What a long, strange trip it's been.
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White has been on quite the roller coaster since he and the Fertitta brothers assumed control of a mixed martial arts (MMA) company in 2001 that was bleeding cash and banned in half the country.
But just look at him now!
A two million dollar investment has equaled a 2.5 billion dollar return, according to the Las Vegas fight boss, and that number has surely gone up since this original report thanks to what White calls his proudest moment as UFC president:
"FOX. No doubt about it. I mean, if you look at when we bought this company, people said we'd never get it back on pay-per-view. Television was hysterical. 'You think you're gonna get this on television?' And one of the biggest media companies in the world was absolutely, undoubtedly, impossible."
The network is paying UFC about $100 million per year under its current seven-year deal.
UFC opted for greener pastures on the FOX network (including FX and FUEL TV) after Spike TV -- original home of the groundbreaking "Ultimate Fighter" series -- balked at ZUFFA's increased licensing fees during contract negotiations back in 2011.
Spike opted to align itself with Bellator and it's been ugly ever since.
Except for White, who insists he wouldn't change a thing, even if he had a DeLorean to travel back in time and reverse one simple thing. He argues the good, as well as the bad, have helped shape the promotion into what it is today -- and that's a powerful global brand.
But will it ever fulfill this prophecy?