"Every sport goes through cycles as old stars fade and new stars develop," Cuban said. "Just when things seem down and pay-per-view numbers slip, some new storyline and a new name will emerge, and everyone will forget the downtime. MMA is fundamentally strong.
"A great example of how strong it is are the regionals. Promoters like XFC, Lion Fight, Legacy and MFC are not only stable, they are growing and working from very sound financial footing. That's something that you didn't see in the past and proof of just how strong the sport has become."
And while entertainment programming will factor heavily into AXS TV's future plans, Cuban said the channel will remain committed to MMA as it grows its subscriber base with cable and satellite providers across the country.
"We continue to grow," Cuban said. "We are now past 40 million subscribers. When you consider that we are not offered in standard definition anywhere but DISH Network, it means our penetration is growing quickly. If you are on Time Warner Cable, Cox or Cablevision, call them. Tweet to them. Make it clear to them that MMA fans deserve AXS TV.
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So Underground, is Mark Cuban right? Is this supposed 'downtime' just cyclical and will big PPV numbers return if the right story or person brings more attention to the sport?
MMA gear now available at the UG Store