Update On UFC TV Negotiations: FOX, ESPN, Turner and NBC all interested.

As a follow-up to his first interview in October regarding UFC TV negotiations, FrankieNYC did a Q&A with members of the Sherdog and MMA Community forums, regarding new information on the UFC television negotiations.


Q: What is the latest offer from Fox and do you think UFC will stay on Fox in 2019 (when the new deal will begin)?

A: The latest offer reported was Fox offering an average of $250 million per year. What we don’t know is how many years and what exactly is included. Is the $250 million offer for the same deal they currently have, or is a different level of content included?

It’s tough to gauge whether UFC will stay on Fox with the current information available, but since Fox has upped their initial offer twice, it’s obvious they want UFC content in 2019 and beyond.



Q: You broke the news of Amazon’s interest in UFC. Any further news on that?

A: Actually, I didn’t break the news of the interest, but I did break the news of Amazon Beta testing UFC. Both Amazon and YouTube have expressed interest in Fight Pass content, both live programming and the complete catalog.



Q: If not Fox, who else might be interested?

A: Dave Meltzer reported that FOX, ESPN, Turner and NBC have been mentioned as potential suitors, along with NBC and ESPN having interest in UFC as both a television and digital property.

I can tell you that I have heard FOX and NBC were the front-runners and Turner’s interest has gone back and forth due to the Time Warner and ATT merger delay.



Q: With a decline in ratings for UFC, how are they getting an offer for more? That does not make any sense.

A: The reality is that live sports programming is considered DVR-proof. That makes content like UFC a premium for advertisers. With human nature as it is, people who do not watch live will fast forward through commercials and that has hurt the TV industry as well as cord-cutting. Also, TV networks use live sports programming to hype their other shows and that is very valuable to networks.

Certainly, UFC was hurt by the recent downturn in ratings regarding negotiations. Nobody can argue that point, but anybody that thought UFC would be offered less in 2019, is not versed on the subject.



Q: I thought UFC was dying? How are they making more money in a new TV deal if they were dying?

A: A company that just had three record-breaking profit years is the exact opposite of dying. I suggest you stop listening to whomever told you that they are dying, because parroting that is just silly.

Interest in viewership has certainly gone down in the past few years and that needs to be addressed to an extent, but there is no panic necessary.



Q: Do you think UFC will get the $450 million per year deal that they expected?

A: Honestly, I don’t think they ever expected that. In negotiations, you ask for a certain amount, knowing you’ll likely settle for a different amount. UFC owners are not strangers to TV negotiations. Remember they were the UFC’s agents on the last TV deal with Fox and this is their wheelhouse.



Q: The news you reported in October, others reported a month afterwards. Where do you get your info and how do you know this stuff?

A: The Sports Business Journal and other outlets reported similar information to what I had already reported about a month earlier.  I took it as a compliment that established outlets verified my information.

As far as where I get news, Dave Meltzer breaks most of the financial news regarding MMA. I’ve slowly but surely built my own sources and it’s nice to see Dave and others credit my work and compliment my insights.

I hope to continue bringing more substance to


Special thanks to MyrddinWild for the great Q’s



F-NYC take:

It’s certainly an interesting time to be an MMA fan with all the upcoming changes to how we will view UFC’s content in the future.

What, where and how we will see the number one organization’s product is still wide open but expect an announcement within a month or two.

Hopefully these changes will be better for the MMA fan.

Fingers crossed!



[email protected]