UFC president Dana White, who has long teased an international version of "The Ultimate Fighter" today said a Brazilian edition of the long-running reality series is "a done deal" and will debut in the near future.
And while White insists the company has not yet confirmed when it will return to Brazil for a live event, he said the UFC is actively working on booking "as many (events) as we possibly can."
"It’s a huge market for us," White said of Brazil. "It’s incredible down there. We’re going to do as many as we possibly can."
White, who revealed the plans following Thursday’s pre-UFC 137 presser in Las Vegas, said multiple recent reports tying the promotion to an early 2012 event in Brazilian cities Rio de Janeiro, Sao Paulo and Brasilia were premature and that while UFC co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta recently traveled the country in search of potential hosts, contracts are still in the works.
"Still working on it," White told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). "There’s just so much. You guys know from being around the sport so long how crazy this thing is and how crazy we’ve been. This time period right now from like two months ago to the end of this year is insane.
"There’s just so many things to do and so much juggling and so much work that needs to be done. It’s been crazy. We’re working on it right now."
So while the details of the UFC’s return to Brazil following a highly successful UFC 134 event this past August remain unclear, White said the South American nation does hold claim to at least one bragging right: The country will soon host the first-ever international version of "The Ultimate Fighter."
"The first international ‘TUF’ will be in Brazil," White said.
But what about Canada or the Philippines, two other countries that had been linked to hosting the first international version of the show?
"We’re doing all those, too," White said. "This one just got done really fast."
White said a host city for the Brazilian version of "TUF" has yet to be determined but will, of course, air in Brazil. However, White said the international editions of the show will also likely air in the U.S.
"What we’re talking about is the other ones that air in other countries, we’re trying to figure out how we can air them on FUEL TV," White said. "We’ll probably air them on FUEL TV.
"If you’re a UFC fan, you want FUEL TV. FUEL TV is going to be loaded with all kinds of incredible UFC programming, including live fights and live fights from other countries."