As many MMA fans are already well aware, this past week was a massive step forward towards the UFC’s ultimate goal of mainstream acceptance and popularity, as they signed an exclusive network television deal with Fox Television worth approximately $100 million per year over the next several years. That’s a lot of cheese.
“Familiarity with evil breeds not contempt, but acceptance.”—Roy Hattersley
The deal will include four live events per year, along with the usual Spike programming of The Ultimate Fighter reality show—a show by the way, that has steadily dropped in ratings ever since it first appeared back in 2005. In fact, as a testament to its own self-imploding demise, the most recent show starring the ultra-popular superstar, Brock Lesnar and FORMER Black House fighter, Junior dos Santos, resulted in the worst ratings ever recorded in the six year history of the show, which is quite surprising considering that in 2010, Brock Lesnar was the number one pay-per-view draw out of any fighter currently employed under contract by the UFC.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering—according to the PPV revenues earned by all major UFC events in 2010, Black House Senior Representative and long-time “loyal” friend to Will Ribeiro, Rodrigo Nogueira (aka “Big Nog”) was DEAD LAST in ratings, and apparently in fan interest as well.
But not to worry TUF fans—I think I read somewhere that the UFC was planning on making big, BIG changes to the production values of the show, now that they’re going to be aired on Fox...you know...stuff like the visuals and music during the introduction.
“Well...whoop-de-doo.”—Garfield the Cat
Call it a hunch, but somehow I doubt that that’ll make much of a difference. Sure there will be that initial Spike in ratings (yes...pun intended) because everyone is going to want to check it out—at first—but then how long until it becomes the same old boring show again? I say, it’ll flop by the end of the next season.
Oh and did I forget to mention that the UFC (TUF) won’t even be aired on the standard Fox channel that brought us classic shows such as Married with Children and the Simpsons? Apparently the UFC will only be aired on FX and Fuel and Fox Sports Deportes. What?! Personally, I have no idea what those channels are, but I do know two things: One—I absolutely refuse to pay extra money on my already ridiculously stupid cable bill, and two—I will definitely stop watching the UFC as a result.
In an article that I just read by Yahoo! Sports journalist, Kevin Iole, I couldn’t help but to think that this was either a man who had been drinking way too much of the UFC Kool-Aid over the years that he has now become so blinded by his own need to suck-up for fear of losing his press credentials, or he genuinely has his nose shoved so far up the UFC’s ass, that he can’t see the truth for what it really is. Either way...I pity him.
“Fans will benefit by the increase of exposure for the sport.”
Really? I’m sorry, but as a fan, I’m already quite keenly aware that this sport (fight entertainment) exists. Why on earth would it be of any benefit to me as a fan, if the sport suddenly had increased exposure or not? Am I a shareholder in Zuffa? Will the UFC’s new-found financial success somehow impact my life in more positive way? No, no and no.
“When asking for help, appeal to people’s self-interest. Never to their mercy or gratitude. If you need to turn to an ally for help, do not bother to remind him of your past assistance and good deeds. He will find a way to ignore you. Instead, uncover something in your request, or in your alliance with him, that will benefit him, and emphasize it out of all proportion. He will respond enthusiastically when he sees something to be gained for himself.”—The 48 Laws of Power (Law #13)
Kiss a little more UFC ass, why don’t you, Kevin?
“Fox is a bigger stage than Spike [and] Versus.”
Sure it is, but so what? Again, I’m not going to PAY MORE MONEY just for the “privilege” of watching a sport that oddly enough swears up and down that it’s “growing,” and yet anyone that I talk to keeps expressing concerns over how fan interest is absolutely fading. And that’s because the UFC has single-handedly turned what was once a cool, new and interesting exhibition event, into a mainstream FAD that will eventually exhaust itself out and become about as watchable as WWE wrestling. Which for me...is not at all.
“The UFC will rake in nearly $750 million over the seven-year lifetime of the exclusive deal it signed with Fox, which should lead to an increase in fighter pay.”
Sorry, but I just don’t see the connection.
