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UFC® Adds Featherweight and Bantamweight Divisions, Inks Deal With VERSUS To AIr Four Fights In 2011

In a media conference call on October 28th, Ultimate Fighting Championship® President Dana White announced the UFC is adding two new championship divisions at bantamweight (135lbs.) and featherweight (145lbs.), while also announcing a new television deal with the VERSUS Network to air four UFC fights in 2011.

“As the UFC continues to evolve and grow globally, we want to be able to give fans title fights in every weight division,” said White. “This is a big day for the sport and the athletes who will have the opportunity to fight on the biggest stage in the world.”

The two new divisions feature WEC featherweight champion ?, who will now be recognized as the reigning UFC featherweight champion, and WEC bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz. White confirmed that the winner of the Dec. 16 lightweight title fight between WEC champion Ben Henderson and top contender Anthony Pettis live on VERSUS will take on the winner of the UFC 125 main event title bout between champion Frankie Edgar and Gray Maynard. This upcoming fight will serve as a UFC lightweight title unification bout to be held next year.

White also stated the UFC is expanding its presence on the VERSUS Network in 2011, and will increase its number of UFC events from two to four per year. Versus is scheduled to air the two remaining live WEC events in 2010 on Nov. 11 and Dec. 16. The Nov. 11 event in Las Vegas will feature “The California Kid” Urijah Faber’s debut at bantamweight as he takes on Takeya Mizugaki, while the Dec. 16 event in Glendale, Ariz. will feature Henderson-Pettis and a bantamweight title clash between Dominick Cruz and challenger Scott Jorgensen with the winner becoming the new UFC bantamweight champion.

“We have a great relationship with the VERSUS network, and we look forward to working with them to give UFC fans even more free fights in 2011,” said White.

Ultimate Fighting Championship® – www.ufc.com
Owned and operated by Zuffa, LLC, and headquartered in Las Vegas, Nev., UFC® produces over twelve UFC live Pay-Per-View events annually and 30 live arena events around the world. UFC programming is distributed in the United States on Viacom, Inc.’s Spike TV and on Comcast, Inc.’s Versus network. UFC content is distributed commercially through Joe Hand Promotions in the U.S. and Canadastar in Canada. Globally, UFC programming is broadcast in over 147 countries and territories, reaching 430 million homes worldwide, in 19 different languages. Ancillary businesses now include UFC.com with over 5 million unique visitors per month, the best-selling UFC “Undisputed” videogame franchise distributed by THQ, UFC Gym™, UFC Fight Club affinity program, UFC Fan Expo™ festivals, branded apparel, trading cards, articulated action figures and other media including best-selling DVDs and a U.S. bimonthly magazine.

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