by Ken Pishna – MMAWeekly.com
UFC 106 on Saturday night pulled in a crowd of 10,529 with total gate receipts of $3,003,250. It was a virtual sellout with just 223 tickets left unused, according to the Nevada State Athletic Commission.
While the numbers sound great and the UFC has been about as recession proof as any business could hope to be during the current economic climate, even the Ultimate Fighting Championship feels some effect. Of the 10,529 people in attendance at UFC 106, 3,898 of those were given comp tickets, or 37 percent of the total attendance. The NSAC reported a value of $2,331,250 for those comp tickets.
The number of tickets given away isn’t far off the mark for UFC president Dana White’s recent gestures.
Prior to UFC 104, the brash executive said he gave away 3,300 tickets to the event at the Staples Center in October, and didn’t mind doing it.
“The people that couldn’t afford ’em came and found me, and I gave (tickets) to them,” he said at the time.
Even with the giveaways in Los Angeles, UFC 104 pulled in a similar $2.9 million gate.
“Dude, I’m (expletive) thrilled in this economy that we’re doing what we’re doing,” remarked White.
Trying to piggyback on the popularity of its much more famous sibling, World Extreme Cagefighting featured a title fight between Mike Brown and Jose Aldo last Wendesday, just days prior to UFC 106.
Despite consistently providing fights that are considered Fight of the Year candidates, the promotion has a long way to go to catch up to the UFC.
WEC 44: Brown vs. Aldo drew a total attendance of 1,845 with gate receipts totaling $131,200, according to NSAC officials. There were 297 tickets unused for the event.