“The Ultimate Fighting Championship’s fourth pay-per-view event of 2017 was without question its best yet. The prelims were mostly exciting, resulting in a rare “Fight of the Night” bonus going to an undercard bout, and the main card was composed entirely of fights relevant to the top of their respective divisions — an increasingly noteworthy occurrence in this WMG-IME era of ownership. Compare that to any of the previous events, each of which with one or two meaningful fights per main card, and the matchmaking behind UFC 211 becomes a legitimate achievement.
It’s hard to overstate the importance of relevance. To some extent, fans will always show up for gimmicks, like the now thankfully scrapped Georges St. Pierre-Michael Bisping “super fight” or to see CM Punk catch a beatdown against anyone on the roster, but the best-case scenario for that type of matchmaking is one-off success. Fans stick around when they can invest into a meritocratic infrastructure of some sort. The ultimate appeal of this sport, after all, is to know who the best fighters are and to see how they’re the best…”Like