UFC Fight Night 126 attendance, gate and bonuses

February 18, 2018

UFC Fight Night 126 was a fast-paced evening with early-stoppage and exciting action Sunday night.  Derrick Lewis led the list of bonus winners with his KO of Marcin Tybura.

Lewis, Curtis Millender, Brandon Davis and Steven Petersen earned the $50,000 bonuses for the night.  Millender earned the other Performance Bonus while Davis and Petersen earned Fight of the Night.

Despite being held on the ground in the previous round, Lewis used his power to KO Tybura in the third round for the stoppage.  Millender stopped Thiago Alves with stunning left knee to Alves’ head which put him on the canvas without a need for Millender to follow him to the ground.  Davis earned a unanimous decision over Petersen.

The event took place at the Frank Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.  The event drew 10,502 for a live gate of $794,350.  Out of 3 visits to Austin, Texas, it had the highest gate and attendance.

The UFC announced the attendance, bonus and gate post-event.

Payout Perspective:

The event saw Donald Cerrone stop Yancy Medeiros in the first round which highlighted a night with 8 of the 12 fights ending in stoppages and 6 of those ending in the first round.  It was surprising that Cerrone did not receive a Performance Bonus although Lewis and Millender had impressive stoppages.  There also a variety of other fights to choose from for the honor.

UFC Fight Night 125 attendance and bonuses

February 4, 2018

The UFC announced the attendance and bonuses for Fight Night 125 from Belem, Brazil.

Thiago Santos, Anthony Smith, Valentina Shevchenko and Iuri Alcantara drew the $50,000 bonuses for the event.  Santos and Smith earned Fight of the Night while Shevchenko and Alcantara earned Performance Bonuses.

The event drew 10,444 fans with no gate being announced.  The event took place at the Mangueirinha Gymnasium in Belem, Para, Brazil.

The numbers were announced post-event.

UFC on Fox 27 attendance, gate and bonuses

January 27, 2018

UFC on Fox 27 took place Saturday night from Charlotte, North Carolina.  Ronaldo Souza headlined the card and took home a $50,000 fight bonus for his stoppage of Derek Brunson.

In addition, Mirsad Bektic, Drew Dober and Frank Camacho took home $50,000 bonuses.  Bektic earned a Performance Bonus with a TKO of Godofredo Pepey.  Drew Dober and Frank Camacho earned Fight of the Night on the main card on Fox with Dober earning a unanimous decision.

The event drew 10,249 for a gate of $944,000.  The event took place at Spectrum Center in Charlotte.

Notably, last year’s UFC on Fox event in January 2017 drew 13,233 and a gate of $1,020,434.  The main event featured Valentina Shevchenko submitting Julianna Pena.  It also had Jorge Masvidal stopping Donald Cerrone.

Payout Perspective:

The attendance and gate is similar to that of a Fight Night card.  With the fighters on this card, it felt like a Fight Night card.  This may not bode well with the network ratings.  We shall see if enough people stayed home to watch the event.  Souza looked impressive in stopping Brunson as he registered another stoppage over the North Carolina native.

UFC 220 attendance, gate and bonuses

January 20, 2018

Daniel Cormier led the list of Performance Bonuses for UFC 220. The event at the TD Garden in Boston drew a record attendance for the company in the venue.

Cormier looked impressive in a 2nd Round stoppage of Volkan Oezdemir and earned a $50,000 Performance Bonus.  In addition,  Abdul Razak Alhassan, Calvin Kattar and Shane Burgos earned the other $50,000 bonuses.  Alhassan earned his Performance Bonus with a KO of Sobah Homasi.  The Fight of the Night went to Kattar and Burgos with the Boston native earning a third-round stoppage.

There were 16.015 in attendance for a gate of $2.45 million.  The number of fans in attendance was a record for an event by the UFC at the TD Garden. UFC 118 drew a higher gate when the event featuring Frankie Edgar-BJ Penn II drew $2.8 million.

The UFC announced the information post-fight.

Payout Perspective

The number in attendance reflects the popularity of the UFC in Boston.  Two title fights also provided some interest in the card.  Still, over 16,000 for the event ensures that Boston will always be a part of the annual tour for the UFC.

UFC Fight Night 124 attendance, gate and bonuses

January 14, 2018

UFC Fight Night 124 in St. Louis took place on Sunday night.  The headliners, Jeremy Stephens and Doo Ho Choi took home bonuses for Fight of the Night.

The bonuses and numbers were announced post fight.

Stephens also secured a Performance Bonus for his second-round stoppage over the self-proclaimed Korean Superboy.  In addition, Polo Reyes and Darren Elkins earned Performance Bonuses for their stoppages.  All earned $50,000 each.  Stephens drew two bonuses for $100,000.

