UFC president Dana White came to yesterday’s UFC 112 pre-fight press conference armed with a host of new talking points. Speaking to reporters just days away from the promotions first ever event in Abu Dhabi, White was already looking to the future, and mentioned several new international destinations that the UFC expects to visit in the coming months.
Take a look below for some of the main topics with an international flavor that he discussed.
- The UFC will host a special show for the troops in Afghanistan sometime within the next few months. Due to the logistical problems posed by such an event it may well be that the fight is not televised live, and in fact there may be no footage available whatsoever.
- A Middle-Eastern version of The Ultimate Fighter is currently being planned for Abu Dhabi, and filming could begin in the next 2-3 months.
- China is another country that the UFC are targeting, and White suggests that it could happen “really quickly.”
- White admitted that signing Russian heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko, “has become my obsession now. I want it worse than the fans want it.” He also stated that he had been in discussion with Fedor’s management, “more recently than you would think.”
When the UFC announced that they were welcoming the Abu Dhabi based ‘Flash Entertainment’ group as their new strategic partners there as always an emphasis on how the company, who have strong ties throughout the Middle-East, Asia and beyond, could get the UFC into those markets far quicker than they would have been able to otherwise.
Barely few months later we’re already beginning to see the fruits of their labor, and early indications suggests that the globalization of mixed martial arts, and the UFC brand in particular, could be about to accelerate at a remarkable pace over the next few years.