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Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney: The UFC on FOX is good for the sport of MMA

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And by extension, good for his promotion, Bellator Fighting Championships.

Or at least that's the line he was pushing in an appearance today on the MMA Hour:

"I think it's good for Bellator, I think it's good for the sport of MMA and it remains to see how that will work out with the UFC, but on its face, it sure doesn't look like a bad situation."

Obviously, the thinking is that if the UFC can greatly improve the image of MMA to a wider audience on network TV, which they will attempt to do starting with an event on Nov. 12 on FOX, then Bellator will be the unintended beneficiary.

Theoretically, the UFC will introduce enough new fans to the product that some of those fans will venture on over to MTV2 and become fans of Bellator.

It would be much easier for that to happen if Rebney could get his promotion on Spike TV, which is in around 20 million more homes than MTV2 and already has a great association with the sport thanks to its previous relationship with the UFC.

But Rebney says that's not up to him and expands on that by explaining that he's rather happy with the progress his company has made since he's been in charge.

"Viacom is hugely, hugely successful entertainment empire that has motion pictures and television networks underneath that umbrella and they do extremely well on multiple fronts. And there's a lot of really smart people who makes decisions as to who goes where and who does what, when certain programming premieres and when certain programmings does the things that it does. My job is really, truly to build this brand. To produce unbelievable shows, deliver them to our partners and try to keep signing world class fighters like the Pat Currans of the world, the [Rene] Nazares and the Mike Chandlers and the Eddies (Alvarez)."

When looking at the current climate in MMA, it makes the most sense for Bellator and Spike TV to hook up. If Bellator wants to be considered a serious player in the game, a deal with Spike, which has shown a willingness to offer unprecedented support, is paramount.

Of course, until a deal is done and the decision has ultimately been made, it's in Rebney's best interests to continue to push the status quo. Can't blame him for making prudent business decisions.

What do you think of the potential of this deal, Maniacs? Are you more or less likely to watch Bellator if it makes the move to Spike TV?

And do you agree with Rebney that the UFC on FOX will only help his promotion?

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