The event in St. Louis drew 10,052 fans for a gate of $812,995 at the Scottrade Center.  It was the first visit to St. Louis for the company and just the second to the state of Missouri.

Payout Perspective:

The attendance and gate are slightly lower than last year’s Sunday night January event from Phoenix.  But, that event featured the return of BJ Penn.  Still, the St. Louis numbers are very good for a new city the company visited.  Stephens win may put him up against another winner tonight, Darren Elkins.

2017: The year in boxing

January 6, 2018

2017 was a great year for boxing which saw some great fights and the spectacle that was Mayweather-McGregor.

The year started off with the talk about Mayweather-McGregor as the UFC’s lightweight champion stirred the pot by going on a rant on Instagram where he wrote “F*** the UFC.”  Dana White warned that if Conor went on without the UFC it would be an “epic fall.”

January also saw Al Haymon get a court victory with a dismissal of Golden Boy’s Antitrust lawsuit.  In a ruling which did not include oral argument, the Judge determined that Golden Boy did not come fort with genuine issues of fact to support its claims.  Most importantly, and a word of caution for the Plaintiffs in the UFC Antitrust lawsuit, the Judge reiterated that the antitrust laws protect competition, not competitors.

Although Golden Boy suffered the loss in court, it inked a deal with ESPN with 42 fights airing on ESPN starting in March 2017.  As the prevailing party, they requested legal costs in the amount nearing $35,0000.  Golden Boy appealed the dismissal but it appears that the sides resolved the case as the appeal was dismissed by agreement of the parties.

The Deontay Wilder-Alexander Povetkin/World of Boxing lawsuit went to trial in February and it did not take long for a jury to decide that Povetkin took Meldonium after January 1, 2016.  However, the case continues with the parties litigating the other claims as well as the issue who receives the millions of dollars that has been placed in escrow.

Wilder was also sued by rival Dominic Breazeale for a hotel melee.  The case was thrown out as the episode happened in Alabama but Breazeale sued in California.

Showtime Boxing had the highest rating of 2017 with Adrian Broner taking on Adrian Granados drawing 779,000 viewers.  The fight also aired on Twitter as the service continued to expand its offering of streamingClaressa Shields became the first female boxer to headline an event on premium network television. In March.

The GGG-Daniel Jacobs PPV drew between 130-150K PPV buys.  GGG’s next PPV appearance against Canelo would draw much higher as the draw drew 1.2 million buys.  The fight also had a higher price tag than usual:  $79.99 HD.  A rematch for May 2018 seems imminent.

March saw the second highest-rating for network viewership as Keith Thurman faced Danny Garcia in the battle of unbeatens on CBS.  The fight drew 5.1 million viewers while the overall telecast drew 2.7 million viewers.

After going through a lot of money, the viability of the PBC obtaining a media rights deal was brought into question.  Its deal with Spike TV ended but the organization found a home on FS1.

In 2017, it seemed as those everyone applied for a boxing license:  Conor, Nate Diaz, Cyborg…

Anthony Joshua faced Vladimir Klitschko in one of the biggest fights of the year.  The event aired live on Showtime and tape delay on HBO.

May’s Canelo Alvarez-Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. PPV drew 1.3 million buys and its replay on HBO drew 769,000 viewers.

In May, we took a look at where was Boxing’s next PPV star.  Aside from Canelo Alvarez, there are several contenders to be the next star on PPV including Anthony Joshua.

In June, The Money Fight was announced.

Also in June, Top Rank announced that it had a deal with ESPN to air fights with the first one being Manny Pacquiao fighting Jeff Horn in Australia on July 1st.  The debut earned big numbers as Pacquiao lost a controversial decision to Horn.

The Andre Ward-Sergey Kovalev II PPV in June drew between 130-135K PPV buys.

July saw a 4-city tour to promote the Mayweather-McGregor bouts.  It was an ambitious tour that fans clamored to be a part.  It was announced that the PPV price would be $99.95 HD.

The Money Fight drew huge numbers and was a big financial success.  We wrote about it here.  The event had streaming issues on both UFC Fight Pass and Showtime platforms.  As you might expect, there were lawsuits which are still matriculating through the court system.

Despite the big event, HBO ran an event featuring Miguel Cotto and it did well considering as it drew 730,000 viewers.

Capitalizing on the publicity of The Money Fight, announced an ESPN deal which will include airing its fight library on an OTT service that will launch in 2018.

Austin Trout sued the WBO which included claims under the Ali Act.  The case was moved to federal court in Puerto Rico where the WBO is seeking to dismiss the case and move it to arbitration.  The case will be an interesting look as to whether the court will allow a claim under the Ali Act will go to arbitration.

