Ever since the Fuji TV scandal/dropping, there's been nothing but doom and gloom from everyone from MMA journalists right down to the UFC ball-swingers on the forum. Pride's dead. They can't survive. UFC will buy them. Blah blah blah blah blah.
I really just haven't been buying it. They haven't changed their business practices one bit... and still decided to come over to the USA at a much greater expense, rather than just continuing to put on cheaper, more successful home shows in Japan.
Their United States venture doesn't strike me one bit as a last gasp for survival, but rather just part of their natural expansion and evolution.
So anyway... I was on PrideFC.com tonight and thought I'd check out the About Pride section of the webpage. There was an interesting thing at the bottom that said Pride is currently available in the following countries (via broadcast or home video):
Japan, Korea, United States, Canada, Indonesia, Philippines, Taiwan, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Iceland, Lithuania, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Bahrain, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, United Arab Emirates, Yemen, Algeria, Chad, Djibouti, Egypt, Libya, Mauritania, Morocco, Somalia, Sudan, Tunisia
That's a list of 44 countries... and I suspect this page hasn't been updated since it was posted (probably when the English version of the website went up a few years back) since it was reported that around 70% of Croatia was watching Crocop's victory, and they aren't even on that list.
I'm no expert on Pride's financial situation (much like everyone else on here spouting doom and gloom) but I suspect that they are on-par with the UFC when it comes to PPV dollars coming in worldwide. I suspect that each Pride show is more watched worldwide than any UFC show (combination PPV and TV deals). We know that virtually every Pride show has a greater live gate attendance than any UFC show.
I for one just can't believe that Pride's in as dire straits as everyone is blathering on about.
No doubt is the Japanese television deal is very important... and it looks like DSE is negotiating that very well and doing what it takes (Mike Tyson fighting in China on NYE show?) to get a solid deal.
Anyway... if anyone has any FACTS relating to how poorly they are or aren't doing and can add anything to this thread... that would be great. I just don't think the North American reporting on the situation seems terribly accurate.