The biggest complaint from fans about the UFC’s debut on FOX at the weekend was that it was only an hour long and featured only one bout, which proved to be problematic when that fight lasted just 64 seconds!
Luckily it appears that FOX are planning to be much more ambitious with their second live UFC offering on the network which is rumored to be taking place in January.
According to UFC commentator Mike Goldberg during an interview on Ariel Helwani’s ‘MMA Hour’ show earlier today FOX execs are planning to extend the ‘UFC On FOX 2’ event to a full two and a half hours.
If so that’s only slightly shorter than a standard 3 hour PPV event and a half hour longer than the free-to-air events we’ve been accustomed to watching on the likes of Spike TV and Versus.
Assuming this is the case then it’s a good move by FOX. Part of the appeal of a UFC event has always been that unlike boxing there’s more than one good fight on a card.
This weekend’s show didn’t capitalize on that fact and lost out when the co-main event between Clay Guida and Ben Henderson turned out to be one of the best fights of the year and yet was only seen by those who tuned into watch the prelims live on Facebook.
A two and a half hour broadcast will give plenty of opportunity for a number of fights to be shown, and for FOX to also add in their pre and post-fight analysis sections, giving fans the best of both worlds.
Interestingly it was only last week that FOX suggested they would be doing 1.5hr shows on the network, while Yahoo’s Kevin Iole stated on Saturday night that he had been told they were only planning to air two fights during that time slot.
The events of Saturday night were part of the learning curve for both the UFC and FOX however, and it seems that they may now have had second thoughts about that.
If so it’s good to see that FOX aren’t set in their ways and are willing to adjust to make the best of their new seven year deal with the UFC.