UFC's Global Domination
The Ufc started its early beginnings in 1993 in America,inspired by vale tudo competitions in Brazil,it showed off fighters of different fighting backgrounds competing against each other in a cage.The competitions showed off different techniques including,wrestling, boxing, jiu jitsu, kickboxing, and Maui Thai kickboxing,this lead to a backlash from various powers that be stating that it was nothing more than human cockfighting,based upon the fact that the bouts were bare knuckle and there were no weight limits etc,so sometimes you would see a small fighter up against someone of far superior size and weight.The ufc over a period of time underwent reform and had rules and regulations put in place including a strict series of weight classes,the fighters also has to wear 4oz gloves and there were rules put in place regarding striking downed opponents etc.When one of the first events to be televised came along they had the cage designed and it was renamed an octagon.The show which featured an eight man elimination was meant to be a one off show but pulled in so many pay per view figures that they decided to do another with nobody realising that they were in fact creating a sport.
The ufc was brought as a company by casino owners and brothers Frank and Lorenzo Fertita,and along with ex boxing manager Dana White they took over the company in 2001.With the Fertitas ties with various athletic commissions the ufc was sanctioned in Nevada shortly after being brought and returned to pay per view television with ufc 33.
After releasing dvd's and with much larger attendances at world famous venues such as trump plaza and the mgm grand pay per view levels slowly increased to a point where they were getting 150,000 buys,this however was all to change with the concept of the ultimate fighter reality show...
The Ultimate Fighter
When the Fertita's owned casinos they had done a reality show based around them and decided that was what the ufc needed to boost flagging ratings and bring in some much needed publicity.Each and every single tv executive they pitched the idea to turned it down until they went to spike tv and offered to pay for the broadcasting costs themselves.spike launched The Ultimate Fighter in January 2005 and featured light heavyweight greats Chuck Liddell and Randy Couture.It was a huge success and the finale between Forrest Griffin and Stephan Bonner was watched by an incredible 4,000,000 people,The second series was signed up by spike executives while the final was being played out.Spike also signed the fight night events which are there to help up and coming fighters get noticed.
The sports continued poularity was helped along by interest from various websites and from interest in some of sport and boxings finest authority figures.In 2006 Zuffa brought WEC (world Extreme Cagefighting) and in 2007 zuffa also brought Pride the hugely popular Japanese cage fighting organisation,As soon as that happened some of the pride fighters who were highly popular came to the ufc and started putting on huge wars,this increased peoples interest further.Several of the ufc's biggest stars were featured on mainstream magazines as well in 2007.
The ufc is currently being broadcast in 33 countries worldwide and is continuing to grow as it looks to dominate world sport,it has featured live events in the Usa,Britain,Canada,Germany,Australia and soon it will feature for the first time in the middle east in its first open air event.The ufc is growing and expanding and its going to be fun watching it.
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