It was pretty clear when Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg rented out the entire UFC Apex facility for an entire fight card, that something more than just ‘being a big MMA fan’ was in the works. It didn’t take long after that for the UFC to announce that they would be selling virtual reality ‘metaverse’ access to some of their fight cards going forward, as the world’s largest MMA promotion entered a partnership with the social media giant.
Now we’re seeing a little more of just what that deal might mean for the UFC, with Zuckerberg stealing some ring time with featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski. In a video posted to his Instagram account, the tech mogul showed off some of Metaverse’s potential for creative interaction. Namely the kind that can be got through full motion capture suits and a whole heap of expensive equipment. That’s right, they got it on in a virtual sparring session.
“Last year UFC #1 pound-for-pound fighter Alex Volkanovski stopped by Meta HQ to train with me,” some intern wrote in a message accompanying the post, “and for fun we tested the limits of our performance avatars with motion capture in our engage gear. Good luck this weekend Alex!”
Volkanovski is set to take on Islam Makhachev this Saturday, February 11th, in Perth Australia for a chance to win his second UFC title. Makhachev captured lightweight gold last year at UFC 280, with a second round submission win over Charles Oliveira. Featherweight champ Volkanovski will represent the first challenger to the Dagestani’s throne.
About the author: Zane Simon is a senior editor, writer and podcaster for Bloody Elbow. Host of the MMA Vivisection and 6th Round, he has covered MMA and the UFC since 2013. (full bio)
About the author