UFC seems to be facing an issue that’s been haunting the movie and recording industries for years. No, I don’t mean rampant homosexuality. Although if that were the case, at least we could see some fights in DC. Internet piracy actually has become a big concern for the mixed martial arts promotion, especially in the face of wobbly pay-per-view buys and the sudden illness of UFC heavyweight champ Brock Lesnar.
UFC chairman and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta, who testified on behalf of the mixed martial arts league on Wednesday, told CNBC that live streaming to the Web is a major concern, but it’s also hard to deal with.
“These sites provide us with a tool to take live streams down,” Fertitta said. “But for our last fight, there were 160,000 streams going.” –Darren Rovell.
Lesnar, by the way, is out of the hospital and seems to be doing better, as far as bearded white guys behind a table are concerned. UFC plans to issue an interim heavyweight title while Lesnar recovers from diverticulitis. Why? In what other sport would they do this? The Steelers weren’t interim AFC champs when Tom Brady went down in Week 1. What would an interim championship belt look like? I think it’d look like a regular belt, affixed with a giant Post-It that reads “Back In 5 Minutes.”