*UPDATE* Spike TV confirmed Friday that it will indeed televise the undercard fights for UFC 103: Franklin vs. Belfort on September 19th. However, contrary to the report published by the OC Register, Spike will air just one hour of uninterrupted coverage of the undercard with two fights guaranteed.
Those fights are Efrain Escudero versus Cole Miller which will be a match-up of previous winners of 'The Ultimate Fighter' and a middleweight slugfest featuring Tomasz Drwal and Drew McFedries.
Currently, the UFC 103 card is scheduled to feature eight undercard bouts. Spike TV's hour of coverage immediately prior to the 10pm EST/7 PST PPV broadcast will probably be enough to show between four and five fights depending on their length.
In a move that could be a breakthrough for the sport of mixed-martial arts, the UFC apparently will begin broadcasting the undercard fights of its pay-per-view events with UFC 103 on September 19th on Spike TV according to the Orange County Register.
As things are now, the unaired prelims or "dark bouts" as they are sometimes referred to as, only reach the air of a PPV when there is extra time in a PPV broadcast created by early fight stoppages. These days, the UFC generally puts on six or seven fights on the undercard and rarely do more than one or two of them reach the air.
This could be huge news not only for all fighters on the UFC roster, but for the sport in general as it will give added exposure to the sport's best. If this is indeed the case, showing the undercard fights with no commercial interruption on Spike as essentially the lead-in to the PPV broadcast, all parties included will benefit. We are talking the fans, the sport, the fighters and certainly the UFC and Spike.
We are still waiting to get official comment from the UFC, however, make no mistake that when we get that word, I will bring you the latest and greatest from the organization.