Welcome to Midnight Mania!
Dana White is insistent that the deal with ESPN to stream pay-per-views (PPV) events solely through ESPN+ is great for the company, the fighters, and most of all, the fans.
“People will get nervous about this streaming thing. I hate to break it to you guys, but streaming is where everything is going. So, if you have Netflix, if you have Hulu, if you have any of this stuff at home, that’s basically what ESPN+ is. You get it the same exact way as Netflix and these other streaming services.”
White sat down with Megan Olivi and gave his spin on the deal, saying that ESPN is perfectly aligned with their goals. He also said UFC is now one of the top four sports in the United States. He is correct about one thing: ESPN is promoting fighters in a way FOX never did. UFC has struggled to promote individual fighters in the past besides a handful of its top-tier talent. ESPN is giving those fighters an unprecedented chance to shine.
Whether he is right about streaming and the PPV events is an entirely different question. Many fans are still watching cable. To buy a PPV, one will need a subscription to ESPN+ (free trail here), raising the barrier to entry for casual fans. People won’t be flipping through their cable on Saturday night and decide to buy a PPV — they will need to already be subscribers. Moreover, with many fights still airing on ESPN, one can’t even cut out cable entirely as a hardcore fan, which would be a nice option.
However, as White said, many of the details haven’t been worked out yet. If ESPN+ really is able to put together bundle deals to save on PPV costs throughout the year, the deal could still have upside. One interesting wrinkle is that we won’t get independent PPV estimates any more; those relied-on connections journalists have with cable provider insiders. White and ESPN will have tighter control over that information, so we may not know about the true impact of this deal for a long time.
Do you think the new PPV deal will be a positive or negative for the UFC in the long run?
This poll is closed
I’ll be watching no matter where it shows!
I won’t be buying PPVs any more
Yes, this IS evil.
Whoever made this is evil pic.twitter.com/GeuTYqIo2d— StipeTapped.com (@Stipe__Tapped) March 18, 2019
This was helpful from “Big” John McCarthy to explain the Danny Roberts fiasco. The fight should not have been called, he was out of that armbar when the referee stopped it.
A scream of pain is to be considered a verbal tap by the referee. But, it must be a scream. I use to tell fighters all the time I will let you grunt, groan or summon the gods of stupid strength with a Arrrggghhhh, but don’t scream out like you just turned into an 8 year old https://t.co/w2RFKAiJTk— Big John McCarthy (@JohnMcCarthyMMA) March 18, 2019
No, one knockout — no matter how awesome — does not earn a title shot, especially when Demian Maia outwrestled you fairly recently and the champion is Kamaru Usman.
#theresurrection https://t.co/1HKpznpJph— Jorge Masvidal UFC (@GamebredFighter) March 18, 2019
Masvidal has the correct take here on Ben Askren.
He needs to be a man and run it back with Robbie first before anyone takes him seriously https://t.co/ORQgryhR5j— Jorge Masvidal UFC (@GamebredFighter) March 18, 2019
Conor McGregor had some choice words for Max Holloway after Holloway destroyed him with a tweet-storm, and Holloway loved it. Apologies to “Cowboy,” but this is the fight to make if Holloway wins at UFC 236.
There you go that's the OG champ champ the world wants. I do have it. White belt bum 21 year old Max gave it to me to return to you in Dublin. Glad you found your confidence again in Boston. You can find your ACL again in Vegas in July— Max Holloway (@BlessedMMA) March 17, 2019
“Gamebred” doing great with this 10-year challenge ...
#10YearChallenge pic.twitter.com/V6q5AdXe4J— Jorge Masvidal UFC (@GamebredFighter) March 17, 2019
The upswell of support for Tony Ferguson has been great to see, and it was encouraging to hear him say he’s getting the help he needs.
View this post on Instagram
"Champ Shit Only" Thank you all for the great support! I'm in a great spirits, UFC & Management are helping me find the help we need. I'm getting all of your messages, keep em' coming!!! Thank you very much for the kind words, my family & team appreciates it Lots of Love my Social Media Fam, keep the Faith couldnt do this sh-- without you- Champ Batting Clean Up TonyFergusonxt.com
Everyone has probably seen this a few times by now, but just a reminder that Jorge Masvidal is really about that life.
WHOA MASVIDAL THROWING HANDS WITH LEON EDWARDS BACKSTAGE #UFCLondon pic.twitter.com/VEOTAhI6gg— MMAClay (@clay_mma) March 16, 2019
He might not have a choice, given he ran from them to fight in London after they told him he couldn’t fight (details).
After his #UFCLondon win, Jack Marshman says he’s going to retire from his full time job in the paratroopers to focus on fighting pic.twitter.com/APcIjya9rw— Peter Carroll (@PetesyCarroll) March 16, 2019
Mirror’s Edge stuff!
WTF?!?! pic.twitter.com/Eu8LtST7EU— Dana White (@danawhite) March 15, 2019
Putting a rib back??
A ... cheesedonkey. Okay. I’ve never heard that technique name before. I want to try it, though.
Slips, Rips, and KO Clips
This is one of those all-time classic knockouts. Masvidal is so good at punching in combination, he lands two more on the way down and then another on the ground for good measure.
March 17, 2019
Muay Thai is such a unique species of violence. You don’t see this kind of exchange in boxing or even MMA.
Decisive way to end a fight here at #AbsoluteMuayThai pic.twitter.com/pfg13XXRbt— UFC FIGHT PASS (@UFCFightPass) March 18, 2019
It seems like judo offers an endless supply of these:
Sometimes double underhooks work!
Day7 #ozeki #Goeido often chokes when things heat up and he’s only faced one #sanyaku so far. Now he must contend with #komusubi #Mitakeumi to test his mercurial mettle. #Sumo #harubasho pic.twitter.com/LMGOIXTqy8— SumoSoul (@TheSumoSoul) March 16, 2019
Sometimes, they don’t.
Day9- I thought this’d be a long battle and it was. #Ozeki #Tochinoshin (L) handily beat undefeated #Ichinojo ystrdy, but he is #kadoban, and he hasn’t pulled his fat out of the fire yet. Foe is last winless #rikishi #Shodai. #Sumo #harubasho pic.twitter.com/WYCYXUhQ0Z— SumoSoul (@TheSumoSoul) March 18, 2019
Just when you think it’s two bulls one turns into a matador ...
Day9 #ozeki aiming #Takakeisho gets a real run for his money (kensho?) from 5-3 #Chiyotairyu, but can Tairyu finish the job? #Sumo #harubasho pic.twitter.com/Sd8peab7TO— SumoSoul (@TheSumoSoul) March 18, 2019
Greatest thing you’ve ever seen. #Sports pic.twitter.com/aGcCdjxYf3— Rex Chapman (@RexChapman) March 16, 2019
I’m done Goodnight pic.twitter.com/OX4F2bxU7w— Ffs OMG Vids (@Ffs_OMG) March 17, 2019
It’s good to know Messi is out there doing his thing still, being the best ever ...
What a goal. HOLY JESUS!!! Speechless #Messi pic.twitter.com/hSbR4T2WU9— Tanisha Arya (@WweTanishaArya) March 18, 2019
Sleep well, Maniacs! A better tomorrow is always possible. Follow me on Twitter and Facebook @Vorpality