The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), the foremost mixed martial arts (MMA) league in the world has forged partnership with Smart to become the official mobile carrier of the UFC in the Philippines.
“The Philippine market is very important to UFC. We hope working with Smart as we bring fights here in Manila,” said Kenneth Berger, executive vice-president and general manager of UFC Asia during a press conference on Wednesday at Marco Polo Hotel in Ortigas, Pasig City.
“Last year, the first-ever UFC event in Manila is a strong success. This year, we are more committed to bring the sport to the Philippines. And one of the key drivers of this is the UFC Fight Pass,” he added.
The UFC Fight Pass is a digital platform providing fans with exclusive UFC content and access to the world’s largest library of MMA fights.
“We are very delighted to partner with UFC and we can’t wait to bring the sport to our subscribers through our unparalleled services and offers,” said Oscar Reyes, 1st vice-president of wireless consumer broadband of Smart.
Also present during the event was Stephen “Wonder Boy” Thompson, currently No.3 in official UFC welterweight rankings.
Thompson, who arrived in Manila on Sunday, had already met with Filipino fans.
“Keep training hard guys. I know you have few guys in UFC. But lets keep building it out. We will let you come and do some training with you here pretty soon. Hope to comeback in the Philippines for another UFC,” said Thompson on Filipino MMA fighters competing in the UFC.
Thompson is coming off two notable wins, first against Jake Ellenberger, and second against Johnny Hemdricks.
Besides Thompson, present in the launch is the first Asian and full-blooded Filipina Octagon girl Red Dela Cruz.
“I feel proud na ako ‘yung first Filipina and Asian to be an Octagon girl,” Dela Cruz told The Manila Times.
As part of his Manila tour, Thompson will have an open workout and meet and greet today at the Mall of Asia Music Hall in Pasay City.
JEAN RUSSEL V. DAVID