June 19, 2016
UFC Fight Night 89 from Ottawa, Canada drew 10,490 for a gate of $1,278,250. The attendance, gate and bonuses were announced at the post-event press conference.
According to this, TD Place has a standing room capacity of over 10,500. Thus, the numbers reflect a full house on Saturday night for the UFC’s debut in Ottawa.
The bonuses went to Donald Cerrone, Krzysztof Jotko, Steve Bosse and Sean O’Connell. Each earned $50,000. Cerrone and Jotko earned performance bonuses for their respective stoppages. Bosse and O’Connell put on a slugfest to earn fight of the night honors.
A good night of fights and based on the attendance announced it was a well-attended event. The choice in venue (i.e., lower-capacity venue) probably makes this event look much more impressive.
June 5, 2016
Welcome to another edition of Payout Perspective. This time we take a look at UFC 199 taking place at The Forum in Inglewood, California. The show featured two title defenses.
Bisping shocks the world
Michael Bisping waited a long time for his shot at the middleweight title and he did not disappoint. Perhaps exposing a suspect chin, Bisping KO’d the champion Luke Rockhold in the first round. Rockhold appeared to be overconfident in the lead up to this fight and admitted as much post-fight. Bisping is a polarizing figure but you have to respect his journey to the title. We could see a rematch of the two or maybe Jacare Souza, who congratulated The Count on the way out of the Octagon would be a good choice.
Dominator overwhelms Faber
It was a very entertaining promotion for the fight, but in the end, Dominick Cruz showed that he was much better than Urijah Faber. The oft-injured bantamweight champion secured a unanimous decision. Joe Rogan seemed to focus on whether or not Faber would retire after this fight.
Would people be willing to pay $60 for a “superfight” with Demetrious Johnson?
Bonuses went out to Bisping and Dan Henderson (coincidentally opponents at UFC 100) for their performances. Polo Reyes and Dong Hyun Kim earned Fight of the Night. All received $50,000.
Attendance and Gate
The UFC announced post-fight that The Forum was a sellout with 15,587 for a live gate of $2,168,675.
The sponsors in the Octagon included Harley Davidson, Toyo Tires, Bud Light, MetroPCS, and the TNT upcoming drama, Animal Kingdom. Food 4 Less, a Compton, California-based “no frills” grocery was a sponsor in the Octagon as it shared a post with Monster. As with most UFC events, Monster Energy had the center of the Octagon.
Dominick Cruz sported a Monster patch on his Reebok black kit. He also did an old school thank you to them post-match including holding a Monster can.
UFC Embedded appears to be the place to have your non-official UFC sponsors to be visible. Luke Rockhold wore Adidas and Monster Milk during the vlogs.
Odds and Ends
Three big pieces of news not related to 199. First, Brock Lesnar is back. Despite how he left the company, he returns and the move should draw eyebrows as the WWE is allowing Lesnar to fight a month before the company’s second-biggest show of the year – Summerslam.
Second, Fedor Emelienenko will be on Fight Pass on an EFN card on June 17th. Thus, the UFC will finally get Brock Lesnar-Fedor…just not together.
Finally, the rematch no one except Conor McGregor wants as Nate Diaz will face McGregor at UFC 202 in Vegas August 20th. Interesting that the UFC is traveling less domestically.
There were 4 fights on UFC Fight Pass Prelims. 3 of the 4 fights were very good.
UFC Fight Pass introduced a promotion where fans can send in 1 minute videos to tell Dana White why they are the biggest UFC fan. The winner will get to come to International Fight Week, meet Dana White and attend UFC Fight Night: Alvarez-RDA.
UFC allowed flags in lieu of sponsor banners in the Octagon.
Octagon ladies sport the Monster patch on their uniforms, do they get paid for doing so?
Watching Embedded, apparently the champions (Cruz and Rockhold) were given rental properties to stay in during fight week while the others stayed in a hotel.