Here’s what I did—I added up all of the PPV purchases for the entire year of 2010 (9,815,000), spanning UFC events 108 through 124. I then divided the total PPV’s by the number of events (16) to find the average number of buys (613,437). I then multiplied the total by four (2,453,750), which at the very least, should be equivalent to the four deals that the UFC has now signed with Fox. Are you following me so far? Do you need me to slow down so that you can reload on your Ritalin?
Now where my math gets a little bit tricky is in differentiating between the household buys and the business licenses. The difference is that the household buys are approximately $50 per household, and businesses are forced to pay considerably more—anywhere from hundreds to thousands from what I understand. So for arguments sake, I multiplied the collective total by $50 to keep it at the minimum possible amount (knowing of course that it would be much more) and I came up with a grand total income of $122,687,000. That’s about $22 million dollars more than the Fox deal.
My point is this...if the UFC were so generous towards their athletes, and were already planning on paying their fighters more money, then what has stopped them from already doing so up until now? There would have been absolutely nothing that should have prevented them from already doing so. In fact, the UFC makes so much money every year, that the owners (Dana White for example) are already multi-mega-millionaires, and the fighters themselves are currently getting paid very little compared to the actual revenues that are being brought in. But what are the fighters going to do—complain about it? Go someplace else? Frankly, it’s an absolute disgrace the way that the fighters are treated, and I see no reason whatsoever why the UFC would suddenly become “ungreedy” towards the fighters, who are the ones responsible for building fan interest while their employer continues to exploit them.
Exploit them? Who said anything about the fighters being exploited?
“Fox has been known for the great job it does cross-promoting its programming during sports broadcasts, and it would be no shock to see UFC fighters appearing on popular Fox shows such as American Idol.”
American Idol??!! LMAO!!! What’s next? Dancing with the Stars?? Oh wait...nevermind...
Mike Roberts, COO of MMA Inc. (never heard of him) also stated in Iole’s article, “The endorsement opportunities and sponsorship money will go up for most of the fighters. Right away it’s not going to be a huge difference, but long-term, it’s going to be huge.”
No way! Maybe for a small handful of “personalities,” but for the average fighters with zero to less-than-zero job security, it won’t make any difference at all. Guys like Chael Sonnen will become mega-stars earning massive million dollar paycheques, just for being a jackass, and the other vast majority of athletes will continue to struggle for their own existence. Don’t believe me? That’s okay—it’s not your fault...
“Most people are not aware of how the human mind can be manipulated, controlled and conditioned without their knowledge. When we use the term ‘brainwashing,’ it's exactly that. Personal values, morals, ideas, or beliefs, are actually removed from our minds and replaced with new ones, and we then think that they were there all along.
“In the history of brainwashing, there has never been one victim who knew that he or she was being reprogrammed or brainwashed—not a single one! Pioneered by the various religions, this has become so common that it is usually taken for granted, yet what it amounts to is psychological slavery.
“Ironically, the educational systems do not educate people. They condition them all as a part of the general ‘productivity’ agenda, preparing people for a life as a ‘worker.’ Ones identity is pretty well formed by the age of seven. As well, a person’s mental capacity, and what they are fed (things they are exposed to in their mind) is what determines how they think.
“Fortunately, most people are gullible followers; never analyzing anything. Just accepting whatever is thrown their way as fact, and so the population becomes semi-complacent, and reacts only to issues that affect them personally. Meanwhile, special interest groups with hidden agendas manipulate the media, the education system, and the market place, provided that it doesn’t affect productivity, which means ‘keeping the wealthy in power,’ and keeping the everyday citizen as a simple slave.
“It’s surprising just how easy it is to actually condition people. All you need are three things and anyone will become your slave! First, you need isolation, then dependency, and then finally, your doctrine. Then they are yours to shape and mold into whatever you want them to be.
