UFC 229 is not only expected to become the biggest selling card in company history but the show may end up doubling the amount of pay-per-view buys as the previous record holder.
This is according to UFC president Dana White, who had predicted a couple of weeks back that he expected the card headlined by Khabib Nurmagomedov against Conor McGregor to sell somewhere near 2.5 million pay-per-view buys.
The previous record held by McGregor’s 2016 fight against Nate Diaz did approximately 1.6 million buys.
Now White believes the card coming up on Saturday night will not only break that record but current trends are putting UFC 229 into a category all on its own.
“This thing is breaking every record we’ve ever had as far as numbers go,” White told ESPN. “If you look at Mayweather-McGregor, the first episode of Embedded in 24 hours with Mayweather-McGregor did 800,000 views. This one’s at 1.7 million in 24 hours. If you look at the most popular [press conference] when we did the world tour, London was the biggest and over the last year, London has done 4.7 million views. In the last two weeks or however long the press conference has been, we’re almost at 4.7 million views with Khabib and Conor.
“I could just go on for days with numbers and how it’s scaling. It’s going to be big. I told you guys that we trending at 2 million pay-per-view buys — we’re closer to 3 million now. We’re trending close to 3 million pay-per-view buys for this fight.”
White added that he expects the live gate for UFC 229 at approximately $17 million, which would be the second biggest ever behind McGregor’s 2016 fight against Eddie Alvarez at Madison Square Garden that pulled in $18 million.
“This is the biggest fight we’ve ever done,” White said.
If White’s prediction holds true, UFC 229 would become the third biggest pay-per-view in history behind only McGregor’s boxing match against Floyd Mayweather last year and Mayweather’s fight against Manny Pacquiao in 2015.