John McCarthy: The greatest thing that the UFC had was Lorenzo Fertitta

Discussion in 'Cageside - MMA Discussion' started by Chad Wagner, May 18, 2018.

  1. Chad Wagner

    Chad Wagner Kelowna Rollerblading Krew
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    During his recent guesting on the JRE MMA Show podcast, veteran referee turned Bellator commentator John McCarthy spoke with Joe Rogan about the differences between the two eras of management in the UFC. And as the man who has been there since the early days even before Zuffa and took over, “Big John” pointed to one man as the key figure in the UFC’s rise to mainstream recognition.

    “The greatest thing that the UFC had was Lorenzo Fertitta,” McCarthy said. “I’m just being honest. Dana White was fantastic for the UFC as far as his work effort and the amount of work he put into it and non-stop just going after deals, trying to make things happen.”

    “He was the workhorse for it, but Lorenzo is the brains behind it. And the loss of him is great. You’ve already seen things.”

    The UFC’s ratings as of late have not met expectations, to say the least. UFC 224’s preliminary card that took place on Saturday night in Brazil drew an average of 574,000, which is said to be the lowest PPV prelims broadcast of 2018.

    As Rogan pointed out the weekly events that the UFC holds as one of the possible reasons, McCarthy could not agree more.

    “(Having too many events) is part of the problem,” McCarthy said. “For a while there, they were almost competing against themselves with pay-per-views. You had two pay-per-views in a month, and you went and said ‘I’ll buy that one, I’m not gonna buy that one.’”

    “You can’t be in business against yourself.”

    WME-IMG bought the UFC from the Fertittas in July 2017 for $4 billion.

    John McCarthy: The greatest thing that the UFC had was Lorenzo Fertitta
     
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  2. Rambo John J

    Rambo John J Smesher of Dream
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    John stated that Dana was a hard working puppet

    was nice to hear what we all knew....That Lorenzo was making every single decision
     
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  3. FrankieNYC

    FrankieNYC "My balls was hot!"

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    The difference is Lorenzo took UFC personally.
    WME treats it as a business investment

    It is like the Mom & Pop store that sells to a corporation, it loses its personality.

    Before the sale, I saw hundreds of post on SD saying "I wish UFC would be run like a business" (instead of the way Lorenzo ran it)
    I said at the sale "You got your wish"

    I also think fighters liked having a person in charge instead of Ari/Patrick reporting back to shareholders/investors.
    The day of one guy making a personal decision is almost completely gone.
    Now everything is checked/balanced

    TLDR: Lorenzo can make a short term decision that cost him money, because he wanted to. WME has to answer to some very powerful people why.
     
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  4. FrankieNYC

    FrankieNYC "My balls was hot!"

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    Interesting timing to see this on Meltzers board


    [​IMG]
     
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  5. RaginCajun

    RaginCajun TMMAC Potentate

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    [​IMG]
     
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  6. tang

    tang Khabib vs Nate, make it happen

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  7. Wild

    Wild TMMAC's Most Handsome Admin
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    Lorenza is a savvy dude. Definitely a loss when he left.
     
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  8. Chromium

    Chromium Well-Known Member

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    I agree Lorenzo was probably their best asset in hindsight, but gotta be fair here: he was also the driving force behind the Reebok deal. The dude wasn't exactly perfect.
     
  9. Chromium

    Chromium Well-Known Member

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    In retrospect it almost seems like it was just a lucky break that the boom era UFC got as many good people together as they did.

    -Lorenzo as the savvy strategist and financier (Frank also contributed 40%)
    -Dana White as the promoter, low-spin media man, and dealmaker. Remember when he used to give hundreds of tickets away and most fans really liked him?
    -Joe Silva as the ultra-disciplined matchmaker and visionary, balancing sport and spectacle as reasonably as anyone could expect
    -Sean Shelby as Silva's promising protege and partner (I did not mean for that to be alliterative and fuck you thesaurus.com for not helping me out here)
    -Marc Ratner as the lobbyist who helped get the sport legitimized across the U.S. and Canada
    -Burt Watson the veteran event coordinator from boxing who made everything run like a well-oiled machine

    We didn't know how good we had it. It makes me a little angry how they overcame the odds and came so far in ten years and then tripped over backwards.
     
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  10. aghof

    aghof an person

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    he was working on the exit strategy with that one
     
  11. Kneeblock

    Kneeblock Sapere Aude

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    That papers over a few things. First, Frank and Lorenzo devalued the UFC by blocking regulation in Nevada then bought it at fire sale prices. On the strength of New Jersey legalizing, SEG was already starting to hold profitable events, but the Vegas defeat made their creditors and investors panic.

    Second, Dana for a time became the product and the repercussions of that decision are still being felt with the UFC getting such a high valuation at sale while so little of their overall revenue goes to fighters.

    Joe Silva had many winners, but many lemons and had been around in the late SEG era as well. He basically built off of John Peretti's work and added a few pieces in the early going. Not to say he didn't build up the roster well. Credit where it's due, but he was also pretty hated by many fighters, managers and trainers for his disposition and his undercutting.

    Sean Shelby wasn't so much a protege. He was matchmaking with WEC and putting on some of the best cards in MMA history, still to this day. He and Reed Hartis worked to develop a whole stable of lighter weight talent that basically built the UFC's 155 and under divisions.

    Ratner came on after most of the big fish in the US were done in terms of regulation. He did a creditable job building markets and financing relationships overseas with his regulatory work, but most of them still have yet to pay off at least in part because Zuffa stubbornly eschewed copromotion.

    Burt I'll give you. He was the best.
     
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  12. Chromium

    Chromium Well-Known Member

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    I'm aware that Silva pre-dates Zuffa, and that Shelby was the WEC matchmaker (and later the Zuffa-force matchmaker too. I also am not trying to excuse how badly they screwed the fighters and I think I've posted on that about 5 million times already, including how it's not even in their own best interests to do so, and hasn't been for a long time.

    Dana being as big a star as anyone wasn't the worst thing at one point. He had a decent grasp of face/heel-type promotion, and did the everyman schtick very well, until his pathological lying caught up with him. There was a time when most fans seemed to like the guy, although maybe part of it was he gave away so many tickets. So I think his legacy has a lot of positives.

    Silva may have had some "lemons" in his matchmaking, but so would anyone with his job per the law of averages. I just think he did an excellent job at hedging bets and balancing sport and spectacle in a way where fighters always had a decent chance to earn their way to a title shot on merit, while still encouraging action, and making plenty of spectacular huge fights without simply blowing the matchmaking load the way WME has. In the admittedly narrow field of combat sports matchmaking, I can't think of anyone who's done a better job.

    Fair enough on Ratner.
     
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  13. Hauler

    Hauler Unknown Member

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    This has been my complaint for the last few years.

    I can't keep up with all the events anymore. Every time you blink there's another PPV or a Fight Night. I think they'd be better served if they had a rigid schedule where the 1st Saturday of every month was a PPV, and maybe the 3rd Friday of every month was a free Fight Night. Something like that.

    They have way too many events, and now with Bellator putting on some great fights it makes it that much more crowded.

    We just had the Nunes/Pennington fight; then a fight night this past Friday; this Sunday is the Thompson/Till fight; June 1 is Rivera/Moreas; June 9 is UFC 225. There's a Ballator event this weekend. If I watched all of those events my wife would kill me. But if the events took place every other week on a set schedule, I could plan for it. Just like an NFL Sunday.
     
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  14. Ted Williams' head

    Ted Williams' head It's freezing in here!

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    Haters gonna hate but the Fertitas owned a business that was losing money and chose to sink more and more of their own cash into it.

    Fortune favours the bold, baby.
     
  15. The Sound of Violence

    The Sound of Violence Host of a podcast about mma podcasts

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    Another fun note from that podcast: John explained that Campbell McLaren isn't a co creator of the UFC he's just the dude who sold a ppv company on airing it. Been shouting this on message boards forever dude drives me fucking nuts.
     
  16. Chad Wagner

    Chad Wagner Kelowna Rollerblading Krew
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    I've never heard this before, interesting.
     
  17. The Sound of Violence

    The Sound of Violence Host of a podcast about mma podcasts

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    You're not the only one I'm always amazed more people don't know about it Rogan and John discuss it at the beginning of the episode. The only person who thinks that Campbell is a co creator is Campbell and he's happy to mention it every time he gets a chance.

    Time stamped:


    "He comes up with, ya know, 'I'm the co-creator of the UFC'...let me just ask one question, if you're the co creator how come you never owned one bit of it? Doesn't make sense does it?

    ...he did things and I will absolutely give him credit for what he did because he was the reason that it actually made it to ppv..."
     
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  18. Ryann Von Doom

    Ryann Von Doom The Man

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    Hedid that for the sale. It was calculated.
     
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  19. Chromium

    Chromium Well-Known Member

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    The premise of this thread tho, or at least John McCarthy's statement, was how great Lorenzo was for the UFC, not how great Lorenzo was for Lorenzo. Of course he did it for the sale. He also fucked the UFC over in the process (and not just the fighters).
     
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