The UFC on ESPN era is upon us and the first event (UFC Brooklyn or UFC on ESPN+ 1) is in the books. How did the fighting promotion and broadcasting company do? I’d argue, overall, pretty well. While I hate the ESPN+ user interface, think the inclusion of Stephen A. Smith is misguided and thought more of a production refresh was owed, there were plenty of successes. ESPN+ added huge numbers of subscribers, they made a flyweight title fight feel big, the other shows on ESPN – SportsCenter, First Take, etc. – all did a good job previewing and promoting the show. The fights were strong, pacing was improved and lessons learned during the FOX Sports era were incorporated. Improvements need to be made, but they’re off to a auspicious beginning.
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