In September, Magomed Abdusalamov settled with the state of New York for $22 million for injuries sustained in a fight in 2013.  Abdusalamov was left with a brain injury and paralysis due to improper conduct and lack of training by the New York State Athletic Commission.

A huge ESPN fight between Vasiliy Lomachenko and Guillermo Rigondeux drew 1.73 million viewers.  The overall telecast drew 1.487 million viewers.

In December, Showtime announced Mayweather-McGregor drew 4.3 million domestic PPV buys.  This is off from the 6.7 million Dana White had stated.  After hearing of the announcement, White took issue with Showtime’s numbers.

One of the bigger stories to watch going into 2018 is the announcement by Dana White that he will be promoting boxing.  Zuffa Boxing, a t-shirt worn by White during The Money Fight press tour, was a hint that White was up to something.  White made it official late in the year.  He indicated that he was meeting with Floyd Mayweather.  Despite stating that he will never work with Showtime again, he said he would be willing work with other promoters with the exception of Bob Arum.

UFC 219: Payout Perspective

January 2, 2018

Welcome to another addition of Payout Perspective.  This time around we are taking a look at UFC 219 taking place in Las Vegas at T-Mobile Arena.

Cyborg defeats game Holm

It took all 5 rounds but Cristane “Cyborg” Justino defeated Holly Holm via unanimous decision.  Holm made Cyborg work for the win but she was still too much for the former women’s Bantamweight champ.

It’s not clear what’s next for Cyborg as she has no equal in a division the UFC made for her.  Amanda Nunes seems like a stretch for Cyborg and Meeghan Anderson is an uncertainty.  Holm will likely go back down to 135 where she can still put on some interesting fights.

Khabib overwhelms Barboza

Khabib Nurmogomedov utterly destroyed Edson Barboza securing 10-8 rounds from all of the judges.  His grappling and ground and pound were devastating and the look on Barboza’s face while on the ground told a story of a fighter’s will be taken away from him.

Assuming that Khabib’s weight cutting issues are in the past, we should see him fight Tony Ferguson and/or Conor McGregor next.  The best scenario for the UFC is for Khabib to fight Ferguson in the spring with the winner going on to face Conor in July at International Fight Week.

Attendance, Gate and Bonuses

The event drew 13,561 fans for a gate of $1.76 million at the T-Mobile Arena.  In comparison, UFC 213 drew 12,834 for $2.4 million and UFC 216 drew 10,638 for a gate of $677,999.50.  UFC 213 and 216 were the other two events held at the T-Mobile Arena.

Last December’s UFC 207 featuring the return of Ronda Rousey drew 18,533 for a gate of $4.75 million.

Bonuses for UFC 219 went to Cyborg, Holm, Khabib and Tim Elliott.  Cyborg and Holm earned Fight of the Night while Khabib and Elliott earned Performances of the Night.

Salaries

Purses for the main card fights were disclosed by the Nevada Athletic Commission.  The women’s Featherweight champion earned $500,000 while the challenger drew $300,000.

Other salaries disclosed:

Khabib Nurmogomedov $80,000/$80,000

Edson Barboza $75,000/$75,000 (if Barboza won)

Carlos Condit’s $115,000/$115,000

Neil Magny $70,000/$70,000.

Cynthia Calvillo $41,000/$41,000

Carla Esparza $36,000/$36,000.

Promotion of the Fight

The UFC Embeddeds seemed sporadic this time around as the first one surfaced on Tuesday due to

Christmas being on Monday.  But, there were two Embedded episodes uploaded on Saturday for a total of five episodes.  Either did not have time due to the holiday or not enough content.

The original Netflix Film “Bright” used UFC 219 to promote its movie.  The UFC promoted the event in multiple social media posts.  It appears the UFC was paid by Netflix for the promotion.

Sponsors

In the Octagon, it was the first time we saw Motel 6.  This might be potential for another official sponsor.  In addition, Air Asia, Gruntstyle.com, MetroPCS, Budweiser, Monster Energy, AM/PM, Harley Davidson, Hospital for Special Surgery and Netflix’s original movie, “Bright” were in the Octagon.

EA’s UFC 3 had the fighter prep point.

The Will Smith Netflix movie used UFC 219 as a way to activate and reach out to the UFC demo.  Netflix worked with the UFC in developing a social media campaign which centered around one of the movie’s main characters pretending to become an MMA fighter and facing Heavyweight Travis Browne.  The movie, despite widespread poor reviews, received over 11 million views in just 3 days of availability on Netflix.

