If there was any question about whether Spike would play nice with the UFC in 2012, that was answered Wednesday as the network announced an eight-hour UFC marathon called "UFC Unleashed: Evans vs. Davis" that will run before, during and after UFC on Fox 2.
The schedule for Saturday, January 28th, will feature competitors from the top three matches on the card. The breakdown is as follows:
- 4:00pm ET/re-airs at 9pm PT – UFC Unleashed – Michael Bisping vs. Jorge Rivera
- 5:00pm ET/re-airs at 10:00pm PT – UFC 137 - Phil Davis vs.
- 7:00pm ET/4:00pm PT – UFC Unleashed – Chael Sonnen vs. Renato Sobral (UFC 55)
- 8:00pm ET/ 5:00pm PT – UFC Unleashed – Mark Munoz vs. Kendall Grove (UFC 112)
- 9:00pm ET/ 6:00pm PT– UFC Unleashed - Rashad Evans vs. Brad Imes (TUF 2 Finale)
- 10:00pm ET/ 7:00pm PT – UFC Unleashed - Rashad Evans vs. Quinton Jackson (UFC 114)
- 11:00pm ET/ 8:00pm PT - UFC Unleashed – Rashad Evans vs. Lyoto Machida (UFC 98)
This isn't the first time Spike has counter-programmed their content partner, famously running a Nate Marquardt marathon against Versus earlier in June (ironically, he was scrapped from the card the week of) and recently airing a Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos marathon against the UFC's Fox debut in November. The former actually outdrew the live show, while the latter failed miserably against the massive Fox audience.
Expect more of the same throughout 2012, Spike's final year with access to the UFC library.