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BET ‘Slams’ into MMA, ‘Iron Ring’ Series Premiers 3/18



Monday, March 10th, 2008

BET ‘Slams’ into MMA, ‘Iron Ring’ Series Premiers 3/18

BET SLAMS INTO THE ARENA OF MIXED MARTIAL ARTS WITH NEW ORIGINAL SERIES IRON RING PREMIERING TUESDAY,

MARCH 18 AT 11 P.M. ET/PT

Teams Led by Floyd Mayweather, Ludacris, Nelly, T.I., Juelz Santana, Jim Jones and Lil Jon Battle it Out in the New Mixed Martial Arts Series

LOS ANGELES, CA — March 6, 2008 — Introducing celebrities from the worlds of hip-hop, sports and Hollywood to the competitive ranks of mixed martial arts (MMA), BET showcases a twist to this edgy format with its new original series IRON RING premiering Tuesday, March 18 at 11 p.m. ET/PT.

IRON RING, a 14 episode half-hour weekly series showcasing mixed martial arts, the fastest growing new sports format in entertainment, pairs celebrity team owners, trainers and fighters to produce some of the most compelling match-ups on television. Headlining the show is boxing champ Floyd Mayweather (with the assistance of hip hop star Rick Ross) managing the Money Mayweather Boys, along with hip-hop heavyweights Ludacris and Nelly representing Team Luda and Team Nelly (respectively); T.I. with the help of Big Kuntry, Young Dro, DJ Drama and Alpha Omega leading Team Grand Hustle; Juelz Santana and Jim Jones heading Dipset; and Lil Jon with the Head Busters.

“When I heard BET was bringing IRON RING to the air… I wanted to be involved in any way I could,” said team owner Ludacris. “…What people will get out of IRON RING is that it’s less about the man in the fight and more about the fight in the man.”

With $100,000 in prize money up for grabs, these skilled competitors go toe-to-toe in the IRON RING using the combined fighting techniques of jiu-jitsu, judo, karate, boxing, kickboxing, and wrestling. From competitive team tryouts and grueling practices to the final face-off at the live championship, IRON RING not only exposes the hardcore sport of mixed martial arts, but also uniquely explores the human element by providing insight into the lives of the fighters and coaches.

“With IRON RING, BET is delivering on our mission of providing a wide range of programming, while also creating a forum for black athletes to showcase their martial arts talent,” said Reginald Hudlin, President of Entertainment for BET. “Black fighters have a long and celebrated history in the sport of boxing, from Jack Johnson to Joe Louis to Muhammad Ali, and IRON RING extends that legacy to a new competition that adds diversity to the sport of mixed martial arts.”

IRON RING is produced by Zilo Live, Inc. in association with the Warrington Hudlin Organization. Executive Producers are Campbell McLaren and David Isaacs, originators of the popular Ultimate Fighting Championship® franchise, along with Warrington Hudlin, best known as the producer of the popular feature films House Party and Boomerang.

Integrated marketing partnerships include Sony Playstation’s “God of War,” Old Spice and Summit Entertainments film “Never Back Down” featuring Djimon Hounsou.

For up-to-the-minute and archival press information including releases and photographs, visit BET’s press-only Web site at www.bet.com/pr.

For show highlights and access to the exclusive IRON RING blog, visit www.bet.com/ironring


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