It was the last time we will see Budweiser in the Octagon as its sponsorship contract ended and Modelo Especial will now be the official beer maker for the UFC.  The move allows the company to seek hard alcohol sponsors as Anheuser Busch InBev prevented the UFC from taking on hard liquor sponsors.

Metro PCS also had Periscope ancillary coverage featuring Demetrious Johnson.

Toyo Tires sponsored the UFC Embedded episodes.

It looks like you will see Cyborg on 7-11 Big Gulps in the near future.

 

Odds and ends

Cyborg used UFC 219 to promote a drive to collect toys for local children in Las Vegas.  A good gesture especially during the holidays.

Tito Ortiz made a cameo on the Embedded episodes and the UFC Hall of Famer cornered her during the fight.

Speaking of corners Ben Askren made an appearance in the UFC octagon.

There was the photographer controversy which made me wonder why a gym needs a “photographer” with media credentials. The UFC has now revoked is credentials for good.

More disappointing performance:  Carlos Condit or Cynthia Calvillo.  Condit was expected to come back with avengence after a long layoff.  Calvillo is an up and coming fighter that hope to climb the ratings ladder.  Both lost although I would suggest Condit had the worst outing as he looked nothing like he used to while Calvillo lost a controversial split decision.

There were over 1 million searches for “UFC 219” on Saturday night which ranked second in searches in the United States to “New Year’s Eve 2017”

The UFC weigh-ins on Friday drew 138,000 viewers and 0.04 in the A18-49 on FS1.

Conclusion

Despite being the end of year event, UFC 219 starved from a lack of buzz.  But the over 1 million searches for UFC 219 may mean that there were more casual fans looking for the event than originally estimated.  Cyborg-Holm does not feel like a huge PPV event although I will estimate this event draws between 250K-300K buys.

UFC 219 attendance, gate and bonuses

December 30, 2017

UFC 219 ended 2017 with a reported 13,561 attending for a gate of $1.76 million.  The main event also was deemed Fight of the Night with Cris “Cyborg” Justino pulling off the unanimous decision over Holly Holm.

The official gate per UFC officials (via MMA Junkie) was $1,760,628.74.  The event pales in comparison to last December’s UFC 207 which 18,533 for a live gate of $4.75 million.  Of course, that event featured the return of Ronda Rousey.

The bonuses of the night went to Cyborg-Holm for Fight of the Night.  Khabib Nurmogomedov and Tim Elliott drew the Performance Bonus.  Each earned $50,000.  The return of the “Eagle” was impressive as he buried Edson Barboza.

 

UFC on Fox 26 attendance, gate and bonuses

December 16, 2017

Bonuses for UFC on Fox 26 happened early as all awards were given to Prelim fighters.

Alessio Di Chirico, Nordine Taleb, Julian Marquez and Darren Stewart received the $50,000 bonuses.  The bonuses were announced post-event by the UFC.  Marquez and Steward were awarded the Fight of the Night while DiChirico and Taleb drew Performance Bonuses.

Di Chirico stopped Oluwale Bamgbose in the first televised fight of the prelims with a knee to the head of his tentative opponent.

Taleb enjoyed a quick stoppage of Danny Roberts within a minute of the first round.

The event in Winnipeg from the Bell MTS Place drew 8,862 for a gate of $781,000 according to the UFC.  The last time the UFC was in Winnipeg was in June 2013 for the less-than-impressive UFC 161.  Still, the event drew 14,754 for a gate of $3.15 million.

Payout Perspective:

If not for missing weight, I would think that Josh Emmett would have received a bonus for his main card KO of favorite Ricardo Lamas.  The event did not draw as many for the UFC’s return to the area but this card did not have a lot of drawing power.  Going up against the NFL on Saturday night, one has to think it draws one of its lower December ratings since being on Fox.

UFC Fight Night 123 attendance, gate and bonuses

December 10, 2017

UFC Fight Night 123 drew 7,605 fans for a gate of $528,290.  Brian Ortega was the star of the night earning two bonuses for his main event submission over Cub Swanson.

Ortega and Swanson received a bonus for Fight of the Night.  Ortega received another for his submission victory in round 2.  Marlon Moraes drew the other $50,000 bonus of the night for his devastating knee of Aljamain Sterling.

The first UFC event from Fresno drew 7,605 fans at the SaveMart Center.  The reported gate, according to UFC officials, was 568,290.

Payout Perspective:

The SaveMart Center was far from a sellout as the capacity for boxing/wrestling events is 16,182.  But, with the Fight Night event, these are the types of attendances to expect.  Notably, the attendance is the same as UFC Fight Night 112 from Oklahoma earlier this year.  The UFC may have found another fighter to put into the mix for Max Holloway’s title as Brian Ortega put on another great performance.

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