Lawrence Epstein is the Chief Operating Officer (COO) of the UFC, a position he has held for quite some time now.
Epstein harshly defends those who criticize the promotion’s matchmaking in 2017, saying that it is a hallmark of the company.
“Competitive matchmaking is one of the hallmarks of the UFC,” Epstein said to ESPN. “Yeah, you might do a Mayweather-McGregor fight here or there, or something the fans are dying to see, but at the end of the day, competitive matchmaking is what we do. I think it’s a bit of a misnomer to say we’ve gotten away from that.”
The promotion was hit hard this year by the absence of its two biggest starts in UFC Lightweight Champion Conor McGregor and former UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion Ronda Rousey.
One sport that Epstein believes the UFC has a far better matchmaking model than is that of professional boxing.
“In boxing, you’ve got to be 20-0 before you become somebody, and yet you haven’t fought anybody. That’s not our model,” says Epstein.
UFC Fight Night St. Louis is the next event for the promotion, with Dooho Choi and Jeremy Stephens in the main event.