by Ivan Trembow – MMAWeekly.com
Renato “Babalu” Sobral will be the subject of the next “UFC All Access” special on Spike TV.
As with previous All Access specials, this one will be hosted by Rachelle Leah and will air on the last Monday night before a UFC pay-per-view event. Previous All Access specials focused on the pre-fight training of Rich Franklin, Andrei Arlovski, and Tito Ortiz.
The 30-minute special will air on Monday, August 21st at 10:00 PM. Leading into the All Access special will be the 60-minute UFC 62 Countdown Special, which will air from 9:00 PM to 10:00 PM.
The UFC 61 preview specials on July 3rd kicked off with All Access at 10:00 PM (which drew a 0.6 overall rating) and concluded with the Countdown Special from 10:30 PM to 11:30 PM (which drew a 0.8 overall rating), so this represents a slight chance in schedule for Spike TV. The move makes sense because the stronger show from a ratings standpoint will be able to provide a strong lead-in for the weaker show.
In the case of Renato “Babalu” Sobral in particular, it will be very interesting to see what he has to say before his fight with Chuck Liddell, given the fact that he is currently being positioned as a potential bump in the UFC’s road to a long-awaited showdown between Liddell and Wanderlei Silva.
When the announcement was made during the UFC 61 pay-per-view broadcast that Liddell and Silva would be fighting in the UFC in November, the added line of, “…if Chuck can get past Babalu first” was included almost as an afterthought. In fact, Sobral is anything but an afterthought, and it would be unwise for any opponent to look past him.
When Liddell and Sobral previously faced off in the Octagon at UFC 40 in November 2002, Liddell won by knockout. After the loss to Liddell, Sobral went 7-0 in competition outside of the UFC and has since gone 3-0 in the UFC. In Sobral’s most recent fight, he submitted Mike Van Arsdale at UFC 57 in February of this year.