Starting next season, Bellator Fighting Championships will be taking their talents to Fridays. Instead of continuing to compete against UFC pay-per-views on Saturdays, the organization believes it has a better chance at expanding their brand by going against smaller promotions that air on HDNet and “The Ultimate Fighter” when it transitions to FX.
“Our focus was to find the right night, where the largest number of MMA fans could enjoy the show,” Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney said. “We’ve been discussing this move with our partners at Viacom for months. When we looked at the alternatives, we agreed that Fridays provided a great night for us to reach MMA fans with our live, real sport, tournament events every week.”
Season 6 debuts March 2nd and features five tournaments. Eight-man tourneys will take place in the featherweight, lightweight, welterweight and middleweight classes. The fighters that sweep their respective brackets will advance to challenge their division’s reigning champion.
Bellator will select a fifth division to join next season shortly. Furthermore, the organization has yet to decide which Friday timeslot MTV2 (EPIX in high-definition) will use to broadcast the fights.
Courtesy of their new partnership with FOX, the UFC will offer live tournament fights for the upcoming seasons of ‘TUF.’ Beginning with the reality show’s 15th installment, elimination bouts will go down Fridays on FX.