ShowtimeReaches New Deal With MMA Organization Strikeforce

Showtime and
Strikeforce have agreed to a new broadcast deal that keeps the MMA outfit on the premium

Under the new
agreement, Showtime will produce and televise up to eight live events.
Undercard fights will be televised on Showtime Extreme.

The new deal kicks
off during the network's Free Preview Weekend, Saturday, Jan. 7 at 10 p.m., as Luke Rockhold defends his middleweight
title against Keith Jardine at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.

"This exciting
announcement could not have come at a better time," said Stephen Espinoza,
executive VP and GM of Showtime Sports. "During our nationwide Free Preview
Weekend a whole new crop of MMA fans will have the
opportunity to sample the Strikeforce brand free of charge."

Dana White,
president of UFC (which owns Strikeforce) added: "We're excited
about this renewal with Showtime and I expect to put on some big Strikeforce
events next year... I never thought I would say this, but I am very much
looking forward to building Strikeforce and working very closely with

Melendez vs. Masvidal
airs live on Showtime Dec. 17, at 10:30
p.m. ET/PT (delayed on West Coast).