The Rules do need to be updated, they need to make it more competitive, faster paced. Because as it stands right now, you don't really need MUCH talent in all areas, you just need talent in wrestling. (i do agree with the one guy about core skills) But when you have someone lay on top of someone for 15/25 mins it gets the fighter on the bottom very frustrated.
For instance, if Heath goes to another fight, and the same thing happens to him, do you honestly think he will want to stay in the UFC? NO.
And what happens if that happens to CroCop, do you think he would want to stay in a "gay" league like that? NO.
When you are taking Prides fighters, and they come to the UFC, they don't want to come over here and get laid on for the whole match, it would just make them frutrated (coming from a high impact league to this) and end up leaving the UFC.
UFC lost its HUGE edge when they changed the rules. The UFC almost died because of the rules. So, the rules need to be updated. Just put in a no stall rule! thats it.. poof then more fighters would be standing, and if it goes to the ground then the fighter on the top will keep busy.
I do think the fan base is building, marketing, marketing and more marketing is exposing this sport. But for the "new" fans they are grabbing threw this marketing they would need to keep the attention to make them want to watch the next fight. So with updated rules they would then keep the attention of the new fans, and then people would be talking about it more, and word of mouth is the best marketing technique.