Mixed Martial Arts is one of the fastest growing sports in the world, so it comes as no surprise that another promotion is throwing its hat in the octagon to compete with established organizations like the UFC and Bellator. If you want to place a wager on MMA fights, check out our Sports betting lines for MMA matches.
Combate Americas recently announced that their organization will become the first Latino MMA promotion to have its fights broadcast on ESPN, which is a big deal considering well established organizations haven’t been able to get their fights televised live by the World Leader in Sports.’
Combate Americas’ first televised event, which has been dubbed “Combate Clasico” is scheduled to air on July 27 from the Mana Wynwood in Miami. The event will be live-streamed on the ESPN app and ESPN 3. It is scheduled to begin at 7 PM. ET.
Campbell McLaren, a UFC co-founder and CEO of Combate Americas, recently told The Sporting News that he was thrilled to collaborate with ESPN for Combate Clasico. McLaren added that Combate Clasico will be the MMA version of soccer’s El Clasico, which features Real Madrid Football Club and FC Barcelona.
According to McLaren, fighters from Barcelona will face off against fighters from Madrid in the main event of the competition.
In addition to being broadcast in English in the United States, Combate Clasico will also be broadcast live on ESPN in Latin America. The 10 fight card will feature Tommy Aaron (4-2) from Barcelona against Javier Fuentes (9-4) from Madrid in a catch weight fight at 160 pounds.
Combate Clasico is billed as a weeklong celebration of sports and entertainment and will feature concerts, parties, and other interactive events that fans will enjoy. The festivities will start with a friendly game between European clubs Juventus and Paris Saint-Germain, which will take place at the Hard Rock Stadium in Miami Gardens on July 26.
On the 27th of July, a friendly El Clasico will take place when Barcelona and Real Madrid play each other at the Hard Rock Stadium as well.
Combate Americas shares the same origin as Bellator. It was pitched as an MMA promotion to serve the Latino American audience. While Bellator quickly changed its strategy after leaving ESPN Deportes, Combate Americas stuck with its business model and has become very popular in Mexico, averaging 4 million viewers per week. Despite their success in Mexico, Combate Americas still faces a tough challenge in the U.S. because the UFC has cornered most of the U.S. market and have most of the best MMA fighters signed.
McLaren and Combate Americas are hoping to increase their promotion’s exposure in the U.S., and hope they will be able to get some new fans by hitching their wagon to the popular soccer franchises because they always attract a huge following, especially in the Latino community.
McLaren is excited about the possibility of attracting more fans to his promotion thanks to the El Clasico, which will draw plenty of fans to Miami. Since the fans will already be there to watch the soccer match, the Combate Americas fighters will need to put on a hell of a show to keep the fans coming back for more. If they do, expect to see the promotion around for many years to come.