Every superstar needs a solid opening act. According to Fox Sports president Eric Shanks, the Octagon would serve as the perfect lead-in for the biggest sporting event of each year.
FOX has obtained the programming rights for the the 2014 Super Bowl, which will be held inside MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. During Tuesday’s conference call, Shanks made no secret that he wants his partners to host a UFC event in the nearby area the night prior.
“We would love to,” Shanks emphatically stated. “We think that Super Bowl week in New York is going to be unlike anything else. We’re going to own the city, we’re going to own that week of sports television and there’s nothing we can think of than a big fight that week.
“We’re talking to [UFC president Dana White] (Pictured) and [UFC co-owner Lorenzo Feritta about that, love for it to happen. We’ve got to see if they can put it together.”
The UFC is notorious for hosting blockbuster shows on Super Bowl Saturday, however they almost always take place in their backyard of Las Vegas. Additionally, box office cards means big pay-per-view dollars.
Would the UFC be willing to forgo that payday to hold a freebie fight card on FOX? The short-term hit might be worth it given the mainstream exposure and celebrity plugs the Octagon would garner that week.
Furthermore, the reported seven-year, $90 million deal the UFC inked with FOX last year should help soften the financial burden.