FOX, UFC announce multiyear deal
The UFC has found a home on FOX.
The leading mixed martial arts organization announced a seven-year agreement with FOX to show UFC programming on the FOX broadcast network and cable TV channels FX and FUEL TV.
According to the deal, four live UFC fights a year will be shown on FOX and 32 on FX, including 24 in conjunction with two seasons of the UFC's reality show "The Ultimate Fighter."
The first UFC fight on FOX will air at 9 p.m. ET Nov. 12. No details for that fight have been announced.
"The Ultimate Fighter" will begin airing on FX in spring 2012 with a new format that includes live fights rather than prerecorded events. Other UFC programming will be shown on FUEL TV.
"We're excited to be part of the FOX family," UFC president Dana White said. "The UFC is finally where it belongs — on the No. 1 network in the country and aligned with the most prestigious sports properties in the world. I’ve always said that the UFC will be the biggest sport in the world, and with this relationship it will become a reality."
"My brother Frank, Dana and I always believed that our passion for the sport of mixed martial arts would help us to build the UFC into a successful global brand and ultimately make it one of the premier sports properties in the world,” said Lorenzo Fertitta, chairman and CEO of the UFC. "The partnership with FOX is a major step in making this a reality and also builds on the great relationship that we already have established with FOX in Latin America, Australia and Europe."
"Mixed martial arts is not only the fastest-growing sport in the world but also the world's most exciting form of man-to-man competition, and the UFC is the world's premier MMA organization," said Eric Shanks, president and co-COO of FOX Sports Media Group. "Since FOX Sports is America's No. 1 sports network and FOX is America's No. 1 network for young adults, the UFC on FOX is a perfect match."
"UFC's growth over the past decade is nothing short of phenomenal, and it has become one of the marquee sports in this country," said John Landgraf, president and general manager of FX Networks. "There is a reason for its rising popularity. It features some of the greatest athletes in the world, and we believe it will be a terrific addition to our schedule and look forward to our relationship."