The UFC has officially entered the money fights era. The promotion's trademark meritocracy is all but dead and has been replaced by a system where sometimes the worthy fighter gets the big fight, unless there's a bigger, more marketable fight to be made.
For many hardcore MMA fans, this transition has been especially frustrating. Legitimate contenders are being overlooked so that fighters like Georges St-Pierre, who's been on hiatus since 2013, can step in and receive an immediate middleweight title fight, despite never competing at 185 lbs. before.
However, the UFC obviously hasn't taken this direction to appeal to hardcore fans. They know that more likely than not, those fans will always come back, so their patronage is taken for granted. These super fights are angled at the fickle casual fans who normally only tune in to see the likes of Conor McGregor or Ronda Rousey. It's a pretty easy formula: big fights means more eyes on the product, which in turn means more money for UFC executives to spend on bedazzled t-shirts and not promote the flyweight division. And if big money blockbuster fights are the flavor of the week, the least we can do is have some fun with them.