Late last week, UFC President Dana White made the surprising claim that, despite the lack of appearances from its biggest stars, the UFC is having it’s biggest year ever.
Unsurprisingly, this claim from White generated some criticism from MMA’s discerning fans, who pointed out that Pay-Per-View sales seem to be down.
Speaking to the media at the UFC 217 post-fight press conference, White issued a colorful response to those who want to comment on the UFC’s business and PPV sales.
“Whose indications [that PPV are down] are that?” He said. “People who don’t know what the fuck they’re talking about. If you don’t know what’s going on in our business, how can you speculate that we’re having a bad year? This is the best year, by a long shot, in the company’s history. Boom.”
White then added that the UFC accomplished this best year yet without the aid of Conor McGregor, Ronda Rousey, and many other big names.
“Ronda [Rousey] didn’t fight. Conor [McGregor] didn’t fight in MMA. Jon Jones fought once. And Anderson Silva, Chuck Liddell – the list goes on and on and on. The business is kicking ass. Best year ever, by a long shot.”
That said, the UFC boss admitted that much of this year’s success can be attributed to McGregor’s blockbuster boxing match with Floyd Mayweather Jr., which the UFC had a stake in.
“You can’t take that out; it happened,” White said. “And if that didn’t happen, Conor would have fought twice this year. You can’t take it out. Who cares if it’s a boxing match? It’s revenue that the company made that we spent four months of our resources promoting.”
Do you believe the UFC is really having it’s best year ever? Or is this the latest bit of hyperbole from UFC President Dana White?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 7/11/2017.