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FIGHTING FOR AIR TIME


Mixed martial arts (MMA) has been the fastest growing sport in popularity for about the last three years. It has gotten so popular in fact, that it can be viewed on five different television networks. The sport is now mainstream enough to air on CBS.
What used to be considered a "barbaric" sport has now caught the public attention. Whether it is Spike, CBS, Showtime, Versus, or pay-per-view, MMA is out there to be seen (actually you can't miss it while channel surfing).
It has gotten to the point that viewers can see at least four different fight organizations on tv (The Ultimate Fighting Championship, World Extreme Cagefighting, Pride Fighting Championship, Strikeforce), as well as local MMA on pubic channels.
Demand for the sport became great enough that a reality television series, The Ultimate Fighter, was broadcast on Spike TV in 2005 and got the best ratings of any show on the network. The eleventh season will start in March. Monthly live events are shown and pay-per-view buys of MMA have went over $100 million for just one event.
The sport seems here to stay, if television ratings are any indication. You don't need to join a gym to see people get punched, kicked, kneed, or elbowed, anymore, just push the button on your remote.

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