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Tag: UFC on Fox

Potato Nation Poll: What’s the Biggest MMA News Story of the Year?

(Whatcha gonna do, brother, when Anik-amania runs wild on you?!)

By Jason Moles

In the first three quarters of 2011, the mixed martial arts landscape has changed radically.

We have witnessed the ascension of a smaller promotion with the aid of a hip cable channel and the ruination of a former mecca of MMA at the hands of natural disasters. Fighters have been busted for elevated Testosterone levels, arrested for their various transgressions, cut after a bad showing in the Octagon, and ensured that their job was secure after losing an unprecedented four fights straight.

Of all the things we’ve seen thus far, two news stories are head and shoulders above the rest in terms of impact. The announcement of Zuffa’s acquisition of Strikeforce and the recent news of UFC signing a television deal with FOX are the top two pound-for-pound news stories of 2011. Which story carries more significance? Which is the bigger game-changer? Only here at CagePotato, you the reader get to decide.

But first, let’s lay out both sides of the argument…


Fresh Format in Store for “The Ultimate Fighter” Franchise


After thirteen seasons of The Ultimate Fighter, it’s getting to the point where a coach would have to physically restrain us in front of the television to sit through the show’s stale format and predictable antics, but we still tune in because, damn it, we love this fighting stuff. If you’re in the same boat, there’s good news: thanks to the recent Fox/UFC partnership, the reality series is getting its first major shake up in years.

Previous changes to the franchise included dropping the team-vs-team physical challenges, competitors having to fight their way into the house, and the introduction of the “wild card” spot in the semi-finals. Now, the all new TUF of FX will feature live fights and put match-making responsibility in the hands of the fans.


First ‘UFC on Fox’ Card Will Feature Two Fights, Won’t Compete With Pacquiao

(UFC on FOX video promo via ZombieProphet)

Some fresh details coming in about the UFC’s latest game-changing deal and their November 12th debut on FOX. As first reported by the Las Vegas Sun, the broadcast will be a one-hour live special, kicking off at 6 p.m. PT / 9 p.m. ET., and will feature just two fights along with a full preliminary card. The event is expected to take place at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.

Because of the time-slot, booking the event on the same night as Manny Pacquiao vs. Juan Manuel Marquez 3 won’t be an issue for home viewers. “We’ll be out of there before Pacquiao even walks to the ring,” Lorenzo Fertitta said. “This is going to be a perfect night for any fight fan. Get together with your friends, watch two big fights in the UFC and then change the channel to ride into the Pacquiao pay-per-view.”

As for the UFC on Fox fight card itself, only one prelim match has been announced so far…


UFC/FOX Press Conference Rundown, As Told By Twitter

(Pic via MiddleEasy)

Rejoice, fight fans, because the UFC has finally made it to network television. It was announced today in Los Angeles that the world’s premier MMA promotion will begin hosting live events on FOX beginning November 12th. And that’s just the beginning.

While following the live video stream of today’s UFC/FOX press conference, I — like every other MMA writer who wasn’t actually in the building — was intently monitoring people’s reactions on twitter and chipping in my own two cents when it seemed appropriate. So much information was released in the hour-long session that instead of transcribing the whole mess myself, I’ll just cherry-pick the most important bits that were coming through on our Freaks of the Industry feed. (Future of journalism, people.) All the good stuff is contained right here, so read on…

@stevecofield: UFC/FOX makes it official with a 10:02am PT press release. First event airs on Nov. 12 at 9pm ET. Spring 2012 TUF 15 on FX

@jordanbreen: You’ll never see another sport where so many people are excited for the symbolism of a guy from Newsradio wearing a jacket.

@benfowlkes: Fox cameramen apparently confused about the difference between GSP and Frankie Edgar. Rough start, but okay…

@mikechiappetta: FOX exec says TUF will move to Fridays. “We’ll literally own Friday nights,” he says.


Watch the UFC/FOX Live Press Conference Today at 10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m ET

(Also, Glenn Beck’s old spot will be permanently replaced by BJ Penn tackling people.)

As reported earlier this week, the UFC and FOX have been finalizing a new broadcast deal that will place up to four annual fight events on the network and move weekly programming (like The Ultimate Fighter) to cable subsidiary FX. The partnership will be made public today at a press conference in Los Angeles, scheduled for 10 a.m. local time. (Or at least that’s what we think will happen. I mean, what else would they announce? Their mutual love of It’s Always Sunny?)

Expected for the press conference are Dana White, Lorenzo Fertitta, Georges St. Pierre, Frankie Edgar, Rashad Evans, as well as FOX Sports Media Group Chairman and CEO David Hill, Co-Presidents and COO’s Randy Freer and Eric Shanks, and FX President John Landgraf. will host a live stream of the press conference at 10 a.m. PT / 1 p.m ET. Keep your eye on it, and we’ll talk later.


Report: UFC Inks Multi-Year Broadcast Deal With FOX

Marge Simpson MMA UFC
(Sorry, Marge. Your kind has no place hereProps: Fox)

Although reports like this are usually followed by UFC president Dana White calling “bullshit,” SportsBusinessDaily is breaking a very interesting bit of news:

In what would represent a major push into the mainstream for the UFC, Fox has agreed to a deal that will see the broadcast channel air as many as four MMA events per year, according to several sources. The multiyear deal would mark the first time the UFC will have consistent airtime on a broadcast network.

Fox execs refused to comment on the deal, but sources with knowledge of the negotiations said bidding had gone as high as $90M per year. The Fox deal is believed to be for seven or eight years. As part of the deal, most of the weekly programming that UFC has on Versus and Spike TV will move to FX starting in January. That includes several fight cards, plus shows like the reality series “The Ultimate Fighter.”

Fox-owned Fuel also will wind up with some UFC content. But rumors that Fox will rebrand Fuel as a UFC channel are not true, sources said. Fox was attracted to UFC programming, which has produced some of the highest viewership figures ­— and most attractive demos —­ on Versus and Spike TV…Both the Versus and Spike TV deals with UFC expire at the end of the year.