“It’s simple mind control and brainwashing—exactly the same techniques used by the church, state, military, companies, and various groups or professions to get others to comply with the required rules. When someone falls through the cracks and has not been effectively conditioned, we call them anti-social, outsiders, misfits, and similar names, and they soon realize that they must pretend to think that way in order to survive. And with better technology, mind control has improved thousands of times over the last five decades until you can make a person believe anything you want them to believe in as little as 10 days.”—Dr. John Williams
“Needless to say, at the ripened old age of 70-years old, I have been around martial arts for a very long time—63 years to be exact. And like I have said many times before, Mixed Martial Arts is all about feeding inflated egos, making exorbitant amounts of money, and getting as much media and fan attention as possible.
“Personally, I like MMA, but unfortunately, the industry for the most part treats its fighters like worthless pieces of meat. If they are winning, everyone treats the fighters like heroes, but since that is always short lived, eventually their luck runs out and when it does, they are tossed aside like used tampons and flushed down the toilet. What happened to Will Ribeiro is a drastic example, but is typical of how it generally goes in MMA. The fans especially can be very fickle.
“Trainers will attempt to win the fighters over by wining and dining them, just for the privilege of being able to walk down to the cage with them, or to get their names highlighted in the media. It’s all about becoming someone special. It’s definitely all about the ego.
“The average time that a professional fighter spends on the top is around three years (a few exceptions last longer). Then, once they have served their purpose, the fighters are immediately discarded. It’s like nobody gives a rat’s ass about them after that, and their fall from grace is always fast and painful.
“I am a traditional martial artist. I began my training in 1947, long before any of these guys were even born. I saw the arts evolve from what was once a very small, private sanctuary for a select few individuals, into a complete joke. When the Gracies came out with their version of judo groundwork and called it Brazilian Jui-Jitsu, and began their ‘challenge’ matches, I saw the handwriting on the wall. I knew that money would ruin what they were trying to present, and after a few years, you had exactly what Taekwondo brought to the martial arts scene—books, tapes, and quickly everyone was a BJJ champion or 'Professor,' and hundreds of Brazilians relocated and fleeced the gullible out of a lot of money (that’s how Taekwondo ruined the arts in the 80's).
“And today, Dana White took over the sport with the UFC and has now created a monopoly, which will kill the sport of MMA in less than a few short years.
“The funny thing about MMA is that you could teach another person how to poke eyes, grab nuts, burst eardrums, grab throats, pull hair, pinch pressure points, etc., and they will give any MMA fighter major fits. So aside from these fighting principles, what the traditional arts did was, they made the aspects of good citizenship an integral part of the studies by stressing human tenets such as, respect, honour, loyalty, and good character—things that take a lifetime to master, which is why people can have a place of family in the arts well into their senior lives.
“When I began to train with my first real 'Master,' he immediately made me prove myself as being a trusted friend (not student, but friend), and once that was established, he said, 'I’m going to teach you how to kill another person.' I told him that I didn't want to kill anyone, but he insisted that at first, in order to be his student, I would have to learn very effective killing techniques, or forget the whole thing. So, for roughly two years, all I practiced were my killing techniques. I learned the positions of all vital organs, veins, arteries, and the weaknesses of the human body. I also learned techniques designed to exploit these weaknesses and to kill another person quickly and effectively.
“That is the basis of the system that I currently teach, and yet, all of the things that my Master had taught me about killing have never been passed on to any of my students, with the exception of my sons.
“The philosophy of any traditional martial arts system is about helping others to live a better life by treating them like members of your own family. But to do this requires character, and to be a teacher means that one has to learn how to easily hurt (or even kill) another person in order to test their character, because with this ability, one is tested often, and choices must be made. Only good character can control them.
“I was a police officer. I worked alone with no backup at all, and guys challenged me routinely. There were many occasions when if I wanted to, I could have snapped a person's neck like a twig and got away with it. But I didn't. Never once did I ever use excessive force, because my training developed my respect for human life and the rights of others. That’s what is lacking in the MMA world today. It is not there in Brazilian Jui-Jitsu, or in Gracie Jui-Jitsu, or in the hundreds of training facilities, because the ‘coaches’ are not true martial artists. They merely provide the necessary vehicles for MMA fans to be able to live out their fantasies through the ‘celebrity fighters’ that are all driven by the need to be accepted.
