NEW YORK NY - FEBRUARY 14: Boxing promotor Bob Arum looks on at a press conference to promote the Manny Pacquiao v Shane Mosley fight at The Lighthouse at Chelsea Piers on February 14 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Chris Trotman/Getty Images)
Whether you felt the event was a success or not, there's no denying the UFC made history this past Saturday night (Nov. 12, 2011) by broadcasting its Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos heavyweight championship fight live and free on network TV.
For whatever reason, they did this on the very same night that boxing great Manny Pacquiao returned to the ring to do battle against Juan Manuel Marquez in an exciting but controversial pay-per-view bout.
So leave it to the 80-year-old promoter of that fight, Bob Arum, to fire a few shots at MMA. From NYPost.com:
"They thought they would hurt us. Instead they got hurt because they got buried. But I think the fact they're just on for an hour helps us."
His first point, that UFC got hurt because they got buried underneath all the Pacquiao vs. Marquez 3 coverage definitely has some merit. In fact, despite mainly covering MMA, our traffic indicates a strong lean towards the big boxing fight last night. Actually, it was a complete blowout.
The second point Arum makes also has merit, considering UFC President Dana White actually told his audience to watch the Velasquez vs. Dos Santos fight before tuning into the Pacquiao match. And, apparently, that's exactly what they did.
The 5.7 million viewers UFC on FOX garnered was most definitely a success but might it have done better if it wasn't "buried" underneath a highly anticipated boxing match featuring one of the biggest draws in combat sports?