Dana White says UFC 205 already broke Madison Square Garden record
Everybody knew the UFC's first show in New York was going to be big, but no one could have predicted record-breaking numbers.
UFC 205 — the upcoming show taking place on Nov. 12 headlined by lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez taking on featherweight king Conor McGregor — has already shattered a 17-year-old record before the event has even started.
According to UFC president Dana White, the live gate for UFC 205 will ultimately be the biggest in the history of the iconic arena, which has held some of the biggest sporting and music events of the past century.
"It's the biggest, baddest card we've ever done in the history of the company," White said while speaking to FOX at the World Series. "We've been in all the biggest, best arenas all over the world — Madison Square Garden's a big deal.
"All the legendary fights that have been held there, all the legendary events and we actually broke the gate record for Madison Square Garden so, so far so good, I'm excited."
The current record holder for a live gate at Madison Square Garden is the 1999 boxing match between Lennox Lewis and Evander Holyfield, which raked in $13.5 million with over 21,000 fans in attendance.
If UFC 205 has already broken that record, then the promotion has set another high mark with the upcoming show in New York.
The biggest live gate in UFC history was set at UFC 129 in 2011 when Georges St-Pierre faced Jake Shields in Toronto. That gate totaled out at $12,075,000 but there were also over 55,000 fans in attendance for the card.
It appears White's plan to land in the Big Apple with a mighty splash has already paid off with the fight card still two weeks away.
"Obviously, our first time going into MSG and it's been such a big deal getting in there, I wanted to make sure when we went to New York, we delivered," White said. "Three incredible title fights plus the rest of the card is packed with ridiculous fights including the main and co-main event on FOX Sports 1 that night for the prelims."
The UFC 205 prelims will air live on FS1 starting Saturday night, Nov. 12 at 8 p.m. ET with former lightweight champion Frankie Edgar facing off with knockout artist Jeremy Stephens in the night's featured bout.