There’s been an interesting game of chicken developing between the UFC and their current / soon to be former girlfriend Spike TV. While new UFC crap ends up on FOX at the start of 2012, Spike still has broadcast rights to the UFC library until 2013. More interesting still: so long as that deal is active, Spike can’t move Bellator onto their channel. Spike execs let it leak through the press that they’d be happy to sell the 2012 library rights back to the UFC for a good price. Otherwise, counter-promotion! Market confusion! Consequences will never be the same!
Further solidifying the rift between the UFC and its longtime cable partner, Spike TV today announced counter-programming for the UFC’s debut on network TV.
On Nov. 12, Spike TV will air a “UFC Unleashed” marathon – dubbed “Dos Santos vs. Velasquez: Unleashed for the Heavyweight Title” – featuring past fights with UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez and Junior Dos Santos.
Not surprisingly, the marathon begins just as Velasquez and Dos Santos fight at UFC on FOX 1, the UFC’s first show on network TV.
Dos Santos vs Velasquez Unleashed for the Heavyweight Title! I like that. You couldn’t think up a sneakier name to confound people looking for the event in their TV guide if you tried. Seriously. Give it a shot. Some high level dickery went into this one.