If there’s been any doubt as to how huge UFC 196 would be, for some baffling reason, well, those questions shouldn’t remain…
Following last weekend’s UFC 196 card, Dana White is reporting that the event broke pay-per-view records for the company. The UFC President recently appeared on ESPN’s Max & Marcellus show, and during the segment he reported that the card moved 1.5 million PPV buys.
White did so while discussing the narrative / theory that the UFC has trouble creating new, bankable stars (quote via Bloody Elbow.com):
“People have been telling me ‘what are you going to do when Chuck Liddell retires?’ then ‘what are you going to do when GSP is gone?’ There is always new great fighters coming down the pipeline,” White said. “In this sport, we put the best against the best, or sometimes we do crazy stuff like on Saturday night, where Conor McGregor says ‘I want to fight Nate Diaz. I’ll fight him at 170 [pounds].’
“These are things that capture people’s imaginations. That is why the thing does 1.5 million PPV buys. That is because it captures the imaginations of fight fans.”
It’s been reported over the years that UFC 100 sold 1.6 million PPV buys, but White did say in the aforementioned interview that UFC 196 was “the biggest PPV we ever did”. So that’s very interesting to hear.
As you know, the card saw Conor McGregor’s electrifying, undefeated UFC run come to an end, as he was submitted by Stockton star, Nate Diaz. Holly Holm, fresh off her stunning, KO win over Ronda Rousey, lost the bantamweight title via submission to Miesha Tate. Those were both, highly anticipated fights, particularly the McGregor – Diaz scrap.
Now, of course, it will be interesting to see how McGregor’s next fight does in terms of sales. It might not set a new record, but it will big. Make no mistake about that.