Friday Night Lights Out
The logo for Friday Night Lights on Spike.
Presented byScott Hanson
Thomas Hearns
Dana Jacobson
Jimmy Smith
Antonio Tarver
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
Production
Camera setupMulti-camera
Running timeVarious
Production companySpike
Release
Original networkSpike
Picture format720p (HDTV)
Original releaseMarch 13, 2015 (2015-03-13) –
January 13, 2017 (2017-01-13)

Friday Night Lights Out is the branding[1] formally used for broadcasts of combat sports on the American cable network Spike (now Paramount Network).

The branding was first announced in January 2015 when, following a similar deal made by NBC, Spike[2][3] announced they would air monthly fight cards by the Haymon Boxing-created "Premier Boxing Champions".[4][5][6]

The branding would eventually be phased out after Spike's deals with PBC and Glory ended, leaving only the network's mixed martial arts coverage.[7]

Coverage overview

The branding came about from a rotation of live combat sporting events on Spike that were commonly aired on Friday nights, which included mixed martial arts cards from the Viacom-owned Bellator MMA promotion, and kickboxing events by Glory. On those weeks in which there weren't any live fights, Spike intended on broadcasting “shoulder programming” designed to introduce viewers to fighters’ backstories and build momentum for grudge matches.[8] In 2015, Spike and Premiere Boxing Champions signed a two-year agreement, with negotiations for a third year in 2017 that never made it into the final paperwork.[9] The branding debuted on March 13, 2015 with Spike's first PBC fight card.[10][11][12]

Spike's final PBC card aired on January 13, 2017.[13] David Schwarz, Senior Vice President of Communications at Spike TV, said that one of the reasons for Spike deciding to discontinue its commitment to PBC was “a general dissatisfaction with the quality of cards being provided by PBC founder Al Haymon.”[14][15][16][17]

Commentators

Antonio Tarver,[18] who served as a member of Spike's broadcast team, explained that "I remember back in the day when fighters started their careers on NBC. Network TV. That's how legendary stars were made. I think NBC and Spike are going to do the same for today's fighters."[19]

Joining Tarver on commentary was co-analyst Jimmy Smith,[20][21] Dana Jacobson[22][23] as host, Thomas Hearns as the pre-fight analyst, and Scott Hanson[24] as play-by-play announcer.

References

  1. ^ "Mr. Friday Night Lights Out? Joe Schilling eyes PBC Boxing in addition to Bellator and GLORY". MMAMania (SBNation). Vox Media. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  2. ^ Christ, Scott (July 27, 2016). PBC on Spike preview: Adonis Stevenson vs Thomas Williams Jr.
  3. ^ Nash, John S. (March 13, 2015). "Spike TV President talks PBC: 'When would there be a better time to invest in boxing?'". Bloody Elbow.
  4. ^ "Spike Gets In The Ring With Premier Boxing Champions". Spike.com. January 22, 2015. Retrieved January 24, 2015.
  5. ^ "Premier Boxing Champions: Start Date, TV Schedule, Fighters for Spike TV Series". Bleacher Report. January 22, 2015. Retrieved January 24, 2015.
  6. ^ "Spike TV to begin airing monthly PBC fights". Retrieved January 24, 2015.
  7. ^ "Glory announces ESPN partnership and Glory 29 Copenhagen". © 2016 Vox Media, Inc. 2016-02-26. Retrieved 2016-02-29.
  8. ^ Encarnacao, Jack (March 15, 2015). "Cable expands on fight game". Boston Herald.
  9. ^ Willis, George (April 15, 2017). "Premier Boxing Champions will survive end of Spike TV deal". New York Post.
  10. ^ Juon, Steve (February 20, 2015). "Bellator's Jimmy Smith joins Antonio Tarver on Spike TV's Premier Boxing Champions". MMA Mania.
  11. ^ "PBC on Spike TV draws 581,000 viewers". MMA Payout. September 14, 2015.
  12. ^ Mazique, Brian. "Premier Boxing Champions: Start Date, TV Schedule, Fighters for Spike TV Series". Bleacher Report.
  13. ^ "Lara vs Foreman highlights: January 13, 2017". Premier Boxing Champions. January 13, 2017.
  14. ^ Tate, Caryn A. (April 14, 2017). "The Truth About Premier Boxing Champions". The Boxing Tribune.
  15. ^ Christ, Scott (April 12, 2017). "Premier Boxing Champions, Spike part ways -- at least for now". Bad Left Hook.
  16. ^ Rafael, Dan (April 12, 2017). "Spike TV deal with Premier Boxing Champions has reached conclusion". ESPN.
  17. ^ "Spike TV Ends Deal With Premier Boxing Champions Early Over Quality Of Fight Cards". Sports Business Daily. April 13, 2017.
  18. ^ Kowal, Eric. "Antonio Tarver and Jimmy Smith named color analysts for "Premier Boxing Champions" series on Spike". My MMA News.
  19. ^ "Is HBO vs. Al Haymon Boxing's Next Big Fight?". Bleacher Report. Retrieved 14 March 2015.
  20. ^ Thomas, Luke (March 13, 2015). "With Premier Boxing Champions, Spike tries to give boxing what it gave to mixed martial arts". MMA Fighting.
  21. ^ "PBC on Spike TV: Tarver, Smith Join Broadcast Team". BoxingScene.com. February 19, 2015.
  22. ^ "Dana Jacobson to host PBC on Spike monthly series". Premier Boxing Champions. February 6, 2015.
  23. ^ Hauser, Thomas. A Hard World: An Inside Look at Another Year in Boxing. University of Arkansas Press. p. 181.
  24. ^ Scott Hanson to announce monthly PBC fights on Spike TV. February 11, 2015.