ProSieben: UFC strikes television deal in Germany


If at first you don't succeed, try, try and try again.

Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) recently reached terms with a German television network, ProSieben, to air its mixed martial arts-related programming. It marks the fourth time that the sport will be introduced to the market through the airwaves.

Premiere -- the primary pay-per-view (PPV) provider in the region -- stopped airing live UFC events in 2006 after disappointing buy rates, according to a report on FreeFightVideos.com. In fact, UFC 57: "Liddell vs Couture 3" in February of that year was its last offering, which is a bit interesting because rumors have swirled that the pair would meet four a fourth time in Germany.

That's right, the promotion plans to make its debut in the "Fatherland" with UFC 99 at the Lanxess Arena in Cologne on June 13, 2009. And aging but still popular icons Liddell and Couture are the early favorites to headline the card either against one another or separate opponents.

While nothing is official at this time, Couture is the "natural" selection to participate on the card at the very least because he is fluent in German, spending four years of U.S. Army service stationed at the "Fliegerhorst" base of Langendiebach in Erlensee in a former lifetime.

Expect more news like this in the future because of the promotion's intent on global expansion.

England and Ireland have already or intend to host recent events. And European neighbors Italy and Sweden could be next. In addition, UFC also has its sights set on penetrating Australia, Japan, Mexico, Philippines and Dubai, among other foreign lands in the near future.

It's all part of UFC President Dana White's master plan to one day become the most popular sport in the world, eclipsing the very popular soccer and American football. And in order to do that people do need to see it to buy into it.

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