Fortunately for us MMA fans who were left salivating after a teaser of an event at UFC 122, the UFC is back this weekend with a card that you will double take when you realize there are actually no Championships on the line. Of course that is because four previous champions make up the two main events of the evening: Lyoto Machida and Rampage Jackson (Light Heavyweight) and Matt Hughes and BJ Penn (Welterweight). With all these legendary names at the top of the card it is a surprise that the event hasn't sold out the +20,000 capacity of The Palace of Auburn Hills. Just looking at this number, one might suspect that demand is low due to a second tier Michigan market. However, taking a look at secondary market ticket prices reveals a different story and suggests that this event might indeed sell out before all the dust settles.
UFC 123 Average Ticket Prices Compared to Previous Events
UPDATE: UFC 123 ticket prices are now at an average price of $277 as of 11/19.
- Since we started monitoring MMA here at SeatGeek we have covered 2 UFC Championship cards and yet UFC 123 is commanding a higher price than both these cards on the resale market
- At $247.12 / ticket this is just higher than BJ Penn's last fight where he headlined in a title fight vs Lightweight Champion, Frankie Edgar
- UFC 123 ticket prices are 12% higher than UFC 121 prices ($220.93) where Brock Lesnar lost his Heavyweight Championship to Cain Velasquez
I will leave it to the experts to determine if it is the influx of Canadian MMA fans, the inclusion of four legends on the card or some other reason that is driving demand in a market that is not typically known for its strong economy or MMA fanbase.
Discussion of the UFC 123 Fight Card
Matt Hughes and BJ Penn will also do their fair share of the heavylifting. The rubber match between the two MMA legends could conceivably be each man's last fight in the Octagon. While unlikely, a win for Hughes could be satisfying enough to ride off into the sunset,where as a loss for Penn could send him into a funk and possibly retirement. Both men have legions of fans and will make UFC 123 a resounding success.
UFC 123 Promo Trailer
What do you suspect is driving up prices for UFC 123? Are fans coming in from nearby Canada? Is the card alone enough to draw the crowds? Would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.
Remember you can get UFC Tickets right here on SeatGeek.com.