“The book, Desolate Warrior is a clear example of that!”
[James Ryan pulls out his gun and points it directly in your face]
“Put down the Kool-Aid!! I repeat...put down the Kool-Aid and step away from your television.”
“Television to brainwash us all and Internet to eliminate any last resistance.”—Paul Carvel
Oh and in case you missed it, check out what Dana White’s own mother had to say about him in her recently self-published book entitled; Dana White, King of MMA:
“There are many articles written about Dana, where he came from, and the hard life he had growing up. I have heard him referred to as a Southie tuff, but that is not who Dana is and does not accurately reflect the life he has led. It is hard for me to hear the many myths about Dana, and the way he is portrayed to the public. It is difficult for me to see how, as the popularity of the UFC evolved, the person I once knew changed into someone who is egotistical, self-centered, arrogant, and cruel. I liken Dana’s transformation to that of Precious in Lord of the Rings. Just as the ring of power changed that fictional character, Dana’s power and wealth have changed him into someone I do not recognize.
Dana’s family and friends were always there to help and support him no matter what the circumstances. As Dana’s success grew and the circumstances of life changed for him, he did not do the same for them. Dana went from being a true friend, a good son, and a truly nice person to being a vindictive tyrant who lacks any feelings for how he treats others. It is hard to say if what changed him so utterly was the extreme amount of money he came into so quickly, the influence of those around him, or how suddenly he could make or break so many people. Power can create ugly beasts. In meetings that were not going Dana’s way, he has told me, he would stand up at the conference table, (creating a psychological advantage), holler, and swear at individuals he was dealing with. He would tell them, “I’ll bury you!” Dana has a very short fuse and it does not take a whole lot to set him off on a totally out-of-control tirade. These days he always gets what he wants, no matter what it takes to get it. His employees will echo that same powerful statement: he will do whatever it takes to get what he wants.
A good deal of Dana’s power obviously comes from the extraordinary amount of money he has acquired in the last few years. When you have that much money, everyone wants to be your friend, your pal, your buddy, a member of your entourage. True friends are the ones that were there before the houses, cars, planes, fancy trips, and extravagant parties. True friends are the ones who would share a peanut butter sandwich with you when your refrigerator was empty and so were your pockets.
As early as when the UFC had just begun to turn around and the company was making a profit, I could see changes in Dana that bothered me. I would always tell him, “Keep your feet on the ground. Remember who you are and where you came from. Don’t let your head get so big you can’t fit through a doorway.”
He always responded the same way: “You do not have to ever worry about that.”
These negative changes in Dana became more and more noticeable. I kept hoping Dana would recognize that he was becoming a different person, that there seemed to be a correlation between his increasing wealth and his increasing unkindness to those around him. I thought he would take a step back and look at what it was he was doing to friends and family. As his mom, if anyone could or should say something, I felt it would be me. Indeed, most people take advice from their moms as constructive, at least as well intended. In an e-mail, I told my son that I wanted my old Dana back. I felt like aliens had abducted my Dana and replaced him with this other person I really did not know. I assumed he would at least think about what I had said and about what it was, he was doing, but his response was the furthest thing from stepping back and thinking about what I had just told him.
Dana immediately e-mailed me back: “Who the fuck do you think you are, talking to me like that? No one talks to me that way.”
Of course, after the initial shock faded, I shot back, “I am your mother, that is who I am, and don’t you ever forget that. I am not one of your fighters or employees!” That was exactly my point in my initial email to him, that he was treating people as if they were less than deserving of common courtesy and respect.
His next response was not what I had expected either. It was a good thing for him I was on the east coast and he was in Las Vegas. I was so angered by his replies. My blood pressure had to be at stroke level. We did not speak for an extended period after that. This was the upshot of the changes in my son, and it seems to me partly due to a mythology that grew up around him and that he did nothing to correct. In fact, he seems to have helped spread these tales. It is time to set the record straight about who Dana White was and who he has become.
