It looks like whoever was trying to keep Affliction out of Las Vegas succeeded, because according to a report from Sherdog.com, Affliction is postponing their Oct. 11 “Day of Reckoning” event until sometime in January, and moving the show back to California.
The Oct. 11 Affliction event scheduled for the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas has been postponed, Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Keith Kizer confirmed Wednesday to Sherdog.com.
Affliction contacted Kizer on Wednesday morning to inform him that the event would be moved to a January date at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif.
No reasons were given for the change, but one can only assume it had to do with these comments that Tom Atencio made to MMAWeekly.com.
“They’ve been messing with me every step of the way. There have been issues that I’ve been dealing with. So I can’t say it’s them, but there’s been things we’ve been dealing with that have never happened before, so I guess that’s why.”
Just to clarify, Atencio is referring to the UFC. To fair, there is no proof that the UFC is in fact responsible for Affliction’s problems promoting in Vegas, and it’s something Dana White vehemently denied in this interview with Steve Cofield. That said, Las Vegas is the UFC’s hometown, they’ve already shown their hand in how they deal with their competition, and c’mon, who else would it be?
Well, no matter who was behind it, it worked. They’ve undoubtedly spent a ton of money just on their NASCAR sponsorship and the Times Square billboard promoting the event for Oct. 11, so that money is essentially down the drain.
Looking on the bright side though, maybe it’s a blessing in disguise. Besides the marketing dollars they’ve already spent, they can’t lose money on a show they don’t run. There’s time now to get Fedor back on the card, and if they can get Tito back down to earth, maybe they can get him on the card too.
That’s unless of course, they’re deciding to hang it up since their ace in the hole resigned with the UFC.
[UPDATE 9/10/08 3:39PM ET] – MMARated.com is reporting that as little as 700 tickets may have been sold for Oct. 11. The Thomas & Mack Center apparently has a 19,522 seating capacity for ring events. That’s not good, and certainly a good reason to cancel.
Also, Tito Ortiz is back in the media again saying he is close to signing a deal. He’s says he’s 99% sure he won’t end up in the UFC again. Considering Tito proved himself to be the very definition of the boy who cries wolf, take it with a grain of salt. Figured I would mention it in case it happens to be connected to this story.
[UPDATE 9/10/08 3:58PM ET] – MMAWeekly.com is reporting the event has been moved to Jan. 17, 2009. An Affliction representative told them the move was due to abysmally low ticket sales. Tom Atencio is expected to make a formal announcement soon.