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UFC's sale further blurs the line between the sport and entertainment

July 11,2016 22:08

Maybe this makes perfect sense in the entertainment world, or maybe you believe there is no such thing as coincidence. In the movie, which was panned by critics, one of the characters, Turtle (Jerry Ferrara), gets Rousey to agree to go on a date with ...and more »



Is it a case of life imitating art or was it part of the script all along?The announcement that WME-IMG has purchased UFC for a $4 billion brings to mind the closing synergy between the real-life fighting sport and sports entertainment.
In the forgettable 2015 movie “Entourage,” based on the HBO series of the same name, one of the many subplots is how one member of the entourage wants to date Ronda Rousey.OK, Rousey had been pushing to be more of a star outside the octagon than inside before she tasted a bit of professional mortality against Holly Holm, so being in this movie was nothing unusual.

But then you realize the centerpiece of the show “Entourage” is the crazed agent/studio chief Ari Gold (played by Jeremy Piven), a character modeled after Ari Emanuel, who just happens to head WME-IMG, which happens to represents Rousey.
See the most-read stories in Sports this hour >>Maybe this makes perfect sense in the entertainment world, or maybe you believe there is no such thing as coincidence.In the movie, which was panned by critics, one of the characters, Turtle (Jerry Ferrara), gets Rousey to agree to go on a date with him if he can last 30 seconds in the cage with her. It leads to Rousey’s best line, when she says, “Last 60 seconds and I'll let you …” leaving the rest of the sentence to no one’s imagination.
The only thing worse than spoiling the outcome would be making you watch the movie. He lasts the full minute.All of this is a way of saying that as UFC has adopted some of the best standards and practices of promotion from sports entertainment innovator WWE, the line between sports and sports entertainment gets a little more blurred.In fairness to UFC, it did scratch a headliner days before its major pay-per-view last week, something WWE has yet to do.MORE SPORTS NEWSUFC's $4-billion sale to WME-IMG said to 'ensure sport’s success on a global scale'Suspense over Rio team picks is intense, and drawn out. Especially for Douglas.Tim Duncan retires after 19 NBA seasons, all with the San Antonio Spurs

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