Dana White: UFC 251 is “Trending Higher Than a Conor McGregor Fight”
Conor McGregor is widely considered to be the biggest draw in the game. But, Dana White's claiming UFC 251 is trending to surpass 'Notorious' type numbers.
It certainly seems like buzz for UFC 251 has ratcheted way up after Jorge Masvidal was brought in on short notice. Well, coincidentally…or not, Dana White says Saturday’s card is trending higher than an event featuring Conor McGregor.
White says UFC 251 is “trending off the charts”
UFC will feature not one, not two, but three title fights. In the main event, Masvidal will challenge welterweight champ, Kamaru Usman.
As you surely know, originally, UFC 251 was set to feature Gilbert Burns taking on Usman. Due to a contractual dispute Masvidal was having with the UFC, ‘Durinho’ was signed for the fight.
But, after testing positive for COVID-19, Burns was forced out. Masvidal and the UFC were able to reach a new deal, and ‘Gamebred’ was added to the headliner.
Well, more recently White was asked about buzz for the UFC 251, and he proceeded to say there is extensive, extensive interest (quote via MMA Mania).
“This is trending off the charts,” White said. “This thing is trending higher than a Conor McGregor fight.
The only that this fight is comparable to is Conor vs. Khabib. I’ll give you an interesting stat: Our UFC store has sold more merchandise already now than we did in all of 2019. We already beat 2019 with merchandise. This thing is trending as big of a fight as I’ve ever seen in my entire career.”
And when Masvidal was informed of this news, the outspoken fighter had no issue taking the credit (quote via MMA Fighting).
“You know why?,” Masvidal said. “‘Cause I’m on the motherfu**in’ card.”
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Now, is this all on account of Masvidal? No. After all, the event was already set to feature a rematch between Alexander Volkanovski and Max Holloway, as well as the legendary Jose Aldo taking on Petr Yan.
Further, Usman’s profile has grown considerably since he took out Colby Covington, and Rose Namajunas is also a pretty big name, and she’s going to rematch Jessica Andrade.
In addition, there’s likely a lot of interest in the ‘Fight Island’ angle and other major sports have yet to get going.
But…it definitely does seem like Masvidal has become one of the biggest names in the sport. So, chances are the addition of ‘Gamebred’ to the card has spiked interest, considerably.
UFC 251 will take place on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi.