CBS's going out on a limb and giving the MMA a Saturday night prime-time spot while trying to endorse the sport sounded like a great idea. Until there were some problems with the planning. Did it really help the sport?
The main complication was that the main event with Kimbo Slice fighting James Thompson. First of all, Kimbo Slice, although entertaining, is still an unproven fighter new to the MMA that does not have any special skills on the ground whatsoever.
However, he did prove that he can get out of some situations on the ground Saturday. But the only time in his whole career he has had to use his skills was on Saturday for a few minutes.
You shouldn't have a fighter's third MMA fight as the main event.
James Thompson isn't the greatest of fighters either. He was coming into Saturday night after losing six of his last eight. A fighter that loses six of eight isn't too great. It wasn't the best fight for MMA enthusiasts, but it was more of a gimmick to have the "big bad street fighter" come in and fight.
CBS also did a terrible job with their time management and the sad thing was, there was a tape delay. Usual UFC and MMA fights perfectly fit into their two hour time slot. If it doesn't, they cut out some of the previews/introductions and the lesser important fights.
The two hours suddenly expanded into over two hours and forty-five minutes.
Their show did need some cuts, especially when practically each fighter in each fight (even the less important ones) had two introductions. They introduced the fighters while they walked slowly to the cage and then once more when they were in the cage.
They had a little too many introductions, a little too much commentary, and arguably, a little too much time allotted to the "cheerleaders." According to Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports, 70 minutes into the show there was only two minutes and 12 seconds of actual fighting.
Although there were some entertaining fights, poor time management, bad fight selection, and poor presentation all resulted from the experimental CBS Saturday Fight Night.
Photo by Rich Schultz, AP