MMA fans are about to get far more for their $9.99/month than before. On Saturday, the Ultimate Fighting Championship announced they had obtained the rights to the fight archives of Cage Rage, Extreme Challenge MMA, the XFO, UCMMA, Hook N Shoot, TKO, King of the Cage and the Pancrase organizations.
Fans will soon get to experience past events from those promotions in the spring of 2015 via UFC FIGHT PASS, the UFC’s digital streaming service.
“When we launched UFC Fight Pass one year ago, we said that it would keep getting better and better and would offer fight fans unrivaled value for money,” UFC chief content officer Marshall Zelaznik said. “We believe we’ve delivered on that promise yet again with this exciting announcement that these major fight libraries will be coming to Fight Pass.”
The new libraries will join those of the WEC, Strikeforce, WFA, PRIDE FC, EliteXC, Affliction, Invicta FC and of course UFC.
“When we are finally done ingesting all these new libraries, we expect to be offering our members access to over 13,000 fights from all over the world and across and the entire history of our sport,” Zelaznik added. “That’s an astonishing 6,500 hours of archived fights on top of all the interviews, documentaries, original programming and live fights we have on UFC FIGHT PASS.”
Let’s be real, only HARDCORE MMA fans really care about fights that happened in these smaller promotions back in the day. But hey, it’s better than nothing.
UFC Fight Pass’ new fight archives will include:
· Cage Rage – the British based promotion was active from 2002 to 2008 and featured Vitor Belfort, Michael Bisping, Anderson Silva, “Bigfoot” Silva, Dan Severn, Brad Pickett and more.
· Extreme Challenge MMA – Formed in the mid-1990s, Extreme Challenge’s vast library includes everything from MMA pioneer fights with the likes of UFC Hall of Famers Dan Severn, Matt Hughes and Pat Miletich to bouts featuring modern UFC starts including Tim Kennedy and reigning welterweight champion Robbie Lawler.
· XFO – The premiere regional promotion in American’s Mid-West since its 2004 inception, the X-Treme Fighting Organization’s archives boast appearances from Chael Sonnen, Clay Guida, Jamie Varner and Felice Herrig.
· UCMMA – The successor to Cage Rage Championships, UCMMA features some of the best British talent including the early bouts of Jimi Manuwa, Tom Watson and Brad Pickett.
· Hook N Shoot – A US based group which ran from the mid-1990s to 2011 and boasted appearances from future UFC fighters like champions Jens Pulver and Frank Mir, contenders including Antonio Nogueira and female pioneers including Miesha Tate.
· King of the Cage – Founded in 1998 in California, KOTC has featured a who’s who of MMA over the years, including Dan Severn, Rampage Jackson, Daniel Cormier, Rory MacDonald, Urijah Faber, and early career appearances from current UFC champions Ronda Rousey, Demetrious Johnson, Robbie Lawler and TJ Dillashaw.
· TKO – This Canadian league ran from 2000 to 2008 and served as a proving ground for the best Canadian talent including Patrick Cote, Sam Stout and Mark Hominick and Georges St-Pierre.
· Pancrase – Launched in 1993, this iconic organization from Japan has featured legendary MMA pioneers including Ken Shamrock, Bas Rutten, Josh Barnett and Masakatsu Funaki plus more modern names like Jose Aldo and Chael Sonnen.