Call the UFC sellouts. They’re perfectly fine with it.
In fact, they’re more than fine with it, since they sold out UFC Fight Night 29: Maia vs. Shields on a Wednesday night at the Jose Correa Gymnasium in Barueri, São Paulo, Brazil, to the tune of 6,621 fans.
“The attendance tonight was 6,621. It was a total sellout for us,” said UFC executive Marshall Zelaznik following the event.
Operating on Wednesday nights is a relatively new approach for the UFC. They are doing it at the request of their U.S. television partners at FOX. When FOX launched the new FOX Sports 1 sports network on Aug. 17, they did so with the promise that the UFC would help them build the network by providing a Wednesday night block of programming that would often include live fights.
Maia vs. Shields was the third Wednesday night event the promotion has operated since the FS1 launch less than two months ago. And so far, Zelaznik says that they are dialing in an approach that balances the audience they can reasonably draw on a mid-week night, while still providing the UFC experience that fans expect.
“It proves that our strategy of these Wednesday nights in these more intimate arenas,” Zelaznik said of the sellout in Bareuri. “We’re optimistic this will continue to work.”
Jake Shields continued his climb back into welterweight title contention at the Jose Correa Gymnasium, earning a split-decision victory over Demian Maia in the night’s main event.
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