Despite summer move to Wednesdays, Spike unsure of Bellator Season 9 time slot


mike-chandler-4.jpgThe second event of Bellator’s upcoming “Summer Series” is expected to take place Wednesday in July, a Spike TV official today told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com), but the remainder of the promotion’s live-event schedule is undetermined.

It was announced that Bellator’s lead-in programming for its eighth season, TNA Impact Wrestling, is returning to its old time slot later on Thursday nights with the tournament-based promotion on a temporary hiatus.

But the official said it’s too early to say whether Bellator’s move to Wednesday is permanent. For now, the weeknight will host the first season of “Fight Master,” which debuts immediately after the first event of the upcoming “Summer Series,” Bellator 96, on June 19. Spike TV has ordered a total of 10 episodes of the reality show.

“We haven’t made any decision about moving it off Thursday,” the official said. “We’ll take a look at the time slot for September down the road, but right now, this is a change for the summer.”

Featuring a four-man tournament in the light-heavyweight class, plus heavyweight and featherweight tournaments, Bellator’s third edition of the “Summer Series” takes place over three events and is expected to conclude in August. Season 9 is expected to kick off in September.

Bellator 96 features a main event lightweight title fight between champion Michael Chandler and tournament winner Dave Jansen.

Bellator’s first season on Spike TV saw a huge uptick in ratings. Season 8 events drew an average audience of 861,000 viewers, live or via same-day DVR. The previous season on MTV2 averaged just 162,000.

For the latest on Bellator 96, stay tuned to the MMA Rumors section of the site.

(Pictured: Michael Chandler)

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