Bellator to air LIVE on FX in 2011

by Dann Stupp | source:

Bellator Fighting Championships officials are expected to announce a multi-year broadcast deal with FOX Entertainment Group, sources today confirmed with (

As part of the deal, future Bellator events are expected to air live on the FX cable station with tape-delayed broadcasts on sister stations FOX Sports Net and Fuel TV.

Bellator aired its first first season on the Spanish-language ESPN Deportes and its two most recent seasons on FSN.

Sources said the deal is in the process of being finalized and soon could be announced. today spoke to Bellator Chairman and CEO Bjorn Rebney. The former boxing executive said he can't comment on the organization's television efforts but promised fans will be pleased.

"We're super excited about our next evolution on TV," Rebney said. "We're always trying to produce the most exciting and captivating MMA for our fans. Our next step is a significant move in that direction. But at this time, I can't elaborate on what those alliances would be."

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Recent Comments »

Haulport site profile image  

12/10/10 2:01 PM by Haulport

it can be HUGE....but they really need to up the production value. They are very lame as a tv product right now.

Hardy site profile image  

12/9/10 11:46 PM by Hardy

Don't think this has gotten enough attention. Thinking more and more about having a third party with UFC and Strikeforce sounds good.

MMAsurvival site profile image  

12/4/10 1:38 PM by MMAsurvival

A roster can look great on paper, but it sucks when they never actually fight each other. When was the last time Strikeforce did anything that made sense as far as matchmaking? Look at their current titleholders for an example. Who are they scheduled to fight right now? That's right no one because Coker is busy with M-1 rather than his promotion.Overeem vs. ???Feijao vs. ???Jacare vs. ???Diaz vs. ????Melendez vs. ???That is bullshit.

McSlugga site profile image  

12/4/10 12:17 PM by McSlugga

Dope.The UG has been asking for Bellator to get their shit together for a long time when it comes to a TV deal.Count me in with the people who think that Bellator will soon challenge SF for the #2 spot. Its logical.Tournaments win fans over QUICK. They are the truth.If College Football had a tournament instead of a voting poll it would be GIGANTIC.. way bigger than it is now and its huge now.Determining the best of the best in the cage/ on the field is just giving the people their true Champions.

Big Baby Jesus site profile image  

12/4/10 9:00 AM by Big Baby Jesus

Thank God every time I tried to watch Bellator it would get bumped by either the Reds or the high school football report. It made me want to shoot my television.

KimboByGhettoplex site profile image  

12/4/10 8:07 AM by KimboByGhettoplex

On the surface this seems like excellent news, but before jumping up and down we really have to see how this all shakes out.How many fights are they doing? Yeah it's live, but what time slots? Is this primetime? Early evening/late afternoon? Late night/early AM? Are the shows going to actually be pushed by the network, i.e. are we going to have Bellator stars appearing on other Fox programs looking to draw new fans to the sport? Is the show going to be visible at all? And most importantly, what is Bellator getting out of this financially? Are they getting much of any help? Are they going to be able to sign away some of 2nd and 3rd tier guys that Strikeforce can? How many shows are going to be run live? All of them? Is there complimentary programming as well? And lastly, what kind of control does FX have over the product? There are tons of questions. Visibility doesn't necessary equal success, in fact, visibility doesn't necessarily equal visibility on it's own. I hope this deal is a good one between a committed organization and a committed partner and not a last ditch effort to save a promotion. I hope FX promotes the shit out of the product and it's on during prime viewing hours, and I hope there are some highlight shows or fighter background specials that help build stars. We'll have to see.

caposa site profile image  

12/4/10 6:36 AM by caposa

Strikeforce is the clear #2 right now, let's not get crazy. All you have to do is compare their rosters. SF has great HW and MWs, and solid LW and WW divisions. Bellator has a decent WW division, that's about it. I want them to succeed, they aren't quite there yet. This deal is going to be huge for them. I hope they stick with Thursday nights. I'd like to see a LHW tournament.

frontrowbrian site profile image  

12/4/10 6:06 AM by frontrowbrian

 This is a huge deal. Live TV every week on a channel that reaches 96 million homes. Bellator might have a shot at sticking around  

J A Yount site profile image  

12/4/10 3:47 AM by J A Yount

 Bellator's welterweight division is just sick! Hieron, Wallhead, Askren, Hornbuckle, Hawn, Lozano, Good Alvarez & Lombard are top 5 guys. The women are great fights. I think the best yet to come for Bellator, and moving to FX, w/o interuption, might actually get them the exposure FSN just didn't give them. And really, is free MMA on a weekday a bad thing?

MMAsurvival site profile image  

12/4/10 2:57 AM by MMAsurvival

Bellator is the #2 promotion. They are organized, their champions defend their belts and the tournaments lead to logical matchmaking. On the other hand, Strikeforce is an f'n mess. So many great fighters are buried in Strikeforce right now. Scott Coker should go back to being a regional promoter because he is horrible at trying to run a big show. Their champions don't defend their belts and 1/2 of their fighters are complaining about not getting fights. That's why Strikeforce fighters are being forced to fight for Shark Fights and smaller promotions. Meanwhile Coker is claiming that they are going to hold 20+shows for the 3rd straight year, when they never do. Coker needs to spend less time trying to negotiate with M-1 and Fedor and concentrate on running a promotion.Bellator is the place to be, just ask Jay Hieron.