Whether pro wrestling is considered competition of Mixed Martial Arts is up for debate. WWE CEO Vince McMahon denies UFC is his competition, but there’s no question that the two sports compete for pay-per-view dollars and these days, even talent (Lesnar, Lashley).
Spike TV and UFC got the attention of World Wrestling Entertainment when they announced the next live UFC Fight Night event will take place on January 11th – the first time UFC has run a live show on a Monday dnight, head-to-head with WWE Monday Night Raw.
In a move that is likely to upset World Wrestling Entertainment and probably hurt the PPV buyrate of its biggest show of the year, UFC have decided to bump UFC 111 ahead to weeks from 3/12 PPV to 3/26, the night before WrestleMania 26.
UFC 111 will take place from Newark, NJ and will be headlined by Georges St. Pierre vs. Dan Hardy.
It should also be noted that the highly anticipated Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao superfight will be taking place on 3/12, which likely contributed to UFC’s decision to move their show. The last time UFC went head-to-head the same night against a Floyd Mayweather fight (UFC 103: Franklin vs. Belfort) – UFC got crushed, with Mayweathter’s fight against Ricky Hatton drawing nearly twice as many PPV buys as UFC and setting PPV records. As much trash as Dana White talks about boxing, even he recently joked that he too wants to see the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight and thus would not want to put a UFC event against it.
Wrestling insiders believe this year’s WrestleMania buyrate will take a big hit from the Mayweather-Pacquiao fight, while some MMA journalists are reminding people not to sell WWE short, as WrestleMania is still WWE‘s “Superbowl” event and a proven commodity on PPV. March will be a big month for fight fans and it will be very interesting to see how the PPV dollars are spent.