I needed a full week to really think about the announcement of ESPN out bidding Fox Sports for the UFC content starting in 2019. I needed a whole God damn week to contain my excitement to put into words on why this is a huge deal for the sport of MMA. Here are 10 reasons why this is a big deal:
- I don’t know a single soul alive that says “Let me turn on FS1 to check the scores to the game” Not a single fucking person does that. ESPN is the Mecca and with the UFC being a 1.5 billion dollar investment it will be getting the proper coverage.
- They will have an MMA panel show before every event. I think if ESPN staffs right it can rival the bullshit new NFL Sunday Countdown show. I heard rumors Chris Berman will be coming out of retirement to host the show. (MMA Takes Exclusive: Berman contract states he gets to meet and greet the ring card girls before every event and smoked meats will be provided to him whenever necessary)
- Instead of the obnoxious Karen Bryant hosting the panel shows we will have Trey Wingo or somebody very similar. Let’s be honest, there is infinity Trey Wingo’s that work at ESPN.
- ESPN may finally force the UFC to quit making The Ultimate Fighter. No joke needed.
- Currently ESPN has 18 channels. They could dedicate one channel to all the times former announcer Mike Goldberg messed up.
- We MMA fans get to see Tony Kornhesier and Michael Wilbon discussing MMA on their desperate show. Both men have been outspoken against the sport and now ESPN has 1.5 billion reasons why those dinosaurs must talk about MMA. Suck a butt losers.
- ESPN is owned by Disney and therefore there is a real possibility that the next Disney Prince will be a guy with a mohawk who fights to feed his family. (Just some working titles: The Mohawk Prince, The Fighter with A Secrete, The Neck Tattoo Prince)
- Skip Bayless doesn’t work for ESPN.
- ESPN hired Ariel Helwani who is a very established MMA journalist. He has won 10 Fighters Only Journalist Of The Year Awards. What is that? Doesn’t matter. It’s a made up award. I’ve won 10 MMA Takes Most Handsome and Smart Journalist Award. See what I mean.
- ESPN employs former athletes and coaches like Barry Melrose, Trent Dilfer, Herm Edwards. ESPN will undoubtably hire former MMA greats like Don Frye, Tank Abbott and Mark Coleman. Those guys definitely could use the work.
ESPN becoming the home of the UFC is about as big as it can get for the sport. MMA will pick up a whole new audience and usher in new fans who maybe heard about the sport but didn’t know what channel FS2 was on. I am beyond excited to see how far this sport will go in 2019 with he help of ESPN.
And hey ESPN, if you’re looking for a guy who is not quite dorky enough to be John Anderson but not as crazy as Ray Lewis, I’m your guy.