First reported by Dana White at Friday’s UFC 101 Q&A session, and officially announced Monday by Spike TV, The Best of Pride Fighting Championships series starts January 11, 2010 at 11pm on Spike. The show will be a weekly one hour series following a similar format to that of the UFC Unleashed, and will be hosted by former Maxim Magazine “Hometown Hotties” finalist Kenda Perez.
The television series will make use of the extensive library of Pride video footage that Zuffa, LLC (parent company of the UFC) purchased when it purchased the promotion back in 2007. It is expected to include footage of many of the former Pride stars that now compete inside the UFC Octagon, including Dan Henderson, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, Anderson Silva, Mirko “Cro Cop” Filopovic, and Wanderlei Silva. Spike has also claimed that they will include Fedor Emelianenko in some of the broadcasts, despite his notable absence from the UFC.
This move by Zuffa was foreshadowed by Owner Lorenzo Fertitta sporting a Pride T-shirt at and around UFC 100 in early July. Since that sighting of Fertitta in the Pride paraphernalia, an official Pride store has been added to the official UFC store on the promotion’s website, and can also be reached by visiting www.pridefcstore.com. The store includes shirts, shorts, hats, and a DVD.
Perhaps Fertitta’s shirt, and the creation of the Pride store were just done in anticipation of the upcoming creation of the The Best of Pride Fighting Championships television series, or maybe all three are foreshadowing another future move by Zuffa, LLC involving the Pride banner. This author believes there may be something bigger brewing with the Pride name, but then I could be completely off base. Only time will tell if I’m right about that, but at least we get to re-watch some great fights.