The weigh-ins were different since newly instituted weigh-in rules with the California State Athletic Commission allowed fighters to weigh-in between a 10am-2pm window the day before the fight. Thus, the televised weigh-ins we usually see did not include the official weigh-ins.
Did the finish of Hendo/Lombard look similar to Hendo/Bisping at UFC 100 with Hendo unloading on an already unconscious opponent?
Ariel Helwani and three others were escorted from the building during UFC 199. Helwani tweeted that he had been banned by the UFC for life. It was Helwani that broke the Brock Lesnar news on MMA Fighting.
The show concluded with a tribute to Muhammad Ali who passed away on Friday.
This was a very good show but it will likely be overshadowed by the news that Brock Lesnar is returning next month. Google trends had 500,000 searches for UFC 199 on Saturday. Notably, Brock Lesnar drew 100,000 searches on Saturday. How many PPV buys will this card receive? Without a proven PPV draw at the top of the card, yet a solid lineup for the PPV, the buy rate should be 350,000 to 400,000 PPV buys.
June 5, 2016
UFC 199 held at The Forum in Inglewood, California drew 15,587 for a live gate of $2,168,675 according to the announcement at the post-fight press conference. In addition, Michael Bisping led the bonus winners for the night.
In addition to Bisping’s KO of Luke Rockhold to earn the middleweight title, Dan Henderson received a fight bonus for his KO of Hector Lombard. The show’s first fight of the night, Polo Reyes-Dong Hyun Kim drew honors for FOTN.
The Forum’s capacity is 17,500 although with seating configuration the 15,587 announced may be a sellout.
Notably, the last time the company was in Los Angeles, UFC 184: Rousey-Zingano drew 16,577 for $2,675,560 at the Staples Center.
No real arguments on bonus winners although Dustin Poirier and Max Holloway put on dominant performances. Despite Chris Weidman dropping out, the fights were entertaining and fight fans came out to watch.
May 29, 2016
UFC Fight Night 88 drew 5,193 for a live gate of $359,000 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. Headliner Cody Garbrandt led the list of bonus winners.
The attendance, gate and bonuses were announced at the post-fight press conference.
Cody Garbrandt, Jake Collier, Jeremy Stephens and Renan Barao earned the $50,000 fight night bonuses. Garbrandt and Collier won for their Performances of the Night. Stephens and Barao drew Fight of the Night.
The attendance and gate was one of the lowest for a Vegas UFC show.
The annual Memorial Day show was held on a Sunday night instead of the usual Saturday PPV. On would have to go back to UFC Fight Night 47 for a live gate and attendance this low for a Fight Night. I left out UFC Fight Night 80 (PVZ-Rose 1,643 in attendance and $234,725 gate) since the venue was so small. Obviously, this event comes at a time in between big events and with no top names the low attendance and gate may have been expected.
May 16, 2016
Welcome to another edition of Payout Perspective. This time we take a look at UFC 198 taking place from Curitiba, Brazil where Fabricio Werdum took on Stipe Miocic for the Heavyweight title.
Miocic crowned Heavyweight Champ
Despite the massive crowd in favor of Fabricio Werdum, Stipe Miocic knocked him out in the first round. The KO stunned the massive crowd in Curtiba. For Miocic, it was an emotional win and he showed it when he returned back home to Cleveland. He also had a message for the city’s NBA team.
— UFC (@ufc) May 15, 2016
— Cleveland Cavaliers (@cavs) May 15, 2016
Cyborg does not disappoint in debut
The long-awaited debut of Cris “Cyborg” Justino did not disappoint the Brazilian fans as she overpowered Leslie Smith earning a TKO in the first round, just 1:21 in, despite a vehement protest from Smith. Smith took to social media after the fight to vent her anger.
The obvious question was whether Cyborg could make weight, which she did. Now, the next hurdle would be coming down another 5 pounds to challenge Miesha Tate for the bantamweight title. Of course, maybe there’s a fight out there at the 140 pound catchweight that could happen (i.e., Ronda Rousey).
