Definition of Octagon
What does the term "Octagon" mean in the world of mixed martial arts fighting? Who owns the term "Octagon"?
The term "Octagon" is trademarked by Zuffa, LLC (owner of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, aka "UFC") and refers to the eight-sided fighting ring that is used in the UFC.
The UFC has had to assert their trademark on the "Octagon" multiple times in the past through various lawsuits and settlements. The UFC came to a settlement with Bam Entertainment, Inc. after Zuffa, LLC asserted that the video game company was using an eight-sided fighting ring in their game, "Fire Pro Wrestling". Zuffa, LLC asserted its trademark and the two sides eventually came to a settlement.
If you'll notice, other promotions such as Bellator and the World Series of Fighting do not use an eight-sided ring or refer to their ring as the "Octagon". Instead, Bellator, for instance, uses a circular-shaped ring and refers to it as a "cage".
The "Octagon" is closely associated with the UFC, but many people are not aware that the unique shape of the cage, plus the name "Octagon", have been trademarked by the company.
The "Octagon" is 750 square feet and measures 30 feet across and 6 feet high.
The UFC chose the shape so that one particular discipline would not have an advantage. For instance, boxing is fought in a square ring while wrestling is fought in a circle, so the UFC chose the "Octagon" so that neither discipline would have an advantage.
There are other terms that reference "Octagon" - for instance, UFC President Dana White will watch fights from "Octagonside", while the "Octagon Girls" will hold the round cards before and during the fights.