Will Fuel TV Become the UFC Channel?

November 9, 2011
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“You’re not gonna not be able to have Fuel if you’re a UFC fan,” UFC president Dana White declared on Wednesday.

Fuel TV may not fully morph into “The UFC Channel,” but it will give the extreme sports network a much needed shot in the arm to kick start an aggressive push into a higher-profile market.

“The theme has just moved from ‘Girls and Boys Come Out and Play’ to ‘Enter Sandman,’” quipped Fox Sports Media Chairman David Hill.

The UFC will be a cornerstone in Fox’s efforts to interject life in Fuel TV, which has struggled to build its audience. UFC programming, at a minimum, is slated to make up about 25-percent of the network’s programming when the UFC and Fox television partnership officially kicks off in January.

“We’re gonna have over north of 2,000 hours (of UFC programming),” said George Greenberg, Fuel TV’s general manager. “We’ll have at least 100 hours of live programming, and it sounds like Dana is gonna heap a lot more on. We get all the shoulder programming, whether it’s Primetime, Countdown, UFC Replay, Unleashed, Best of annual specials, Ultimate Insider, fighter profiles; we have access to the Pride library.”

The live programming will include preliminary bouts that are currently shown on the UFC’s Facebook page, as well as many UFC Fight Night events and international events that were formerly broadcast on Spike TV or Versus.

“There is gonna be a ton of live fight programming on Fuel,” stated White.

As much as the Fox deal marks a milestone in the UFC’s history – giving it the sports broadcasting platform that company president Dana White and CEO Lorenzo Fertitta have long coveted – it also gives Fox the building blocks it needs in the extreme sports category to raise Fuel’s profile.

“To have 25-percent of our programming devoted to the UFC, we can now cherry pick the premier action sports stuff,” said Greenberg. “You’re gonna see live surfing that you haven’t seen before on this network, key snowboarding events, but we’ll just be more selective with the addition of the UFC.”

“It’s a coming out party for the UFC on Fox and it’s a coming out party for Fuel doing the UFC as well,” added Fox Sports co-president Eric Shanks. “It’s a way to raise awareness for Fuel.”

So while Fuel TV won’t be rebranded as UFC TV or the like, it may soon feel like to MMA fans.

Follow @KenPishna on Twitter or e-mail Ken Pishna.
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  • That would suck so bad!! You have to pay extra to have Fuel TV. If the UFC is moving from Spike to Fuel, it would suck badly!! It would have been great if it was a move to FOX. This is not progress. It is just not convenience for the fans and it is not having the sport of MMA be at the same level as the NFL or MLB. Am I wrong??


    u r correct sir. im starting to feel uncomfortable with the UFC moving to FOX.

  • 4 Events on Fox
    6 Events and TUF on FX
    Everything else on Fuel TV

  • ricardos

    I think they are just showing reruns and unleashed on FUEL TV. Live events will still be free on FOX and FX.

    • Fuel TV will have Primetime, Unleashed, Replay, Best of shows, Pride, LIVE prelims that are currently on Facebook will be on there, and also some live Fight Night events and some live and tape-delayed foreign events, Ultimate Insider and a lot of other content. So, yea, Fuel will have rehashed stuff, but also lots of original programming and live fights.

  • so,where can us english fans tht dnt have sky n have virgin c the hw fight .?any help,,

    • If you have virgin in the U.K., you will be able to watch the fight on UFC.tv according to UFC ceo Lorenzo Fertitta.

  • *shrug* Fuel is one of the channels on Dish Network’s 250 package, which isn’t the most expensive. No problem for me.

  • thanks ken,so do we pay for it on there, or is it free.?HAPPY DAYS,,cant wait 4 this card,,

  • sb

    “It’s time!”