It was a record crowd at Arena da Baixada in Curitiba Parana, Brazil as the announced attendance was over 45,000 (45,207 to be exact). It made it the 3rd highest attendance in UFC history according to the announcement on the PPV telecast. The tickets sold out in one day. No gate was announced which seems to be the norm for Brazil shows.
The bonuses of $50,000 went to Miocic, Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza, Francisco Trinaldo and Yancy Medeiros. Trinaldo and Medeiros won for Fight of the Night which aired on the UFC Prelims on FS1 and Miocic and Souza earned performance bonuses.
Budweiser was in the center of the Octagon. Notably Nissan had signage in the octagon. Bud Light was also present in the Octagon along with Toyo Tires, EA UFC 2, Harley Davidson, MetroPCS, Fight Pass, and ads for UFC 199 and 200.
Budweiser sponsored the Embedded episodes and also had the fighter prep point. Bud Light was a big sponsor throughout the broadcast.
No Monster Energy Drink on the broadcast. This may be due in part that TNT Energy Drink had been a UFC sponsor in Brazil. According to this UFC press release, the Monster exclusive deal with the UFC, excludes Brazil.
Odds and Ends
This was a big show but think how much bigger it could have been with Anderson Silva-Uriah Hall.
Fans were given Werdum “faces” which had the former champ’s trademark smirk. He did it a couple times during the walk out. Werdum seemed like he had the time of his life until the fight started.
A subtle post-fight gesture for new champs is that they are given the champion’s “black” Reebok shirt. Miesha Tate was given it after defeating Holly Holm. Miocic was handed the shirt after his post-fight interview.
Matt Brown probably should never fight in Brazil again. He gave the Brazilian fans the Stone Cold Steve Austin treatment at weigh-ins. Although FS1 did not show it, there was footage of random fans taking shots at Brown on his walkout to the Octagon against Damian Maia.
Here’s the full Matt Brown walkout where you can clearly see him get hit by fans on 3 occasions. pic.twitter.com/GmvayRP4xk
— Chamatkar Sandhu (@SandhuMMA) May 15, 2016
Brown was submitted by Maia. The next day, his ex-coach takes a swing at him. Fortunately, authorities got a hold (literally) on the guy.
I know that there are practical reasons for this, but does anyone find it odd that Benson Henderson was once again wearing a UFC uniform in the corner of training partner, Bryan Barberena.
It looks like Jon Jones is really feeling it.
Man USADA really did a number on some of these guys
— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) May 15, 2016
Big Nog was announced as the first UFC fighter to go into the company’s Hall of Fame this summer. Little Nog had a KO of Patrick Cummins as the featured fight on the early UFC Prelims on Fight Pass.
There were 500,000 google searches for UFC 198 on Saturday.
UFC 198 was a very entertaining card with some good finishes. But, did the Werdum-Miocic appeal to the casual viewers? Probably not. This was a card which was focused on Brazil. The attendance looked very good and the crowds (including at the weigh-ins) were great. However, the PPV buys for this event will likely come in around 325,000 buys.
May 8, 2016
The numbers were announced at the post-fight press conference.
Alistair Overeem, Stefan Struve, Germaine de Randamie and Gunnar Nelson earned Performance of the Night Bonuses of $50,000 each. There was no Fight of the Night bonus.
Notably, the bonuses went to the four winners of the last four bouts of the event.
In addition, attendance and gate were announced with 10,421 fans coming to the Ahoy Rotterdam to watch the UFC for the first time. The live gate was announced at $1,523,320.
The venue houses up to 15,818 at its capacity.
2016 attendance and gates from international Fight Nights:
UFC Fight Night 86, Zagreb, Croatia: 13,177, $549,000
UFC Fight Night 85, Brisbane, Australia: 9,552, $1M
UFC Fight Night 84, London, England, 16,734 $2M
It was a good debut for the UFC in the Netherlands. The attendance and gate are on par with what we’ve seen this year. The UFC’s expansion of its footprint into other countries seems to be working. Utilizing fighters in this region with the help of hometown favorites like Overeem in the Netherlands also buoys the strategy.
