Despite the struggling U.S. economy, the Ultimate Fighting Championship on Saturday night was able to draw 14,272 fans to the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas for UFC 91.
The showdown between Randy Couture and Brock Lesnar accounted for live gate receipts of $4.8 million, according to the promotion. That number places Couture vs. Lesnar behind only Chuck Liddell vs. Tito Ortiz and Georges St. Pierre vs. Matt Hughes in gate receipts in the UFC's history in Nevada.
Not quite a full sell-out, UFC President Dana White was pleased with the turnout.
"It's amazing. The gate that we did ... in these hard economic times," he stated after the event. "So many people are losing their jobs. Nobody is spending any money. Holiday season is coming up. We feel blessed. We're very happy and feel very lucky that we're able to pull these kinds of numbers."
The numbers are telling for the popularity of mixed martial arts and, more specifically, the UFC brand. White is frequently on the scene in Vegas and noted, "This city has been like a ghost town (lately) ... It's scary times and to see this place pumping the way that it was for this fight, it's awesome."