Bellator MMA announces move from Paramount Network to CBS Sports Network

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Active Member
Apr 11, 2020

Bellator MMA has a new broadcast partner.

On Friday, Bellator president Scott Coker announced that the ViacomCBS-owned promotion will be leaving the Paramount Network with future cards now airing on the CBS Sports Network instead. The prelims will now air on as well as YouTube.

The move comes after Viacom and CBS completed a merger at the end of 2019 that brought the two companies back together after splitting in 2006. Previously, CBS Corporation operated independently of Viacom, but now the two broadcast companies have reunited, which opened up the possibility for new network partners for Bellator.

The change in networks also comes after Showtime Sports president Stephen Espinosa was delegated in charge of Bellator MMA after a restructuring with executives at ViacomCBS.

Coker added that part of the benefit changing networks will be all Bellator cards airing real time regardless of location
. Many past Bellator events dealt with time delays with broadcasts on the west coast starting later than the east coast feed.

“Viacom’s commitment to mixed martial arts has been strong since 2005,” Coker said on Friday. “Now because of the merger we’re able to switch over to a sports network.”

The switch isn’t necessarily a surprise after Spike TV was rebranded as the Paramount Network in 2018. Since that time, the Paramount Network has shifted its focus to primarily original scripted and unscripted content like the hit series “Yellowstone,” which had the highest ratings for any cable program during the summer.

Bellator was the only sports property still airing on the Paramount Network until now.

CBS Sports Network currently maintains broadcast rights for numerous entities including several major college sports including football and basketball as well as the UEFA Champions League, WNBA, Professional Bull Riders, PGA Tour coverage and tennis.

One downside to the move is CBS Sports Network is available in far less households than the Paramount Network. As of 2015, CBS Sports Network was available in approximately 61 million households while Paramount Network boasts availability to over 80 million households.

The first Bellator card to air on the CBS Sports Network will be on Oct. 1. That card will air at 4 p.m. ET in the United States with Paul Daley facing off against Derek Anderson in the main event from Milan, Italy. The next event will happen on Oct. 10 from Paris, France with Cheick Kongo taking on Tim Johnson in the headliner.

Full story here:

Inside Job

Sapere Aude
First 100
Jan 17, 2015
Potentially, but nothing like that is mentioned in the article. And they simulcast events before with Paramount and DAZN, do I don't see why this would need to be any different.
Dazn hooked me via autopay for another year so I hope it doesn't end too soon.
Not a huge Dazn fan but I want my moneys worth

I like them on CBS...Would love if they could put events on CBS main channel but not sure they wanna take that chance again after the strikeforce post fight scrap.


I'd rather have 4 quarters than 100 pennies.
Aug 7, 2015
They will definitely get promoted more with CBS Sports than they have been with Paramount.
That's not saying much. A dude flying an airplane over corn fields and yelling would be more advertising than they've had since the name change to Paramount.

I am really happy that Coker said that events would be live now instead of the weird ass tape delays that they had been forced to do. That's great news.

Being on a sports network should be beneficial as well.

All that said... CBS Sports isn't included in my cable package but Paramount is (I'm watching Tombstone on it right now) so that's a bummer.

I'll have to go fishing for any exciting cards because I'm not paying extra to watch it on cable and DAZN isn't getting a dime from me.