Today, Ultimate Fighting Championship's (UFC) President Dana White took the time out of his busy schedule promoting this weekend's UFC Fight Night 26: "Shogun vs. Sonnen" event on Fox Sports 1 to address Bellator MMA and its upcoming pay-per-view (PPV) experiment.
See the video here.
The "Rampage vs. Tito" event, which is scheduled to take place on Nov. 2, 2013, from the Long Beach Arena in California, will be headlined by Quinton Jackson vs. Tito Ortiz. After news of rematches between Michael Chandler vs. Eddie Alvarez and now Muhammed Lawal vs. Emanuel Newton dropped earlier this week, many fans now see this event as a Bellator "super card" of sorts.
Based on UFC's track record when rival promotions have put on blockbuster events in the past, one would expect UFC to dive deep into their roster and counter Bellator MMA with a stacked card of their own.
White dispelled of this popular notion because he just wasn't feeling very competitive (via MMA Fighting):
"I'm sure you guys saw, when they did the press conference, all they talked about was me. What are they going to talk about, the fight? My video blog does more f--- viewers than their television show does. I'm not feeling very competitive."
For the most part, White has steered clear of Bellator and its company CEO, Bjorn Rebney. But these comments go a long way in establishing the way a megalith such as UFC views a mixed martial arts (MMA) landscape they seemingly own.
It can't even be bothered.
The big news coming out of all this, is the fact that UFC will not offer alternative programming on the second of November, like it did here and here, which means Bellator will sink or swim based on its own merits. There is no debating what a card on free television from UFC would do to derail a successful Bellator buy rate.
Even Bellator tried it a few times.
But is UFC's ego getting in the way of successful business tactics, or is it correct in forecasting the strongest Bellator card in the company's history will be an unmitigated failure?
Weigh in below.