Among my friends I have been saying for some time now that the UFC is now the major league of MMA and all the rest will be relegated to the minor leagues. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy watching any MMA event I can. But the way I see it, the UFC is the major league of MMA. Now, I read a lot of MMA forums and I see people constantly complaining about how the UFC is creating a monopoly and that they are hurting the sport. I completely disagree.
This simplest way I can break this down is this: it has worked for baseball, only one major league; it has worked for football, only one major league; and it has worked for basketball, yet again, only one major league. I was not around when the ABA and the NBA merged, or the AFL and the NFL but I am sure that all the negative people with monopoly burning on their tongues were present there too. But what has happened since then? The leagues grew and expanded, everyone made tons of money, the players unionized and got better benefits. So I ask, why is it bad that the UFC is now becoming the sole major league of MMA?
In a recent article I read on Sherdog even the fighters are in favor of this. Check it out here.
The end of the article states this: The hope for many promoters, fans and fighters is that the deal will solidify the UFC as a major sports league, à la the NFL or Major League Baseball. Looking toward the future, Hendricks believes the time will come when that hope becomes a reality.
“I know the UFC has everything to compete [with the other major sports leagues],” he said. “If the UFC can tap into couple more fans, they might steal some from watching football or baseball. If that happens, the next thing you know, [MMA] is going to explode.”
I understand people have favorite fighters that they follow in the so-called minor leagues and do not want that organization to be label "minor", but the truth is, they are minor leagues. Just like the minor leagues in baseball, these organizations will be a proving ground. When a fighter has proven himself, he should move up to the majors, the UFC. The vast majority of the top fighters already compete in the UFC. Only a handful of other top fighters compete in other organizations against lesser competition. I hope that they realize this and make the move to the UFC so that all the top fighters around the globe are under the UFC banner. When this finally happens, there will no longer be a question of what organization is the major league of MMA.