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Affliction MMA to partner with Fight Network to air 'Banned'

Over the weekend, The Fight Network announced that it has landed exclusive rights to air the one hour under card portion of the July 19 Affliction: "Banned" pay-per-view (PPV) event on its network. The Fight Network’s president and CEO, George Burger, made the announcement at a press conference held at the MMA Expo in Toronto, Canada.

Burger was flanked at the press conference by Affliction Vice President Tom Atencio; Fight Network Senior Vice President and founder Mike Garrow; Mark "The Machine" Hominic; as well as heavyweights, Andrei "The Pitbull" Arlovski and "Big" Ben Rothwell, who are set to face each other on the star studded card.

Here’s a snip from Burger on the news:

"This is a stellar card, arguably the best collection of heavyweights under one roof in the history of MMA. The Fight Network is excited to be working side by side with Affliction in taking the launch of this promotion worldwide … Not only are we showing the undercard live and exclusively on our Network, a great lead-in to the Pay-Per-View event, but we are also distributing the Pay-Per-View in Canada, Australia, the United States and the United Kingdom."

Mauro Ranallo was the emcee for the press conference and revealed that both he and "Big" John McCarthy will be calling the play-by-play on July 19.

The Afflicition Banned main event showcases the return of Fedor Emelianenko against former UFC heavyweight champion, Tim "The Maine-iac" Sylvia, at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. The rest of the card reads like a rolodex of match ups any promotion would be eager to put together in a heartbeat.

The question now remains: Do we pay to watch an absolutely spectacular card Affliction card or do we peep the best pound-for-pound fighter take a step up in weight and headline a card that is taking shape nicely for free?

Set the Tivo ... it’s going to be a busy weekend. Discuss amongst yourselves.

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