Wednesday). And it’s always better when you roll into one of those ‘TUF’ (debuts) with a live fight. You’re going to take your lumps on the gate sometimes, but it’s worth it in the big picture.”
This should be no surprise to anyone that the attendance on a weeknight for a B-level show is less than stellar. One can read between the lines and see that these events are mainly for television so it’s obviously willing to take the hit with attendance. But the complaint is the arena shots on TV of empty seats. To combat this, the UFC could either 1) offer cheaper tickets for weekday “Fight Night” shows, or 2) offer the tickets free. This is all about aesthetics for the event. So, if the UFC is only concerned about its television programming, it need not do anything. But, if it wants to create an atmosphere for these events, it should address the issue for future Wednesday events.
January 15, 2014
MMA Junkie reports the attendance, gate and bonuses from Wednesday’s UFC Fight Night 35 from the Gwinett Center in Duluth, Georgia. Headliner Luke Rockhold heads the list of bonus winners for the event.
Bonuses were the standard $50,000 per fighter and were as followers:
Fight of the Night: Yoel Romero-Derek Brunson
KO of the Night: Luke Rockhold
Submission of the Night: Cole Miller
The attendance at the event drew 5,822 for a live gate of $231,951. The arena has a seating capacity of 13,000 although we do not know the exact configuration for the UFC event.
The attendance figure is respectable for Duluth on a Wednesday night with a mid-level fighter show. At least one of those in attendance was “Nature Boy” Ric Flair. I have no real complaints on the bonuses here either. It was interesting to hear Cole Miller call out Donald Cerrone after his fight and offer to pay for Mike Dolce to help him cut weight.