In an interview with John Morgan of “MMA Junkie” UFC President Dana White addressed the issue of Bellator and its continued growth and ascendency in the minds of MMA fans.
Of it, White commented:
“They’re never going to be as good as us. This is what we do 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Christmas, Easter, Let Christmas time come, Viacom shuts down from Dec. 3 to after the new year and then all the big holidays in between.”
Dana further remarked that the UFC believed in “this thing when nobody else did” and that includes Viacom, who, ironically enough, turned the promotion down when they approached the media conglomerate about developing The Ultimate Fighter TV Show.
In terms of where Viacom sits now with their SPIKE / Bellator promotion, White feels they’re just a “me too” organization and he’s not concerned, “Nobody’s ever going to outwork us or outhustle us. That’s just never going to happen. It’s impossible.”
White finalized with his long-term goal:
“I’m not just trying to beat Viacom MMA or any of these other guys. I want to beat the ****ing Rolling Stones. I want to beat Major League Baseball on Wednesday night if they’re going head-to-head with us in the timeslot. I want to beat the NFL someday. I want to beat everybody. I want to win.”
My guess is White will probably succeed, but (IMO) there are obstacles in his path.
First amongst those would be the PPV. It has to go or become a “much” less expensive buy. For my money, until the UFC is available and in the same manner as the other big 4 sports, it will never be on the same level.
Second, I’d say if there was a guy out there who has the patience and business acumen to test White’s ambitions its Bjorn Rebney.
Third, as SBV is not the WEC or Strikeforce, the UFC will not be able to kill off its competition via purchase. On this issue, the senior promotion will have to duke it out with its junior competitor in the Octagon of business.