Remember when they forgot their ring? Yeah, well those days are long in the rear view!
According to WSOF executive V.P. Ali Abdel-Aziz, who confirmed the news with MMAFighting, the World Series of Fighting is set to air two live events on NBC in 2014. The first of the two live events will likely take place sometime in the Summer.
The WSOF signed a broadcast deal with the NBC Sports Network in 2012, and in February they signed a new 3 year contract with NBC Sports.
For the WSOF, this is obviously a huge step, not just for them, but for MMA in general this is a big deal. The World Series of Fighting now joins the UFC, Strikeforce, and the Elite XC as the only MMA organizations to hold live events on a national network.
Although the World Series of Fighting isn’t even yet established with the hardcore MMA fanbase, they have been quietly making big steps in increasing their exposure.
In the Summer, the WSOF sneaked a fast one behind MMA fans acquiring Omega MMA. Omega MMA for those unaware was a Nicaraguan based promotion in which after being purchased by the WSOF was rebranded WSOF: Central America. Their inaugrial event was headlined by the infamous Ricardo Mayorga.
In September, the WSOF acquired the Aggression Fighting Championship, a Canadian-based promotion. Their held their debut event in Vancouver last night, with Georgi Karakhanyan wining the inaugrial Featherweight championship.
Also, the WSOF reportedly formed a partnership with the longtime Japanese-based promotion Pancrease to form WSOF: Japan. According to reports, there is hints that they are working on WSOF: New Zealand and WSOF: Australia as well.
Even though the WSOF is just a year old, news that they will air fights on NBC is not all that surprising if you take into consideration that Russell Peltz’s boxing promotion Main Events aired two events on NBC in 2013.
Main Events, like the WSOF has its own fight series on the NBC Sports Network.
WSOF CEO Sig Rogich, according to Fight Opinion’s Zach Arnold is "super-close to the Fertitta empire." If this is the case, Rogich knows not to step on the UFC’s toes; Perhaps this a power move by the WSOF to gain more bargaining power for a potential partnership with Zuffa?
What do you think Maniacs? Also who would you like to see headline the WSOF’s network debut?