This Affliction vs UFC 100 business has inspired some genuine interest. Here are some things to think about...
-UFC 100 might not be finished just yet. Would it really be shocking to see another big fight added to the card? We all know how Dana White gets about competition. They already have two five round title fights booked, so it would present some time problems to add a third. More than likely, we won't see Anderson Silva, unless he loses his title to Thales Leites or fights at Light Heavyweight. A better option would be Chuck Liddell vs Keith Jardine. A loss to Rua at UFC 97 would not be too problematic because Jardine is coming off a loss too. Pitting two fighters with their backs against the wall is an old standby for the UFC.
-I'm still having trouble seeing the top Affliction fighters taking a pay cut. What is the upside for them to do it? Do you think the UFC might hold a grudge over that sort of thing? Affliction is done after this Suicide Event and those fighters will need a new employer. Better be careful, guys.
-I've received quite a few emails telling me how this will be the end of the UFC. I think this makes no sense. A hypothetical TV card is not going to drastically affect the PPV buys for UFC 100. The UFC has a pretty loyal PPV audience and you're not gonna suddenly get them to turn on the product when one of the biggest events of the year rolls around. People can simply flip back and forth, if they're really that torn. This isn't to say Affliction would get lousy ratings. As the UFC has shown, there is an enormous audience for counter-PPV programming. I just don't think the two audiences are as directly connected as some think. Meaning the people watching the free stuff usually don't order PPVs anyway.
-Could this all be a ploy to get the UFC worried about July 11th when really the target is June 13th? I'd have a ton of respect for Affliction, if they actually pulled it off. UFC 99 will be in Germany, so it's a tape delay PPV. It makes sense to go after it, but logic and Affliction rarely meet for drinks.
-The other thing I keep coming back to is this is a final advertising opportunity for Affliction's clothing line. They have to produce a third show in some capacity to satisfy contractual obligations to fighters and their "partners". By having it on TV, it saves them some money, especially with promotion. TV channels promote their programming, unless EliteXC is involved. So Affliction gets rid of most of their three fight deals and gets a large TV audience to showcase their brutally ugly t-shirts. That's not a bad deal for a soon to be dead promotion.