DALLAS, TX (Apr 8, 2008) — SUN Sports & Entertainment Inc. announced today that the Dallas-based Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) production and promotion company has signed an Agreement with Fox Sports Net (FSN) to telecast SUN’s new innovative, MMA TV series: “GI Vs. Pro.”
SUN’s “Art of War” division will produce a series of nine MMA events that will air as one-hour specials Saturday nights at midnight on FSN, beginning July 19th, 2008 and concluding on September 13th, 2008.
“GI Vs. Pro” will pit current and former MMA-trained armed services members against professional mixed martial arts fighters from around the country. All fights will be scheduled for three, 5-minute rounds. “GI Vs. Pro” action will be fought inside a circular cage — a first on FSN.
FSN announcer Jay Glazer and analyst Frank Trigg, who worked as the commentary team for the Pride Fighting Championships on the network, will also team up on the “GI Vs. Pro” telecasts.
SUN CEO CJ Comu stated, “We at SUN are extremely pleased to be working with such a respected network as FSN, which will telecast this unique and exciting series into millions of homes across the country.
“Our agreement with FSN is an important milestone for SUN as we continue to implement our growth strategy and develop relationships with international and domestic partners. By showcasing our world-class fighters through well produced, quality events on FSN, SUN’s position as an emerging global MMA organization is only further enhanced.”
“MMA is on fire,” said FSN VP of Production Gary Garcia. “This show, featuring intense battles between elite, fine-tuned athletes, is the perfect brand extension for the U.S. military to hit their target demo right between the eyes.”
In addition to the FSN and SUN announcement, Florida-based Show Partners Inc. has been selected by SUN to provide television production, operations and design services in support of the “GI Vs. Pro” series of MMA events.
“Show Partners is pleased to have been selected by SUN for the production of the “GI Vs. Pro” and look forward to working with SUN and FSN,” said Show Partners EVP Larry Rogers. “This format, pitting combat-ready members of the U.S. Military against proven MMA fighters promises to deliver an emotional series of events featuring unprecedented toughness and excitement.”
With a 23-year history as veterans of live event and television productions, Show Partners’ staff have earned 15 National Emmy Awards, providing global support for networks and production companies worldwide.
Additionally, FOX Interactive and SUN will collaborate on generating interactive content for both companies’ platforms, including FOXSports.com. The online offerings could include streaming of events, clips syndicated across the FOX Network and other enhanced content to build an online community around each FSN broadcast and SUN events.
Mixed Martial Arts is a sport evolved from a number of ancient combat disciplines including judo, jiu-jitsu, karate, wrestling and kickboxing. World-class athletes engage in hand-to-hand combat in a ring — both caged and traditional — and must adapt their fighting style to fit their opponent. The wide variety of styles and techniques make every event an unpredictable spectacle.
Below is the 2008 “GI Vs. Pro” Fox Sports Net telecast schedule
Sat. July 19 – GI Vs. Pro I – 12:00 Midnight
Sat. July 26 – GI Vs. Pro II – 12:00 Midnight
Sat. Aug 2 – GI Vs. Pro III – 12:00 Midnight
Sat. Aug 9 – GI Vs. Pro IV – 12:00 Midnight
Sat. Aug 16 – GI Vs. Pro V – 12:00 Midnight
Sat. Aug 23 – GI Vs. Pro VI – 12:00 Midnight
Sat. Aug 30 – GI Vs. Pro VII – 12:00 Midnight
Sat. Sept 6 – GI Vs. Pro VIII – 12:00 Midnight
Sat. Sept 13 – GI Vs. Pro FINALS – 12:00 Midnight