It seems unbelievable that a UFC event has not been held in Brazil since 1998. Even more shocking is the fact that this event occurred a whole two years before Dana White and the Fertitta Brothers formed Zuffa and purchased the fledgling promotional company.
Since their 2000 acquisition of the UFC the promotion has exploded into the number one MMA promotion in the world and has expanded their global imprint by holding cards in Europe, the Middle East, and Australia. Still, it is a bit perplexing that Zuffa has been slow to make a return to the country that many herald as the birthplace of MMA as we know it.
Granted, many would say that Brazil is not exactly a viable market for making a profitable promotion. Like most countries in the world, Brazil has been reeling from the global downturn in the economy. Making matters worse, despite its contributions to modern MMA as we know it, soccer still reigns supreme in the country.
Though, it looks as if Brazilians are beginning to take notice of their countrymen’s chronicled success in MMA. On Monday the UFC announced that their upcoming August 27 card in Rio de Janeiro has sold out in 74 minutes. The ticket allotment for the HSBC Arena was 16,572 and these have all been swopped up presumably by an army of jingoistic Brazilians. Of course it has to be said that this card, dubbed UFC Rio by fight fans, features some of the greatest Brazilian fighters including Anderson Silva and “Big Nog” Nogueria.
So, yeah I would say that this is going to be a pretty big deal.