Spike TV and Bellator MMA have gathered together some of the biggest names in the sport of mixed martial arts to serve as coaches and trainers for the new reality series, “Fight Master: Bellator MMA,” premiering this summer. Randy Couture, Greg Jackson, Frank Shamrock, and Joe Warren will helm four separate fight camps for 32 up-and-coming fighters looking to fight their way into the Bellator tournament and a $100,000 cash prize.
The announcement was made today at a press conference in Los Angeles by Spike President Kevin Kay and Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney.
The 32 fighters, competing for a spot in the welterweight (170lb) tournament in the Fall of 2013, will live and train together in four camps led by the aforementioned legendary coaches. This series is much more than just a tournament, as it will capture the reality of the competitors and the grueling training regimen it takes to become a world-class MMA fighter.
The concept of “Fight Master: Bellator MMA” is unprecedented in that the fighters control their own destiny. They will choose which camp to train with and which opponent they want to fight next. The premiere will feature 8 qualifying fights with each subsequent episode showcasing at least one fight. The finale will be telecast live on Spike with the winner moving on to an upcoming tournament. Bellator announcer Jimmy Smith will serve as host.
“As the fighters’ control their own destiny, they will need to utilize strategy in and out of the cage if they want to succeed and advance each week,” said Sharon Levy, Executive Vice President, Original Series, Spike TV. “The stakes are high and the wrong decision, whether it is picking an opponent you don’t match up well against or a coach and fight camp that you don’t work well with, can mean all the difference.”
The series will delve into the fighters’ personal stories for a glimpse into the often arduous journey that led them to “Fight Master.” Viewers will get to know the man behind the fighter, and follow them on their quest for victory. These determined contestants come from all parts of the country with a wide variety of ethnic and economic backgrounds. However, they all share the same goal – to learn from the sport’s finest trainers and earn a spot in the Bellator tournament.
Spike TV will telecast 10 one-hour episodes of “Fight Master: Bellator MMA.” Production begins in early February in Louisiana. Two of television’s most acclaimed producers, eight-time Emmy® Award winner Bertram van Munster and Elise Doganieri of Profiles Television Productions, the visionaries behind “The Amazing Race,” serve as Executive Producers. Andrea Richter serves as Executive Producer as well and Levy and Tim Duffy, Senior Vice President, Original Programming, Spike TV, will oversee the project for the network.