On Thursday CBS announced a deal with ProElite, a producer of mixed martial arts events, that will bring MMA to primetime network television in the near future. The network is planning to air two-hour special events four times a year on Saturday nights.
I’m way more of a boxing fan than I am of MMA. I’ve given MMA the “old college try” on several occasions, but have never been particularly excited about the sport. When the fighters are on their feet, I can sometimes get into the action. But when they hit the ground and try to win with submission holds, I have a hard time not turning the channel. Give me Friday Night Fights any day of the week.
But this is a really interesting development for the sport. Several years ago people were trying to get Ultimate Fighting banned. They cleaned the sport up a bit and repackaged it, and now it’s going to be on one of the “big four” networks. I guess it has officially come of age.