Recently WEC general manager Reed Harris mentioned that the promotion would like to expand beyond just the US market and establish itself in the UK. Now the UFC’s UK president Marshall Zelaznik has confirmed the plans to mmaunltd and stated that a TV deal in the UK might be on the horizon.
“We are right now trying to get a WEC deal done for TV. I think that has to come first (before a WEC card in the UK),” Zelaznik said. “We will hopefully get a TV deal done here within the next couple to three months. Once that’s done we’ll get Ireland…we’re hopefully launching soon with WEC in Ireland.”
Currently the UFC is the only major organization that broadcasts regular events via ESPN UK, although the recent Strikeforce: Fedor Vs Rogers card was shown on tape delay via Bravo.
Interestingly, Zelaznik stated that the WEC, which generally draws a smaller audience than the UFC shows, might be a perfect opportunity to give fans outside of England a chance to experience high quality mixed martial arts events live.
“WEC provides some interesting opportunities here because (of) the smaller venues that we can’t bring the UFC in, but we can go into Scotland, we can got into Wales with the WEC and put them in some really nice venues.”
If these plans can be turned into a reality then it would be a dream come true for the UK’s mixed martial arts fans. It also makes good business sense for the WEC. The UK has of course already proven itself to be hungry for quality MMA events as is highlighted by the 16,000 people will pack into Manchester’s MEN arena on Saturday night for UFC 105.
Having already been impressed with the atmosphere of the fans in England and Ireland, they are guaranteed to be equally enamored with the enthusiasm of the Scottish and Welsh.
Watch Marshall Zelaznik’s full interview with mmaunltd below: