THURSDAY NEWS DIGEST 12/22: UFC 207, which relatively few people saw on PPV, will air as a Christmas Eve broadcast special on Fox (w/Hiscoe’s Analysis)

By Michael Hiscoe, MMATorch contributor

Max Holloway (photo credit Tom Szczerbowski © USA Today)

UFC and Fox have decided to take one of the most exciting yet, under-viewed shows of the year and expose it to a bigger audience.

UFC 206, which took place Dec. 10 from Toronto, Ontario on pay-per-view, will be broadcast on the Fox broadcast network on Christmas Eve, just two weeks after its original airing.

The two-hour broadcast will be an abridged version of the event, with four featured fights. The first will be what UFC is billing in a press release as a “Knockout of the Year” candidate featuring Lando Vannatta vs. John Makdessi. The fight originally aired on the Fight Pass portion of the prelims, but was reaired on FS1 later in the night to feature the Vannatta’s vicious finish of Makdessi.

Also featured will be what is widely believed to be the fight of the year between Cub Swanson and Dooho Choi. The fight was a back and forth brawl that saw both men come close to finishing the other and recovering from devastating blows over three rounds.

The Donald Cerrone vs. Matt Brown fight will also be featured in what is billed as a “highlight reel” knockout that saw Cerrone win via head kick in the third round. On almost any other night, Cerrone vs. Browne would have won fight of the night.

Finally, the main event between Max Holloway and Anthony Pettis will air. Holloway finished Pettis with punches, winning the interim featherweight championship.

This marks the first time a UFC pay-per-view has been broadcast for free on the main Fox network and the soonest a pay-per-view card has aired on TV after its original airing. Typically pay-per-view events are held back for at least 30 days before being made available on UFC Fight Pass or other platforms. The show starts at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on Fox.

Hiscoe’s Analysis: This is a good way for UFC to get some more eyeballs on what was a card with some very memorable fights and finishes, with the best being featured on this broadcast. It also gives Fox some programming for what otherwise is a lame duck night on TV. UFC 206 does not appear to have done well on pay-per-view and it’s doubtful they are giving up much if any replay business by putting it on TV at this point. It will allow a casual audience to see one of UFC’s best ever fights and also expose Max Holloway to a wider audience so all in all it’s a win-win for everybody.


-Nate Diaz has been linked to a fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov, but it appears these are just rumour. Diaz told MMA Fighting that “I’m only fighting at lightweight for a big fight or 20 million just to take the call.”

-Cain Velasquez disclosed to ESPN that he has been using CBD oil to manage pain ahead of his UFC 207 fight with Fabricio Werdum. CBD is banned in-competition but fair game out of competition. Velasquez had previously shared that he has back surgery scheduled for a few days after the fight.

-Carlos Diego Ferreira has received a lenient 17-month suspension for testing positive for 7-keto-DHEA and Ostarine. He voluntarily disclosed the 7-keto-DHEA not realizing it was a banned substance and it was found that the Ostarine was an undisclosed ingredient of the same supplement, thus he was granted some leniency against the usual 24 month suspension. Nevada had given Ferreira a one year suspension but UFC will honor the longer USADA suspension. (SOURCE)

-Yancy Medeiros vs. Li Jingliang is booked for UFC on Fox on Jan. 28 from Denver.


Ronda Rousey vs. Miesha Tate from UFC 168 in Dec. 2013: CLICK HERE

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