Maybe Dana White is the world's most influential man after all.
After weeks of a back-and-forth struggle between the UFC and Vancouver politicians reluctant to host an MMA event, UFC 115 is finally set for the largest city in Western Canada on June 12 at the GM Place.
The UFC confirmed the good news earlier today.
News that UFC 115 was likely to not take place in Vancouver, and instead possibly make its new home in Cincinnati, Ohio, broke just a few days ago. The issue at hand was a dispute with insurance policies for the event, which would have added significant cost concerns for Zuffa.
But it appears those disputes have been settled and the world's largest fight promotion can stick another feather in its cap.
"Our Canadian fans are among the most loyal and enthusiastic in the world, and we are thrilled to bring the UFC to Vancouver. We want to thank Mayor Gregor Robertson and our partners at Canucks Sports and Entertainment for helping to make UFC 115 become the first UFC event in British Columbia."
The UFC has long had its eye on Vancouver ever since its first foray into Canada at UFC 83: "Serra vs. St. Pierre 2," which set a North American attendance record for the sport at 21,390 people. That record held until the promotion’s second trip to Canada at UFC 97: "Redemption" (21,451 fans).
UFC Executive Vice President Lawrence Epstein said that Canadian fans account for 15 to 20 percent of the promotion’s business, which he called its largest per capita success story.
And the boku bucks a UFC event brings to the local economy doesn't hurt either.
From Mayor Gregor Robertson:
"Vancouver fans will be thrilled that the UFC is coming here. We've worked hard to bring it to Vancouver and I want to thank UFC and Canucks Sports and Entertainment for making the event possible. Vancouver has some of the most passionate UFC fans in the world, and I have no doubt that General Motors Place will be packed on June 12th."
Here's how the UFC 115 fight card is shaping up:
Chuck Liddell vs. Tito Ortiz*
Patrick Barry vs. Mirko "Cro Cop" Filipovic*
Ben Rothwell vs. Gilbert Yvel*
Evan Dunham vs. Tyson Griffin*
Martin Kampmann vs. Paulo Thiago*
Mac Danzig vs. Matt Wiman*
Carlos Condit vs. Rory MacDonald*
Jesse Lennox vs. Mike Pyle*
Peter Sobotta vs. James Wilks*
Claude Patrick vs. TBA*
*Fight not officiallly announced by UFC.com
The UFC has yet to announce any bouts for the June 15 event, but keep it locked in to MMAmania.com for official fight match ups as soon as they're confirmed.