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Bellator Set For Live Debut On Spike TV; Looks To Retain UFC's Demo
Published January 17, 2013
BEHIND THE SCENES: SI.com’s Loretta Hunt noted Bellator has worked with Spike for “more than a year to prepare for its live debut, and a lot has been accomplished in that time,” with the two companies “planning and refining" their product. Bellator less than a month after its deal with Spike was announced “signed into an agreement with Fremantle Media to distribute the promotion's televised events in 107 countries.” Bellator in July “moved its headquarters from Chicago to Southern California to be closer to Spike” in L.A. There has been a “re-branding of both Bellator's logo and name” as there has been “more exposure for Bellator fighters, who have popped up at celebrity events such as Spike's ‘Video Games Awards.’” Spike also has “hooked a big fish in reality TV master Bertrand Van Munster,” who is “producing a Bellator reality series to debut later this year" (SI.com, 1/16).
RAISE THE CURTAIN: In N.Y., Marc Raimondi noted tonight's Bellator fight card will “feature two title fights,” with lightweight champion Michael Chandler defending his title against Rick Hawn in the main event. The card also will “mark the debut" of UFC veteran Renato "Babalu" Sobral. Bellator, which “operates more like a TV show, will air weekly cards every Thursday night on Spike until April.” There will be “three ‘summer series’ events in June, July and August before the ninth season begins again in August.” Welterweight Karl Amoussou said, “Bellator is already the second organization in the world. I think it’s gonna be huge now. It’s going to be way bigger with Spike” (NYPOST.com, 1/15).