The return of Conor McGregor on January 18th will mark the first UFC PPV of the new decade. Just looking at the headline you might think that the UFC seem to be putting on a show to start the new year, wheeling out their biggest star in McGregor, however when you dig a little deeper into the UFC 246 card you find out that is far from the truth.
Now with as little disrespect to the fighters on the main card of UFC 246 – this is not a good card. In fact some fans have even gone as far as to say that without the headline fight this would essentially be an ESPN+ card and in some ways it’s hard to disagree. Yet, here we are, approaching this as a PPV – for you Americans, just remember that the UFC have once again upped the price of their PPV cards.
UFC 246 is one of the extremely rare PPV’s that does not feature a title fight as the headline fight, nor a single title fight on the card. Because of this you might think that the UFC would put a number of highly exciting fights onto the main card as a way to engage the interest of any casual fans who are simply returning to watch McGregor, however it appears they have opted to do the opposite.
The UFC 246 card is weak, there is no real way around it. While some more dedicated UFC fans will see that there are some exciting prospects fighting down in the prelims, most of the returning casual fans will have little interest in these fights and will simply tune in for the main card. It seems as though the UFC may have taken advantage of this knowledge to put on a weaker main card, knowing the PPV will have a good buy rate simply because McGregor is returning, saving the better fights for future cards that will need them to secure buys.
However if this is the case, it is a problem. For the casual fans and the regular fans that are paying a higher price for this card, it isn’t an acceptable level. Granted, the return of Conor McGregor is a big event, but it isn’t important enough or big enough to allow for one of the weakest cards that the UFC has put on in a long time.
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Conor McGregor vs. Donald Cerrone
Holly Holm vs. Raquel Pennington
Oleksiy Oliynyk vs. Maurice Greene
Claudia Gadelha vs. Alexa Grasso
Anthony Pettis vs. Carlos Diego Ferreira
Maycee Barber vs. Roxanne Modafferi
Drew Dober vs. Nasrat Haqparast
Andre Fili vs. Sodiq Yusuff
Chas Skelly vs. Grant Dawson
Sabina Mazo vs. JJ Aldrich
Tim Elliott vs. Askar Askarov
Brian Kelleher vs. Ode Osbourne
Justin Ledet vs. Aleksa Camur