The show that the UFC put on inside the Rose Garden in Portland, Oregon was one of the best overall cards the company has produced in quite some time. Despite the quality of the fights, the company “only” managed to garner 16,088 fans for a $1.92 million gate – numbers that president Dana White is none too pleased with.
“I’m my own worst critic, and I got a lot of [expletive] critics, believe me,” White stated at the UFC 102 post-fight press conference. “I’m a little disappointed that we missed the mark on this thing. I think as great as we did, we could have done better.”
My, how times have changed. Most MMA organizations would be doing cartwheels for pulling in a $1.9 million gate, but White and his UFC have made no bones about their desires to dominate professional sports and set untouchable records along the way.
“The people from Nike were here tonight” White stated. “All the big top-dogs from Nike were like, ‘You don’t come to a sporting event in Portland and see all these women here.’ Everybody’s telling me how successful this thing was and how great it was, but to me, I know personally we missed it and we could have done better.
“I’m pissed off that we’re not the No. 1 gate in the history of this place,” White said. “That bums me out because I think we could have done it had we dialed it in right. But we’re going a million miles an hour, jumping on all these things.
The night wasn’t a complete loss as Rose Garden officials told White their debut show ranked among the top five gates the venue had hosted. However, White feels they weren’t as prepared as they should have been, and left plenty of money on the table as a result.