The UFC is undoubtedly the largest and most successful mixed martial arts promotion currently operating. Helmed by Dana White and the Fertitta brothers, the promotion has helped to revolutionize the sport and, perhaps most importantly, continually gain measures of mainstream acceptance; though widespread ignorance about the sport of MMA still exists, the stigma surrounding the sport has changed drastically since the days when John McCain labeled the sport “human cockfighting.”
Having taken great efforts to grow the sport, the UFC have become the flagship MMA brand as a result. If you ask a smattering of the general population, the terms MMA and UFC are oftentimes seen as being synonymous. As a result of their place at the forefront of the sport, their absorption of major competitors and the gulf that now exists between the UFC and any of their competitors still standing, some have declared that the UFC is, or is at least dangerously close to becoming, a full-fledged monopoly.
UFC president Dana White spoke with USA Today recently and addressed those claims, also giving a brief glimpse at some of the promotion’s big plans for the future.
“People always say ‘monopoly.’ The people who say that don’t know enough about the sport,” said the brash UFC figurehead. “If you go state to state and called the athletic commission in every state where we’re sanctioned and ask them how many MMA events were held there this year and how many times did the UFC come, the answer is going to be once or zero. We’re not a monopoly. We’re just the best. We do what we do the best.”
With the heat coming down as a direct result of the UFC’s massive success, will the promotion cool its efforts at legalizing MMA in New York or to break into new foreign markets? Absolutely not, says White.
“We’re obviously working very hard on New York,” he said. “We’ve already started to travel around the world, from Australia to Abu Dhabi to Germany to the U.K. We will hold our first fight ever in Brazil this summer. We will have our first fight since we owned the company in Japan. We are going to (South) Korea. We’re working on deals in China and India.”