The UFC is nearing a brand new tv broadcast deal, seven years after it made historical past by partnering up with Fox to deliver MMA into the mainstream. Loads has modified since 2011, and we’ve seen the variety of occasions skyrocket whereas the standard of occasions plummeted. Superstars like Ronda Rousey and Conor McGregor elevated the UFC for a time, however now the “Tremendous Bowl of MMA” appears to be taking it’s assured rankings and presumably spreading them out in a joint TV deal between ESPN and Fox Sports activities. Sadly, it looks like it’s solely going to divide the fanbase additional and hit their wallets.
It’s already well-known that being an MMA fan has been traditionally powerful. The previous days have been crammed with tape buying and selling, light-night Japanese occasions, and PPV bans, however now it’s a matter of being nickel and dimed to loss of life, like a sequence of pitter-patter punches from Nick Diaz. On this potential joint TV deal between ESPN and Fox Sports activities, it’s been reported that as much as 15 occasions will happen on ESPN+, ESPN’s fledgling streaming service. Fox Sports activities will nonetheless get its share of occasions, and everyone knows the UFC will nonetheless be within the PPV enterprise. Meaning it’s going to be costly for followers. Let’s break that down.
- 12 PPVs at $60 per = $720
- 12 months of ESPN+ = $60
- A cable bundle that really will get you Fox Sports activities 1 (moderately than chopping your cords outright) which ought to price roughly $20-30 per thirty days when mixed with a good web bundle = $360 per 12 months
- 12 months of Combat Go = $120
- Whole price per 12 months, earlier than taxes, to be a passionate UFC fan: $1260
In the meantime, MLB provides a league-wide streaming service (that doesn’t can help you watch blacked-out video games or nationally televised video games dwell) for $112.99 per season. Along with the common season, there are spring coaching video games so as to add to the worth.
However wait, you may be advised to separate the price of a PPV with a bunch of associates by Dana White. However what if all your associates have moved on from the UFC, which is an more and more widespread story. Or what if your pals merely don’t like MMA? Or what if all your pals have been eaten by a bear? And why do you should crowd-fund your leisure experiences?
Take a look at the WWE Community? For $120 per 12 months, you get an unlimited library of historic occasions, each huge “PPV” present, and a plethora of authentic content material.
In an effort to get the complete fan expertise with punditry, perception, and the entire fights, you’ll have to go to the UFC’s YouTube web page, ESPN+, Fox Sports activities 1, presumably Combat Go, and perhaps the “actual ESPN.” Or you’ll be able to simply attempt to courageous the wilds of aggregation. It’s not straightforward for veteran followers, it’s a excessive barrier of entry for brand new followers, and it leaves folks questioning simply the place the subsequent fights are going to be, week after week after week. The deal isn’t carried out, it’s only a report, however these supply strategies really feel like a poor person expertise.
We perceive the UFC is a money-making enterprise, and new house owners WME-IMG have to recoup that $four billion price ticket after a number of down years, however nickel and diming their loyal followers appears short-sighted, type of like their unending circulation of interim championships.
In the event that they wish to retain and develop viewership, they can not divide it. It doesn’t work when playerbases are break up up resulting from downloadable content material in video video games, and it gained’t work right here. It would make them cash, however it gained’t make the followers glad or glad. However glad, glad followers will make them much more cash in the long term.
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