How a cameo on Friends helped land Bruce Buffer his dream job at UFC and led to 25-year career announcing fights of Conor McGregor, Anderson Silva, Chuck Liddell and more

Bruce Buffer is the iconic voice of the UFC and his association with the promotion goes back a long way.

But it was a cameo on Friends that landed him the gig as octagon announcer full-time, a job he has now held for around 25 years.

Buffer had a brief cameo in a Friends episode back in 1997

Buffer had a brief cameo in a Friends episode back in 1997

Having reconnected with his half brother, Michael, Buffer began as a fight manager, but his real interest was in becoming the voice for the promotion and admitted that was a ‘ploy’ to getting into the job.

He then announced a few fights on the prelims at UFC 8 and then hosted all fights at UFC 10, but owner Robert Myer chose to give a few other people a try.

The 54-year-old was then cast as the octagon announcer in an episode of the hit comedy show in 1997.

It featured Monica Geller’s boyfriend, Pete Becker, played by Jon Favreau, trying to become an Ultimate Fighting Champion.

The episode also features veteran referee John McCarthy and Tank Abbott, who fought Frank Mir and Vitor Belfort in the UFC.

The cameo on Friends led to Buffer getting his dream job.

Buffer has announced the biggest fights in the UFC since 1997

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Buffer has announced the biggest fights in the UFC since 1997

Speaking to BT Sport, he explained: “They called me and said ‘listen, we’re doing a show called Friends, which was the biggest comedy on TV. Warner Brothers want to use a real announcer, so they are coming down to pick up a tape of you, would you to be on the show?’

“I said ‘of course I will’. They came down and picked up the tape and called me that night and told me to be on the set tomorrow morning for rehearsal, you are going to co-star as yourself on Friends.”

It was quite a role and one which landed him his dream job, although he still had work to do to convince Myer to offer it to him full-time.

Buffer’s ‘It’s Time’ catchphrase is iconic

Getty

Buffer’s ‘It’s Time’ catchphrase is iconic

“I called up Robert again and said ‘are you going to be on set? Meet me at lunchtime. I have to talk to you.’

“I met with him and said ‘Robert, I feel like a girl in high school waiting to be asked to the prom. I’m asking and asking, let’s make a deal. Let’s stop screwing around and I’m going to ask you one more time and I’m never going to ask you again.’

“That’s the best poker game I ever played.”

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The rest, as they say, is history as from UFC 13 he was the official octagon announcer for the promotion – in a card that featured Randy Couture and Tito Ortiz.

His ‘It’s Time’ catchphrase developed over the years and has become an iconic part of the UFC.

Not many people can say they’ve been part of the promotion for so long – longer than Dana White.

Michael Buffer, the famed boxing announcer, and Bruce Buffer are half-brothers

Getty

Michael Buffer, the famed boxing announcer, and Bruce Buffer are half-brothers


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