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Old 03-24-2011, 04:28 PM
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Default Josh Gross: UFC Proved Me Wrong on Co-Promotion as the Best Model

Realllly long article from FightOpinion.com referncing an interview from Sherdog.com. Josh tends to ramble a lot, so I tried to just bold the key points in each section.


I didnít get a chance to listen to this interview from last week with Josh Gross until now, but itís well worth your time to check it out. (It is a little over 35 minutes long.) There are some interesting points made throughout the interview, including a couple that I think are debatable.

His first point is that UFC buying out Strikeforce is a bigger deal than UFC buying out the PRIDE assets.
I think, yes, itís a much bigger deal than the PRIDE deal. The PRIDE deal, at the time, was an important deal and itís a very big deal, too. But this one, I think, is more important for what it portends to down the road. The Strikeforce deal suggests that there really isnít a competitor out there where fighters can have someone to go to and legitimately negotiate a deal against, you know, so fighters are now put in a position in the most basic sense theyíre negotiating against themselves and their only leverage is, essentially, their talent, their promotional visibility which is largely dictated by the person theyíre trying to negotiate with and sort of how they appeal to fans, really. Itís a much more difficult situation for fighters. Some fighters will thrive. The best fighters in the world will do very well and theyíll make a lot of money and, you know what, they probably deserve it. I think what the UFC did by creating this, yeah, itís not a monopoly, monopoly is the wrong word, people tend to use it. But they definitely have control over the industry in such a way that theyíve created a league and sort of their own sport in a way because while they run under Unified Rules and they do Mixed Martial Arts, itís really self-contained now.
I understand his viewpoint that by buying out Strikeforce, UFC eliminated their only threat remaining in the MMA íspaceí as far as locking up the best talent and killing a potential PPV threat. However, the talent Strikeforce had is, outside of a few fighters, not comparable to what PRIDE presented when they sold their deal to Zuffa. Zuffa buying PRIDE essentially wiped out the most important foreign market (at the time) for MMA and they brought in a lot of talented fighters into the mix for UFC fights. PRIDE ran a PPV in Las Vegas and they were going to do some things but it all proved to be was a smokescreen for Nobuyuki Sakakibara to sell, sell, sell.

Joshís second point is that UFC buying out Strikeforce finally creates a market scenario that UFC had been claiming they were in but now can truly say they are in.
Itís the creation of something that theyíve said they were all along but they finally are it is the way that I see it. They always said they were the NFL of Mixed Martial Arts but they are that now, you know, Dana White is the sport, like the de facto commissioner, heís not just the President of the UFC, you know. Thereís a lot of good that come from this. I donít think, you know, those of us like you and I who want to see the best fighters fight and know who the best fighter in the world is, this is terrific. This accomplishes that, generally, I think. I think almost in every case youíll see the best fighters coming together in bouts and thatís terrific for fans, itís much easier for fans to understand now. You know, there was always that brand confusion, people didnít know what other parts of the sport were and they immediately diminished them as good so I think a lot of g