UFC Pay Per Views: More Is More

Tony PrestonCorrespondent INovember 1, 2009

The recent string of injuries has caused many fans to declare that there are just too many UFC pay per views events, however, for the UFC more pay per views is more money. Think about it it is not just pay per view sales, but also ticket sales and name recognition for the fighters.

The first one is obvious at fifty bucks a pop and fourteen pay per view events in a year that is 700 dollars if one person buys every one, but with an average of lets say 400,000 buys per event that makes it 280 million dollars a year. That is a nice chunk of money and is why Dana White gets to drive ridiculously nice cars. Also it is not a bad pay off for the Fertitta brothers who put over 40 million in the first couple years they owned the UFC and barely saw a dime in return.

This leads us to ticket sales which is often referred to as the gate. If we say the average gate for a UFC event is 2 million dollars and 14 events a year that is 28 million dollars. While, 28 million dollars may seem small compared to the fact that pay per view buys are ten times that amount, the gate from an event can just about cover the costs that go into an event such as fighter salaries, paying the crew members , and setup and other costs associated with the venue. That makes the 280 million from pay per views pure profit.

Now think about the fighters that we see the main event and co-main event fights. These are all of the very well known fighters. These fighters are being used to draw in the viewers, but  the other spots on the card aren't used up without reason.

What about the other fighters on the main card or the fighters on the un-aired preliminary card that are shown when fights end early on the pay per view? Those fighters are not as well known but by watching them, fans get to know them and this builds the fighter's name recognition with the fans. This helps when fighters such as Dan Henderson or Rampage Jackson leave the UFC, because then there are several other fighters that the fans know who can fill the void.

A decrease in the number of pay per views would cause many exciting fighters with good fights to be stuck on several preliminary cards, rather than pay-per-view broadcasts. Casual fans would never get to appreciate these fighters, or even know their names.

Then, if the UFC suddenly had them in a co-main event to replace an injured fighter, people would not be interested because they would not know the fighter. Also, being on a pay per view card generally pays better than being on a card shown on Spike because the fight night bonuses are higher and the top draws get percentages of the pay per view money.

If the UFC cut the number of pay per views it would hurt the bottom line but also hurt the fighters. So in the case of UFC pay per views: More is more for the UFC and for the fighters.