Spate of injuries hurting ticket sales in Montreal?

by Dave Deibert | source:

The comeback of Montreal native and longtime welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre was thought to guarantee a first-week sellout when tickets for UFC 154 became available in September for the Nov. 17 card. Instead, less than three weeks before St-Pierre meets interim welterweight champ Carlos Condit to unify the titles, large groups of seats can be found in each of the top-five price ranges, including 14th row on the floor.

Sales to this point for UFC 154 are around 14,000, according to industry sources.

UFC is still expecting a capacity crowd at the Bell Centre. It's just taking a bit longer than anticipated.

UFC director of Canadian operations Tom Wright wonders if it's the result of a year filled with injuries to big-name competitors who were forced to the sidelines.

"There's been many examples over the last several fights - UFC 151 and 149 in Calgary is a good example of it - where fighters got injured and there were changes to the card," said Wright.

"I think there are fans who are saying, 'You know what? I'm really excited about GSP's return and I love the fact that we've got Kampmann versus Hendricks in the co-main event, and we've got a bunch of Canadians on the card. But you know what? I bought my tickets 12 weeks out for Calgary and a whole bunch of things happened. I'm going to wait until it's a little closer.'"

"I absolutely think that you're seeing that. I think you're going to see that going forward."

Still, Wright has no doubts the Bell Centre will be sold out for the return of St-Pierre.

"Absolutely," he said.

Read entire article...

All that said, although UFC 154 was not an instant sellout, neither was the last GSP fight in Montreal, and that one ended up being the second-biggest crowd in UFC history.


tags: UFC 154   GSP   Georges St-Pierre (detail)  Carlos Condit (detail)  Tom Wright   


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Recent Comments »

kevsh site profile image  

11/1/12 1:41 PM by kevsh

"Ticket sales for UFC events in Canada have slowed considerably since the organization made its first appearance in Toronto last April, with the debut event in Calgary earlier this year being the only exception. That event, however, points to two other potential reasons for the sluggish ticket sales for UFC 154.Unlike Calgary, Montreal is not a new market for the UFC. While cities welcoming an event for the first time are still routinely setting box office records and selling out in no time flat, venues that have played host to the UFC in the past are not. The excitement and novelty of experiencing the UFC live appears to be wearing off, even though watching the fights from home or a bar pales in comparison to seeing it live."This from an article on Sportsnet: Dana's rants to the contrary, it's just as I've been saying: The UFC is a one-trick pony. No wonder they're trying so hard to get to new markets, the "old" ones aren't nearly as interested the 2nd time.

Orcus Knows MMA Better Than Goku site profile image  

11/1/12 9:24 AM by Orcus Knows MMA Better Than Goku

It's the weak card

Letibleu site profile image  

11/1/12 9:18 AM by Letibleu

11$ for warm draft beer in a shitty flimsy plastic cup that barely holds itself together.It feels like the Montreal Bell Center owners are laughing at us.

fightharder site profile image  

11/1/12 1:23 AM by fightharder

Sorry but it just another card where the main event and the co main event are pretty stellar but the rest is average at best. This might sound harsh for the other fighters involved and the undercards have been know to suprise as of late (i taught the Brazilian card was pretty amazing even though i was not really feeling the match up between Bonnar and Silva...though it is always special to see him fight regardless) but i would not spend big money on that card either.   The UFC really should stop treating Canada like some kind of third rated market and make up for the fact that the fucked up down there recently.   I mean Carmont Lawlor, Riggs Diabate and Hominick Garza on the main card REALLY. I can appreciate the fact that they want to showcase the ''local'' talent but i am sure the fans in Canada much rather see foreign top five match ups then these fights.   I dont know whats wrong with the UFC. Since the Fox deal its seems that they have gone the way of the dreaded boxing model ( a big main or co main event and reasonable uninteresting fights to complete the cards....Yes the might be entertaining but of what kind importance are the for the standings in the division...ooh wait those do not matter anymore either).   I am from Europe so the i probably just keep visiting the UK events (which are decent but hardly packaged with top ten level talent either). Though i do want to visit Vegas or Canada (did a couple of months at Uni in Montreal....and loved Toronto as well) for a UFC i would never pay 625 for a card like this. And a hundred bucks for the bleeder seats...i wouldnt even sit their if the offered me a hundred bucks (no view at all).   If this fight does not sell out though it will be indicative of a self made problem by the UFC. On some weird level i kind of hope they wont sell out because they might finally do the smart thing and take a step back events wise and beef up the cards a little more . But not selling out the Bell centre (which isnt the biggest place there is) with the come back fight of the home town hero would be simply appalling and more then a little worrying.

epwar site profile image  

10/31/12 8:10 PM by epwar

LOL @ those insane ticket prices.  I paid $100 for a seat in the first raised section just off the floor for the show they did in DC in October of last year.   At this show a similar section would be $425!  They're gouging GSP fans like a mofo.

TheAxeMurderer84 site profile image  

10/31/12 4:41 PM by TheAxeMurderer84

I paid 150 or so for average tickets in Detroit, was an awesome experience.

Choochy site profile image  

10/31/12 4:40 PM by Choochy

Guess you've only seen one Condit fight.I'm holding out til a few days before. Expecting an injury to fuck up the card still.

Zed Wayne Zed site profile image  

10/31/12 4:26 PM by Zed Wayne Zed

Condit puts you to sleep? Sure.GTFO of here with that trash.

SlyStallowned site profile image  

10/31/12 4:18 PM by SlyStallowned

GSP was the one blinking in that fight.I remember seeing whole sections filing out by around the third round when it became painfully clear that GSP was coasting to another decision victory. If that fight was actually entertaining (as UFC apologists say), everyones asses would be glued to their seats waiting to see what happened.

Phisher site profile image  

10/31/12 4:11 PM by Phisher

"EXCEPT FOR GSP. Who is great but old. Condit puts me to sleep. Points fighters shouldn't be main events " Are you fucking kidding me with this bullshit? Condit has had ONE lackluster fight in his UFC career. GSP has been a safety first fighter since Serra took his head off. It's amazing how MMA fans distort reality to justify rooting for their favorite fighters.