T Nation

Is MMA Turning into WWE?


With all this hype for the Jones Evans fight, right after the hype for the Rampage fights do yo think MMA might be turning more to WWE wrestling or what?


The business model is certainly the same for the UFC and WWE. One difference though is of course one is staged and one is fucking real.

You have to promote your fights/PPV. Usually there is a good guy and there is a bad guy.

Big difference is that in the WWE these guys fight and or perform every night of the week with two live shows a week. While UFC youi have one ppv per month.

I also think the WWE is going after the younger crowd while UFC is a little older.


although the UFC hates to being compared to Pro Wrestling they are more connected than you think.

All that speedos, talking trash in the cage before matches, lol even Ben Rothwell came out to Raw Theme at UFC 135.

When BJ got in conflict with the UFC because of money and not being recognized like Matt Hughes after winning the WW belt one of the UFC executives demanded that the only solution would be that BJ went to the next UFC asked for Dana White forgiveness and left the belt in the middle of the octagon. BJ laughed and the idea and replied: "Who the fuck he think he is? Vince McMahon? is this the WWE?"

One of the biggest stars and PPV seller uses WWE antics and came from Pro Wrestling. Easy to guess who, huh?

UFC modus operandi is more about the show than who is the best fighter, it's about who can generate better cash-flow for the UFC, that's why you see 1 year guys at the top fighting for the belt then forgotten at sidelines the next(read Jon Fitch), fighters who have no more business at UFC but have a good fan-base like Wandeco or Dan Hardy.

And i see nothing wrong with it, PRIDE knew that what would sell tickets was huge fights with larger than life characters, there it was REALLY about the show and captivating the audience, there you could lose 3 fights but if you gave a big show you will be assured to get another contract for a BIG PAYROLL, the biggest sellers over there?

Bob Sapp, Ogawa and Yoshida and i bet they weren't who you were expecting right?

Bob Sapp became a multi-millionare because of his size, persona and japanese fascination with big black dudes. Was a super-star at several CM, movies and talk-shows. Heck! Even Giant Silva appeared at more japaneses talk-shows than let's say Mauricio Shogun.

Ogawa and Yoshida received more than 2 millions dollars each for their one match.

When BJ Penn left the UFC for K-1 he was offered around 175.500US$ for each fight, while the UFC refused to pay him Matt Hughes-like(around 100.000US$) and wanted to up his current contract to 25.000, 30.000 top. BJ asked for more and they replied: "Look Kid, you are gonna get more sponsors and more visibility." It's a mentality about: "Hey, we pay you less but you get to sell yourself more." That's why you see Shane Carwin a fighter who went to a title-shot and brutalize his opposition until there getting only 40.000US$.

In my opinion is better to be a Johny Hendricks style fighting several times on the undercard against lesser competition improving his pay increments by fight and getting used to the cage before going straight for the title-shot.

UFC is more concerned about incremental pays than the real value of the fighter, is that a bad thing? Maybe, but it's what keep their costs not as high as other events who can't seem to manage their accounting very well(Affliction flunked because of high fighter purses and not enough talent and not generating positive cash-flow even though they had Donald Trump backing it up.)

In sum, i lol everytime the UFC scoffs that it's not modeled after WWE, even though they work at the same PPV format.


I agree with everything 100000%.

WWE & UFC are the same show practically.

In fact UFC resembles more the WWE than it does boxing.


It just seems like that's a dangerous path to take, that might lead to the eventual predetermined outcome of fights.


UFC is a business. Their job is to expand, market, deliver fights, keep the fans happy, and put some cash in their pocket for doing so.

The UFC is like WWE because of Brock? Really? I don't think I've seen him climb on the cage and jump off. UFC doesn't have grand entrances for just this reason. To prevent people from comparing it to WWE.

And what would be wrong with some fireworks and grand entrances? Are you afraid you might be entertained?

"oh I watch the fights for entertainment, not the entrance."

Well if you watch the countdown, the weigh ins, the interviews, and anything else that is outside of the octagon... you enjoy the entertainment of the FIGHT GAME.
The actual fight is, of course, a huge part of it. But what part of a spectacular shows presses your buttons? The fact that the fighters deserve it? Maybe because you still think you're the mma fan in your state?