April 29, 2016
Welcome to another edition of Payout Perspective. Better later than never, we write about UFC 197 taking place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena with the return of Jon Jones.
Jones takes care of OSP
Jon Jones returned to the UFC octagon to handily defeat Ovince St. Preux via unanimous decision. OSP was a late replacement for Daniel Cormier and did his best, but it was clear that he was in there against a far superior opponent. OSP’s cardio was not ready for a 5 round fight and he wasn’t able to do much against Jones. It seems unfair to criticize OSP since he stepped up on late notice. But, he was given a chance and was unable to capitalize.
For Jones, it was a good fight to get back into fighting. It was his first fight since January 2015. Next is a showdown with Daniel Cormier as the main event for UFC 200.
Mighty Mouse is still good
Say what you will about Demetrious Johnson, there were two fighters on the card that you may argue are the best for pound in the world. Only one looked like it. Johnson dispatched of former Olympian Henry Cejudo in round one of the defense of his Flyweight title.
There is no one left in the Flyweight division for Johnson. Perhaps a rematch against Dominick Cruz would be the most compelling fight to help Johnson draw an audience he deserves.
Attendance and Gate
The event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena drew 11,352 fans for a gate of $2.3 million as announced at the post-fight press conference.
Also announced the presser, the $50,000 bonuses went to Demetrious Johnson, Yair Rodriguez, Danny Roberts and Dominique Steele.
UFC 197 Weigh-Ins on FS1: 184,000
UFC Pre-Fight Show on FS1: 218,000 viewers
UFC 197 Prelims on FS1: 835,000 viewers
UFC Post-Fight Show on FS1: 279,000 viewers
UFC 197 Payouts
Jon Jones led the roster making $500,000 (with no win bonus) followed by Demetrioius Johnson ($195,000).
The rest of the payouts are here. The payouts do not include the Reebok sponsor pay.
Promotion of the Fight
Jon Jones almost did not make this fight as he was cited once again for a traffic infraction. This time, it caused him to violate parole and spend a couple days in prison. Ironically, Daniel Cormier pulled out of the fight soon after Jones’ legal troubles. Instead of a Jones-Anthony Johnson showdown, the pick was Ovince St. Preux.
Henry Cejudo made pro-UFC comments about Conor McGregor. He then clarified the comments which seemed a little more confusing. The fact that he was the guy that said he would not fight in Nevada so long as Nick Diaz was suspended makes his comments this week uneven. Granted, he’s entitled to his opinion and just because he’s supported Diaz does not mean he has to support Conor.
The Embedded episodes focused on the return of Jon Jones, OSP, Mighty Mouse and Cejudo. It also included the Pettis brothers training at the same time as Jones in preparation for the fight.
Reebok, Harley Davidson, EA UFC 2, Toyo Tires, MetroPCS, Monster Energy Drink, Bud Light, mobile app game Mobile Strike were in octagon sponsors with Monster taking the center.
Jon Jones had a Monster sponsorship patch in addition to his Reebok gear. He also held a Monster can after the fight in an old school way of promoting the drink.
Some notables: Jon Jones wore his sponsor, nutrition products company, GAT during an open UFC workout and it was captured on Embedded.
Luke Rockhold was seen in the crowd at UFC 197 sporting an Adidas hat. Prior to the Reebok deal, Rockhold had a deal with Adidas. Of course, since the two companies are linked, there was likely no problem with Rockhold wearing the hat.
Odds and Ends
Was it odd or great promotion that Daniel Cormier served as the color commentator for the Jones-OSP fight?
Was it me, or did it seem like OSP did not believe he was going to win this fight?
Demetrious Johnson is on Twitch. One would think that he could connect his video game interest with MMA fans for more popularity.
Former UFC lightweight champion, and the only UFC fighter to grace the cover a Wheaties box, Anthony Pettis has lost his last 3 fights.
Cody East, the fighter found by Dana White, was stopped by Walt Harris in round 1 on the Early Prelims on UFC Fight Pass.
