(In the edited-for cable version, Lesnar says "I’m gonna drink a [Bud] Light because Bud Light [is the best], and I might even [do something special for] my wife tonight.")
The first stage in Dana White’s plan to destroy Strikeforce and piss on their ashes comes this Saturday at 10 p.m. ET/PT, as Spike will air highlights from UFC 100. The replay card will look like this:
Brock Lesnar vs. Frank Mir
Dan Henderson vs. Michael Bisping
Alan Belcher vs. Yoshihiro Akiyama
Stephan Bonnar vs. Mark Coleman
Shannon Gugerty vs. Matt Grice
Jon Jones vs. Jake O’Brien
Notably, Georges St. Pierre‘s five-round rout of Thiago Alves won’t be part of the show. But then again, we all saw that one already. What you probably haven’t seen are the selected undercard fights: Coleman‘s surprising decision win over Bonnar, Jones‘s submission of O’Brien, and Gugurty‘s submission of Grice. We’ll DVR it to watch later, and if you have the means, we suggest you do the same.
The question is, how much does this really affect the viewership for Strikeforce: Carano vs. Cyborg, which will be happening around the same time? Without any data on the efficiency of MMA counter-programming, I’m gonna go ahead and say: Not much. The people who were planning to watch Carano vs. Cyborg will still watch it. For the most part, the UFC will only be picking off MMA fans who don’t have Showtime or aren’t that interested in the Strikeforce show, and the few poor saps who missed out on UFC 100 altogether.
It’s certainly true that the re-broadcast helps to further promote the UFC brand on basic cable, which is helpful. But perhaps Dana White is content to be that fly that won’t stop buzzing around Scott Coker’s sweaty face at an otherwise enjoyable Sunday picnic. Sure, it’s petty, but after a hundred different petty annoyances, eventually you start thinking about leaving that picnic, so to speak. And of course, the big guns will come out later…