It's strange (it's actually not strange, they're a bunch of fucking hacks) how the MMA media hasn't managed to wrap its head around how utterly devastating this deal is. It's a disaster for fans, fighters, ESPN (yep, there's no way they recoup their money on this) and the future of the sport. It's a win only for WME. MMA is now a product that exists entirely to move streaming subscriptions. But that's only half the problem - it is actually run by people who don't need to move those subscriptions themselves because they've already been paid. That's a terrible combination. The UFC no longer has any incentive to take any risks or give a shit about the quality of its content. Falling viewership is ESPN's problem, not theirs. Cards are only going to get worse. Fighters are going to have to adjust to a world where they have even less power and there will be a lot of inactivity because of it. This is what the UFC has always wanted. It never wanted stars, it has just tolerated them at times. It wants to promote its own brand above all else and keep its fighters completely powerless. This is the business model they learned from Vince McMahon and the WWE. It now has the TV/PPV deal in place to ensure it can fully realize this vision. And the cards they put out are going to get fucking awful.