Dana White: UFC 254 (***AT 2 PM ET***) trending to be the biggest PPV ever
Dana White is the best promoter in combat sports. With the caveat that he is not a medical professional giving you a diagnosis, but a man putting butts in seats, in a recent interview with TMZ sports, White said UFC 254 is trending to be the biggest pay-per-view in league history.
“This thing is trending off the charts for us right now,” said Dana. “So, today is Tuesday, it’s the end of Tuesday going into Wednesday, on Monday, this thing was trending to be the biggest fight we have ever had. Not Thursday, not Friday, Monday.”
These are the biggest to date:
1. UFC 229: Nurmagomedov vs. McGregor – 2,400,000 – $180 million
2. UFC 202: Diaz vs. McGregor II – 1,650,000 – $90 million
3. UFC 100: Lesnar vs. Mir II – 1,600,000 – $82 million
4. UFC 196: McGregor vs. Diaz – 1,500,000 – $80 million
5. UFC 194: Aldo vs. McGregor – 1,400,000 – $80 million
6. UFC 205: Alvarez vs. McGregor – 1,300,000 – $83 million
7. UFC 200: Tate vs. Nunes – 1,200,000 – $71 million
8. UFC 116: Lesnar vs. Carwin – 1,160,000 – $55 million
9 (tie). UFC 193: Rousey vs. Holm – 1,100,000 – $60 million
9 (tie). UFC 207: Nunes vs. Rousey – 1,100,000 – $60 million
“It is trending bigger than [UFC 229] right now,” said White. “Will the trend hold? One of the things that is a big negative for us is that it is not in primetime at home and it is hard to message that to people.”
The UFC 254 start times are:
Early Prelims: 10:15 am ET
Late Prelims: 12:00 pm ET
Main Card: 2:00 pm ET
The biggest PPV ever was Conor McGregor vs. Nurmagomedov. Saturday’s event will showcase Khabib’s ability to pull on his own. But it won’t last much longer. “The Eagle” has said repeatedly that he likely wants to retire at 30-0. That would leave just one fight after Saturday, and Nurmagomedov wants it to be vs. the welterweight GOAT Georges St-Pierre.
“One of the crazy things about this business right now is if you asked me eight months ago, ‘What are you guys doing in December?’ I could tell you exactly what we were gonna do, where it was gonna be, etc,” said White. “Now, all I’m focused on is Saturday. Once Saturday is over, then we’ll go home on Sunday and start figuring out what’s next.
“I don’t know if GSP is a possibility. I’ll talk to Khabib. Usually what happens is the fight will go on, I’ll give them a couple weeks to relax and do their thing and then we’ll reach back out to them and see what’s next.”
“I’d be interested in talking about it; just because that’s what Khabib wants doesn’t mean that fight can be made,” said White said. “There’s just so many things that have to come into play for that fight to happen.”
One thing is for certain. If Khabib wins on Saturday, and if he fights, GSP next and last, he could be the the draw in the three biggest PPV events in MMA history.