The biggest MMA news to date was dropped today as the Ultimate Fighting Championship signed a network television deal with FOX and its sister stations FX and Fuel TV. While rumors of the deal had surfaced earlier this week, the formal announcement was made today at the NFL on Fox studio in Los Angeles, California.
In what looked more like a NFL halftime show then a major sports press conference, UFC President Dana White along with Lorenzo Fertitta and Executives from FOX, FX and Fuel TV explained the new deal before fielding questions from the media. The Network deal is massive but the actual details of the deal offer a lot to take in and digest for us all. To help understand the deal here is a bullet point breakdown of the deal between the UFC and FOX sports.
7 year deal between the UFC & FOX
4 major UFC events a year on FOX
- First event will be on Nov. 12th
2 seasons of The Ultimate Fighter a year (Starting with TUF 15)
- Show will now be filmed week to week with that weeks show being edited and aired on Friday
- The show will be a lead into the weeks LIVE fight on Friday
- The opening fight will be picked by the coaches, after that the fans will now control who fights each week through votes (think American Idol)
32 live events a year on FX that includes:
- 24 live TUF fights (12 for each of the two seasons)
- 2 Ultimate Fighter Finale’s
- 6 UFC Fight Nights
Fuel TV will:
- Air Preliminary bouts leading into PPV events like Spike TV currently does
- Have pre and post PPV shows using FOX guys
- Air UFC unleashed programming
Pay Per Views will continue but will be getting an overhaul
- Gone is the Gladiator intro
- Look and Graphic will also be changed
That’s 12 full live UFC events and 24 live TUF fights a year on free TV, along with the PPV’s and prelims on both Fuel TV and Facebook (unconfirmed).
The UFC on FOX deal is going to change the way fans watch the UFC from top to bottom, let’s just hope we don’t see the FoxTrac on fighters punches or kicks.
Let us know what you think of the Network deal between the UFC and FOX. Will it open new doors for other promotions, like Bellator moving from MTV2 over the Spike TV……
Picture Courtesy of UFC on Fox
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