This is the week ESPN MMA Live finally makes the jump from ESPN.com to ESPN 2. For now, ESPN MMA Live will air on ESPN 2 on Thursday nights at 1AM ET/10PM PT. The timeslot sucks, but hey it’s better than nothing.
If you’re still pissing and moaning though, this should cheer you up. The ESPN MMA Live crew will be hosting a one hour preview special and post-fight extra show live from UFC 113 at the Bell Centre this Saturday at 9PM ET, and the best part is both shows will air on ESPN 2.
“Our regular timeslot will be Thursdays at 1 a.m. ET,” Anik today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). “We will do a weigh-in special live from inside the Bell Centre in Montreal, and that will be the half-hour leading up to the weigh-ins, and that will be on ESPN.com. But we’ll really blow it out Saturday at 9 to 10 p.m. ET on ESPN2. We’ll do a full one-hour preview special.”
“You won’t get those prelims on Spike TV, which I know is a little disappointing to MMA fans, but you are going to have a live one-hour preview show on ESPN2,” Anik said. “Hopefully the UFC will help us drive the audience, and then hopefully during the pay-per-view, they help us drive the audience back to the post-fight extra.”
They plan to do the same at UFC 114 in Las Vegas at the end of the month, however only the post-fight extra show will air on ESPN 2. The network had prior commitments and won’t be able to broadcast the preview special.
By the way, this is only a trial run for the month of May. If you want MMA Live to stick around on actual television, watch it, especially if you have one of those Nielsen ratings boxes.