If you enjoy the fight, and only the fight, stop watching UFC and check out the amateur bracket having dozens of shows in your area (granted MMA is prevalent and legal in your state). You'll see hungry athletes swinging and slamming non stop for three 2 minute rounds.

Otherwise, there's no need to be scared of change. Let MMA grow, and not for nothing, you should help it grow.

It's fine as a paying customer/fan to demand more, but don't speculate non nonsensical shit.


There's a difference between growing and converting. Overall boxing has regained some respect but for a long time they had a major negative stigma because of the mob/king control and fixed fights. It's much easier to believe a david and goliath story when you haven't heard that a fight was fixed. Hype and entrance doesn't bother me, but if bogus beef between fighters to create drama becomes the norm you start to wonder what else is made up.
I haven't come to any conclusions I'm just saying



Nobody argued about that.

lol, you just showed you haven't read anything on my post, nobody said UFC is like WWE because of Brock, he is only a part of it.

nobody is against fireworks and the show part, which comparing UFC with PRIDE pretty much shows they lack on it. The argument is that UFC insists to not be comparated with WWE when it's much closer to WWE than lets say boxing.

Nobody is speculating nonsensical shit, everything written there is the reality and if you don't agree you are seriously delusional.


this already happened when lesnar lost in overly theatrical fashion to the "first mexican with a legitimate chance at the heavy weight title" on the first ever 100% Spanish ufc broadcast


First I agree with kaiser.

Second, I would like to point out that both UFC and the WWE are promotion companies that seek to monopolize the sport/product by being the biggest name on the block and buying/blacklisting talent and buying out their competition. This is not at all similar to the multiple governing bodies/multiple promotions entity that is pro boxing.

The fact UFC is somethimes used as a synonym for MMA by fans and Pro-Wrestling=WWE(or WWF for the older) in common vernacular is evidence of the similar business models/practices of both promotions.


Robert A


I would love more information regarding the anti-trust laws and FEDS watch over the UFC and how it will unfold.


Since we are all fight fans sometimes we don't look at the business side of any combat sport whether it be real or fake. I have to remind myself of this too. At one time the UFC was a failing business. Now that it's gone mainstream money will always be number one. UFC, WWE, and Boxing will hype a PPV event to bring in the money. UFC has a reality show the Ultimate Fighter. Boxing has 24/7 on HBO. I think WWE still has a show called Tough Enough.

Whatever will draw in the fans to keep the business going is what they'll do. From a fighter's point of view it's the same thing. How long can a fighter continue in their sport? What's the average career in years? You get in the cage, ring, etc. and you stand toe to toe with another dude and both of you deliver and take damage. How many years can you keep that up? What's the cost for you? Then when your career is over what do you do now. Bottom line it's that money. It is what it is.


I am not an attorney and I do not play one on TV. I am not sure there are any anti-trust laws that can challenge any sports and or promotion.

Look at the NFL they completely own the world when it comes to the game of football. These bastards will sure you even if your just selling shirts with a team logo on it.

The UFC has bought any legitimate competition and so has the WWE. There is no stopping that ever!


Anti-trust laws rarely get enforced. Look at the "merger" between Comcast and MSNBC, or AT&T (which when it was broken up before was probably the last time anti-trust laws were actually enforced in this country) wanting to merge with T-Mobile for recent examples. It's unlikely that a sporting promotion such as the UFC would garner much attention and be made an example of.

On the one hand as a fan this could be looked at as positive, since (much like the NFL, MLB, NBA, or NHL) having only one "league" pretty much ensures that all of the best talent/prospects wind up facing each other and we truly get to see who is king of the mountain.

On the other hand, the lack of legitimate competition means that the UFC can pretty much treat/pay it's athletes however it wants and they really don't have many alternative places to turn. This kind of sucks for the fighters.

I suppose the UFC fighters could potentially form a "fighters' union" like is present in the other major sports and use their collective presence/threat of striking to leverage a better deal for themselves, but I'd wager that the UFC probably puts provisions into their contracts which prohibits them from collective bargaining practices. That and most fighters don't make enough money that they'd be able to hold out like athletes in the other major sports.