Weekend Plans: UFC Senior VP/Government & Regulatory Affairs Marc Ratner
The sports world this weekend will have all eyes on the highly anticipated FLOYD MAYWEATHER JR.-CONOR MCGREGOR fight at T-Mobile Arena, and UFC Senior VP/Government & Regulatory Affairs MARC RATNER will be on hand to make sure things go off without a hitch. Ratner, an Int'l Boxing HOFer and former Exec Dir of the Nevada Athletic Commission, is no stranger to a high-profile boxing match, having been a part of numerous legendary tilts throughout his dynamic career. But even he concedes Saturday night could prove to be special, as traditional UFC fighter McGregor makes his debut in the ring against one of the greatest boxers of all-time. Ratner: "It’s definitely going to be a spectacle, and the most exciting thing to me is the unknown. We just don’t know what can happen."
READY FOR THE BELL: McGregor is supremely confident, ready to fight and he’ll be right on weight. There’s been a buzz in town all week. The fighters got here on Tuesday. On Friday we’ll all be at the live weigh in at 3:00pm PT. They’ll go on the scale, do some interviews and then Floyd and Conor will both disappear. I also happen to be the Commissioner of Officials for high school football here in Southern Nevada and we have a nationally televised game Friday night on ESPN. I’ll actually be there working with the officials that evening. Then Saturday I’ll be at T-Mobile around 3:00pm and along with McGregor’s people will make sure that the ring is good to go and the ropes are set. I always measure the ring as well just to be safe. This fight should go on I would say between 8:45-9:15pm PT I’m guessing. Personally I’ll probably be in the dressing room more as the UFC representative on Conor’s side. But I’ve also seen Floyd fight maybe 25 times so I know his people very well. I’ll really just be an observer more than anything else during the fight itself.
STAGE IS SET: I’m excited for the enthusiasm of the fans to shine through. The Irish will be singing and chanting which makes it a lot of fun. I’d anticipate a lot of star power on-hand with our WME-IMG partners. I know that there will be some big name NBA players around as well. For me the most exciting part is when the lights go down and all of a sudden the fighters come out. The fans start cheering and that’s a moment that no other sport has. The PPV interest is tremendous throughout the world. There’s very few fighters as known as Conor, and Floyd brings a wide audience too. I give him credit because he went on “WRESTLEMANIA” and “DANCING WITH THE STARS.” He brings a different audience himself.
OUTSIDE THE RING: For the last 35 years I’ve run the shot clock for UNLV basketball and I’m also an assistant to replay officials for UNLV football. My wife and I have a nice little house away from Las Vegas where we like to get some relaxation when away from work. TV-wise I was a big fan of “THE SOPRANOS” and now I’m into “BALLERS.” I get a big kick out of DWAYNE JOHNSON and I’m also a fan of the show "RAY DONOVAN.” I like to go to movies as well and I recently just read “HILLBILLY ELEGY" by J.D. VANCE. News-wise, I’m a guy who still likes to read the newspaper.