Even without Conor McGregor appearing at this event, it seemed like the biggest news was his “retirement” and then the UFC taking him off of 200.
There were only 50,000 google searches for UFC 197 nationwide the Friday before the event. This does not bode well if we are to assume the searches relate to interest and the interest relates to PPV buys. Jon Jones is not a standalone PPV star like Conor McGregor or Ronda Rousey. OSP is not someone anyone knew. Moreover, Mighty Mouse is not a PPV draw. This event likely ends up with 350,000 PPV buys as many had predicted.
April 23, 2016
The MGM Grand Garden Arena drew 11,352 fans for a gate of $2.3 million.
Bonuses were awarded to Demetrious Johnson, Yair Rodriguez, Dannyl Roberts and Dominique Steele. Each earned $50K. Roberts and Steele earned the FOTN.
The event numbers were announced by the UFC at the post-fight press conference.
Of the already 4 UFC events this year at the MGM, the event did better than February’s UFC event which was converted to a Fight Night. It also did better than Lawler-Condit in January. However, not surprising, it came second to March’s UFC 196 which featured Diaz-McGregor. Notably, Jon Jones’ last event at the MGM was UFC 182 which drew 11,575 for $3.7M. Slightly more in attendance but its clear the tickets were more expensive for Jones-Cormier.
April 17, 2016
UFC on Fox 19 drew 11,273 with a live gate of $1.057 million. In addition, Glover Teixeira led the group of bonus winners earning $50,000.
The numbers were announced at the post-fight press conference.
The event took place at the Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida. Saturday night’s event ranked third among UFC cards in the state.
- UFC on Fox 17: 14,459 ($1.710,000 gate)
- UFC on Fox 11: 14,410 ($1,651.776)
- UFC on Fox 19: 11,273 ($1,057,000)
- UFC on FX 3: 6,635 ($329,110)
- UFC Fight Night 70 – 5,604 (no gate announced)
The Amalie Arena capacity ranges from 18,500 to 21,500.
The bonus went to Glover Teixeira, Michael Chiesa, Elizeu Zalieski dos Santos and Omari Akhmadov earned the $50,000 bonuses. Teixeira and Chiesa earned the Performance Bonuses while dos Santos and Akhmedov earned Fight of the Night which aired as a Fight Pass exclusive.
Overall a good event which could have fallen off due to the loss of Tony Ferguson due to injury and Lyoto Machida due to failing a drug test. In addition, IIslam Makhachev’s fight with Drew Dober was nixed due to Makhachev failing a drug test. Still it was an entertaining night of fights with the Fight of the Night being a very entertaining battle. The Performance Bonuses could have gone to Jon Dodson and Michael Dodson as well.
April 10, 2016
Derrick Lewis topped the list of fighters earning $50,000 bonuses at UFC Fight Night 86. It was the company’s first event in Croatia and the event drew over 13,000 fans.
The event taking place in Zagreb, Croatia drew 13,177 for a live gate of $549,000 U.S. dollars per the announcement in the post-fight press conference. The event took place at Arena Zagrieb. The arena maximum capacity ranges from 15,200-18,800 depending on the configuration of the sporting event or concert.
In addition to Lewis, Mairbek Taisumov, Jared Cannonier and Alejandro Perez earned $50,000 Performance of the Night Fight bonuses. There were no Fight of the Night bonuses.
The bonuses, attendance and gate were announced at the post-fight press conference.
Below is a list of this year’s international Fight Nights.
|2/22/2016||UFC Fight Night 84||London, England||16,734||$2,000,000|
|2/27/2016||UFC Fight Night 85||Brisbane, Australia||9,552||$1,000,000|
|4/10/2016||UFC Fight Night 86||Zagreib, Croatia||13,177||$549,000|
It was a good turnout for a Sunday in Croatia. The event drew the second-highest attendance despite a low U.S. dollar gate. No word on the comps for the event but the amount of fans that came to the event likely means a return to the country.