Article after article spreads a myth of the early life of Dana White, how as a child he endured without his mother or father around, how he had no male figures in his life. In this fictional version of his life, Dana was a child left on his own in the mean streets of South Boston and Las Vegas. This picture of his youth is certainly something that makes for good reading but it is a far cry from the truth. The truth is Dana lived a charmed life growing up in a family full of uncles, aunts, cousins, and grandparents who were always around, who were all very close and spent holidays and vacations together. Dana attended private school in Las Vegas, and from kindergarten until he graduated high school, I always stayed on top of what was going on with his academics. When he was faltering or having trouble in school, I immediately took steps to address the problems. While living in Las Vegas, his grandmother, a retired teacher, would go to his school and sit in on his class to see why he was having problems when his grades were poor.
After Dana was born, we spent a year living in a small, rural town in Connecticut. We spent another year in a small beach community in Florida, and a year and a half living in a bedroom community in Connecticut and then seven years living in a quaint little town in rural western Massachusetts. Even after moving to Las Vegas, Dana spent his summers in upstate Maine. Dana never had a job or worked while he lived at home, and he did very little in the way of chores at home. Even after moving out on his own, he frequently came to me for help and support. So much for the boy-raising-himself-in-the-streets myth.
Dana was born three weeks after my projected due date, weighed six pounds, nine ounces, and was nineteen inches long. He was thin with peeling skin from being overdue. He was not a pretty baby when he was born, but skinny and scraggly looking. Dana wasn’t one of those babies with the chubby thighs but instead with skinny, little chicken legs.
Rosemary’s Baby came out in 1968. The movie starred Mia Farrow as a young woman who, by the end of the movie, has Satan’s child. Dana was born in 1969, shortly after this movie came out. One afternoon, when the nurses brought Dana to me for his feeding, thoughts of this movie came back me. I remembered how Mia Farrow was so sick through her pregnancy in the movie, just like I was. This was the first time Dana had opened his eyes while he was with me. When I looked into his eyes, I was taken aback by how black his eyes were. I had never seen anyone with eyes so black, especially a baby. That realization is etched in my mind as if I had stared into those eyes for the first time only yesterday. My family ancestry is Irish, and so we all have blue or green eyes. I could not tell where Dana’s pupils ended and where the color of the iris should have started. The effect was chilling, and I had the feeling of looking into soulless eyes. The experience was truly upsetting and worried me as to who, or what, he would grow up to be.”
A few years ago, Dana had hired someone to write about him and this person called to ask me questions about Dana and what he was like growing up. Somewhere in the conversation, he asked me how I felt about Dana being an atheist. I had no idea at the time that Dana was claiming he did not believe there was a God. I responded, “Dana was raised Catholic. He was an altar boy. He went to Catholic school and was married in the Catholic Church and all his children were baptized in the church.” Somewhat confused by the news I asked, “When did Dana make this decision?”
Before the writer could answer, I thought about Dana’s behavior these days and told the writer, “Oh, wait. I can understand why he doesn’t believe in God anymore. It’s because these days he thinks he’s God.” The writer went back to Dana and told Dana that I had made those comments to him. I am told Dana was furious. I found his reaction quite amusing.
Recently, I was in the hospital and very sick, knocking-on-heaven’s-door sick. Dana came to see me, and one of the first things he asks me is whether I actually made that comment to the writer about him thinking he was God. I told him I did and thought it was witty for what the writer had asked. I don’t think Dana thought so. He has no sense of humor regarding himself anymore, (I am King, hear me roar).
I ask you...does this really sound like a guy who puts the best interests of the fans and the athletes above his own?
MMA is full of so many posers, it really shouldn’t come as that much of a shock to anyone to learn that our trusted leader is in fact the biggest one of them all.
Oh and Dana, if you’re reading this...you can stick your press credentials up your ass. I’m not interested.
Next Article: Lie Alert: Dana White and Ed Soares Agreed to Help Will Ribeiro to Become a Judge at UFC 134