On June 29, 2015, UFC and Reebok finally revealed the fruits of their exclusive apparel deal made back in December of last year. During a rather unorthodox fashion show, UFC fighters showcased the apparel they would wear entering the ring. These were known as UFC Fight Kits. Needless to say, the MMA community expressed their opinions on social media about them.
However, the UFC and MMA community aren’t the only ones to react to the UFC Fight Kits. Bellator MMA actually took notice too by striking back in a way recognized as trolling. One day after UFC and Reebok showcased their UFC Fight Kits, Bellator MMA made available their own apparel line via online store.
— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) June 30, 2015
The Bellator Shop opened on June 30, 2015, which is — as mentioned earlier — one day after UFC and Reebok showcased their UFC Fight Kits. It already features two hats (unisex) and an array of T-shirts and hoodies, six for the men and eight for the women. There wasn’t any fighter-featured gear, but that doesn’t seem to be an issue for Bellator MMA at the moment. Almost half of their clothing line was sold out.
That fact alone brings up the question why Bellator MMA is initially succeeding in the apparel battle. As detailed by the Examiner, there are two reasons why Bellator MMA’s apparel is selling out faster than UFC and Reebok. First, Bellator MMA’s apparel are reasonably priced. A fine example is their snap-back cap and an all-star T-shirt selling for just $25 each. Most of UFC and Reebok’s items are selling more than triple that price. Ronda Rousey’s jersey for example is being sold for almost $70.
Second, both UFC fighters and the MMA community expressed disdain for the UFC and Reebok designs. Most of them claimed the new fight kit uniforms look like something out of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie. This might be a jab at the use of bright colors as representations for countries (yellow was Sweden, green for Ireland, etc.).
If this apparel situation between UFC with Rebook and Bellator MMA were seen as a fight, it is evident the latter has drawn first blood. However, UFC and Reebok are not out just yet. As mentioned by many online, they can start by lowering their prices.
[Image via Bellator MMA’s Shop]