if you dont follow Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), you could not possibly understand how loyal and rabid fans of the sport are. When people talk about fans that take supporting their favorites to extremes they usually use Nascar fans as examples. Well write it down. MMA fans blow Nascar fans away. Thats not a knock on Nascar fans, its a tribute to MMA fans.
Unlike the NBA, NHL and NFL, the only athletes getting paid a lot of money to wear T Shirts are MMA fighters.There is a reason that fighters get paid a lot of money by sponsors to wear their apparel. It works. Walk down any crowded street or through any mall and you are going to see guys wearing shirts and gear from TapOut, Affliction and others. These are not discount brands. They are brands that MMA fans happily pay a premium for.
That loyalty extends far beyond clothing and fighters. We have been very fortunate at HDNet to experience that loyalty. HDNet offers more live MMA events than every other network combined. While everyone else wants to make you pay extra on PPV for their fights. All of ours are free. And we continue to expand our offerings to feature the best fighters and fights from around the world. In all weight classes. And we hope to have significant additions to our events roster to announce in the near future.
Beyond live events, we have the only weekly news show dedicated to Mixed Martial Arts on television. Our show, Inside MMA has been called the Sportscenter of MMA. Featuring incomparable Bas Ruten and Kenny Rice, it brings the latest news and interviews and every week features a guest panel with the biggest names in the sport, Fedor, Couture, St. Pierre, Rashad Evans, Mayhem Miller and many, many more.
Combine that with ongoing original shows like the M-1 Challenge and the loyalty from our MMA viewers has been amazing.
Its obvious that some TV distributors don’t quite understand the size and loyalty of MMA fans, but I wanted to take a moment to say thank you to all HDNet subscribers and MMA fans who have gone above and beyond the call of duty in supporting our growth. While we can’t win every battle, we continue our ascent having at least doubled our number of subscribers in every year of our existance with no signs of let up. In particular, I wanted to share an email that exemplifies many that I have received. I could not have said it any better
I Want My MMA!
I had to jump through a few hoops this week to get it.
I’ve been a very disgruntled Time Warner Cable customer. I’ll spare you the laundry list of customer service issues I’ve suffered through. It turns out that none of the issues were a true deal breaker. Time Warner Cable’s legal notice earlier this week that HDNet would be dropped from their channel line-up at the end of this month was that deal breaker. I finally pulled the trigger. On Monday evening, I called Dish Network and scheduled an installation appointment. It took some convincing to get my landlord to sign off on the installation-agreement form. (You have to know my landlord to understand why that is easier said than done.) I got the form signed, and I successfully made the switch to satellite yesterday. Today, I’m visiting my local TWC office to drop off both of their lousy Motorola dvr set-top boxes.
Dropping HDNet was Time Warner Cable’s last straw. I’m a huge MMA fan. If I’m going to pay a lot of money every month for television, the service provider must have HDNet. The first thing I do every Friday evening when I get home from a long week of work is tune in to Bas Rutten on Inside MMA. I pull all-nighters watching the live broadcasts of Dream and Sengoku from Japan. There is no way I’m going to miss the ‘roid raging freak Jose Canseco get his ass handed to him by a 7″ tall Korean freak show in the early morning hours of next Tuesday.
When asked why Time Warner Cable was dropping HDNet, Multichannel.com reported TWC director of corporate public relations executive Robyn Watson as stating “There’s limited appeal for the programming.”
I feel this statement is a bit shortsighted. HDNet broadcasts an extensive amount of the best non-UFC branded mixed martial arts programming. The sport is growing rapidly, and so is the audience. Do they understand that are dropping a revenue stream with excellent growth potential. Do the TWC executives not realize that even though HDNet doesn’t carry UFC programming, they will be losing subscribers like myself that spend upwards of $50 monthly on UFC pay-per-view events?
Mr. Cuban, I’m not writing just to kiss your ass. I do have a question for you. Are you going to be able to close the deal when HDNet’s contract with Dish Network is up for renegotiation? I have no clue as to when your deal with Dish Network ends, and I signed a 2-year agreement as a new subscriber. Needlees to say, the early termination penalty is fairly stiff.
Thank you for your time,
My response: Dear Chris, we just signed an extension with Dish Network. So you are safe for years to come. Enjoy our programming and make sure to tell your friends !