Bellator Strengthens Russian Ties With Russia 2 Broadcast Deal
By Michael Hatamoto
Bellator and Russian broadcaster Russia 2 entered a partnership in which MMA fights will be shown to a potential audience of more than 83 million.
Bellator and Russia 2, which is the biggest Russian sports network, will start in late September.
Here is what Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney to say in a press release:
“Over the last year, as the Bellator brand has experienced enormous growth and our talent team has signed the greatest Russian mixed martial artists in the world, the timing was perfect to align Bellator with Russia’s leading sports network. R2 carries the world’s greatest sports to Russian viewers. So, aligning Bellator with this industry giant is another very exciting step forward in the evolution of the Bellator brand worldwide.”
This is a great partnership for Bellator, as the US MMA promotion continues to build a global following. Although the UFC is the clear No. 1 MMA promotion, Bellator has steadily built a strong, dedicated group of fans – and looks to continue its international expansion.
Bellator has signed several Eastern European fighters such as phenom Alexander “Tiger” Sarnavskiy and Vitaly Minakov, joining the likes of Alexander Shlemenko, Andrey Koreshkov, Ruslan Magomedov, Akop Stepanyan, and Magomedrasul Khasbulaev.
Russia, with its strong background of boxing and sambo, has seen a dramatic increase in MMA popularity throughout the nation’s urban areas.