The UFC has had a strangle hold on the world of mixed martial arts over the past 15 years. Promotions such as Rings, PRIDE, Bodog Fight and The IFL have fallen by the wayside as the UFC has continued to brand themselves as the sports premier organization.
But domestic competition has been largely absent until now. Pro Elite (EliteXC) has been able to swing deals with Showtime and CBS to gain a window of opportunity to crack the market and Affliction has teamed up with HDNet, FoxSports, Oscar De La Hoya and Donald Trump to bring a wealth of resources to the table.
So when Affliction announced that it was going to “loan” heavyweight star Andrei Arlovski to EliteXC for their upcoming CBS show, shock waves rippled through the MMA world and certainly caught the attention of UFC brass. Though some wrote it off as a one fight deal, that may not be the case according to Affliction executive Micheal Cohen.
While stating that nothing was definitive, Cohen said that the two sides are discussing further co-promotes.
“Any additional co-promotes with these groups are not definitive and are in discussions at this moment,” Cohen told USA Today.
Cohen also confirmed that the companies most popular fighter, Fedor Emelianenko, will be headlining the organizations next card slated for Jan. 24; making it unlikely that he will be able to fight in Japan on NYE.