Speaking with Yahoo! Sports’s Kevin Iole, Affliction VP Tom Atencio claimed the final number of pay-per-view buys brought in for the company’s debut MMA card last Saturday would “definitely” be over 100,000:
“I don’t have everything on that yet, but for the people who felt this was going to be a total flop in that regard, I have news for them. It’s already done a lot better than what I’ve heard people speculating. I’m not going to release the (official) number, but it’s already well beyond what people have been saying. Well beyond.”
We’ll take that claim at face value for now, but Atencio could be blowing smoke, obviously. Iole reports that $500,000 of the event’s $2.1 million live gate haul came from tickets purchased by Affliction itself. Atencio also admitted that the show’s ridiculous payroll was intended to grab attention:
“We had to come out swinging and make a big splash and we did. Having said that, we realize this is a business first and that if we don’t turn a profit, we’re not going to be around. We need to have the guys understand that. We know (fighters) want to be treated well and we’re willing to work with them, but they have to be willing to work with us. We just can’t go out there and throw money around without thought. The guys have to be willing to work with us and can’t simply look at us as a cash cow.”
Of course not, Tom — they’re interested in you because of your mind.