Super Fight League

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Super Fight League
Type Private
Industry Mixed martial arts promotion
Founded 2012
Founders Raj Kundra, Sanjay Dutt
Headquarters Mumbai, India
Key people Raj Kundra (Chairman), Daniel Isaac (CEO), Mary Kom (Brand Ambassador)
Parent Super Fight Promotions Pvt. Ltd
Website [1]

The Super Fight League, or SFL, is an India based mixed martial arts promotion.[1] The organization was formed in 2012 by Sanjay Dutt and Raj Kundra.[2] The SFL is the first MMA promotion based in India. SFL events have been shown on Colors[3] and Neo Prime in India, but now all events can be seen live on ESPN Star Sports in the country from March 29, 2013[4] and on YouTube live worldwide due to a 3-year contract between the promotion and the website.[5]

It is currently sponsored by PACL India Limited (Pearls) and thus officially known as Pearls Super Fight League.

History[edit]

The SFL was founded by celebrity entrepreneur IPL cricket team owner Raj Kundra and Bollywood megastar Sanjay Dutt in January 2012. Its intent is giving Indian mixed martial artists a platform to compete and grow in its home country whilst bringing in talented fighters from different parts of the world. They launched their first event on March 11, 2012, which was headlined by Bob 'The Beast' Sapp and James 'The Colossus' Thompson.[6][7]

On January 1, 2012, Ken Pavia was named CEO of the Super Fight League. He was asked by Kundra personally to become CEO of the SFL, with Pavia saying in an interview "Raj Kundra believes he needed experienced in each department of his organization and has put together the most impressive team that I have seen in 10 years in this sport".[8]

On February 27, the SFL announced that they had signed Todd Duffee, Trevor Prangley, Baga Agaev,[9] Paul Kelly, Xavier Foupa-Pokam and Lena Ovchynnikova to four fight exclusive contracts.[10]

On June 23, the SFL announced that they had signed Jeff Monson, Satoshi Ishii, Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou, and Michael Page.[11][12]

It was announced by the Fight Network that they will show all of the SFL's events on Canadian TV.[13]

In September 2012 Pavia resigned his position as the CEO of the SFL citing "family reasons." Fighters Only magazine reported that his mother had cancer and he was expecting his first child at the age of 46.[14]

The SFL made three announcements on September 24, 2012. The first was a strategic alliance between themselves and Invicta Fighting Championships, which aims to bring the best Indian female fighters to Invicta, whilst Invicta will aim to send world class female mixed martial artists to the Super Fight League.[15]

The second announcement was the Friday Night Fight Nights. From October 12, the SFL will hold an event every Friday in a specially designed arena in Mumbai in front of an exclusive invitation only audience. This will replace the original model of holding arena events once aimed one a month. Programming will last for three hours each week with weigh-ins, live fights and interviews from Bollywood cage side guests. There will be 7 fights in total each event, with 1 of them being a female bout. It will air live on Neo Prime in India and on their YouTube page for the rest of the world.[16]

The final announcement was introducing Indian Olympic Female Boxing Bronze Medallist Mary Kom as the SFL's brand ambassador.[17]

At SFL 13: Night of Champions, the Super Fight League will reward 5 titles in the men's and women's division.[18]

Launching on 4 December 2012, the Super Fight League announces a strategic partnership Provogue to set up a new company to jointly market all merchandise for SFL. The company has been named Pro SFL and the first product to hit the market is the New Deodorant Range ‘Aspire, Inspire and Desire.[19][20]

At the start of 2013, the SFL partnered with Indian news outlet DNA to promote women to get into martial arts and ran self-defence courses throughout Mumbai during mid-January as a result from the 2012 Delhi gang rape case that happened just weeks prior.[21]

The SFL signed a new TV deal with ESPN Star Sport in India for all events to be shown live for the next five years, starting with SFL 14 on 29 March 2013.[4]

On April 15, it was announced that the SFL has penned a three-year title sponsorship with real estate company PACL India Limited (Pearls).[22]

The SFL will be undergoing another change from August, 2013. It will go from hosting fortnightly events, to returning to a weekly format comprising four fights a night as appose to their usual seven. The promotion will also be shifting venue. A new arena is being constructed at the Filmalaya Stuidos in Andheri that will have a capacity of 800 people as compared to the 250-seater set-up. "Changing the format of the show has been a collective decision of our telecast partner and myself. Making the format regular but shorter gives a stronger connect," said Raj Kundra, founder of the SFL.[23]

SFL Challengers[edit]

On August 5, the SFL aired their reality show SFL Challengers.[24] Similar to the Ultimate Fighter,[25] the show will take 8 male and 8 female[26] up-and-coming Indian mixed martial artists, place them in the same house as each other whilst they compete to become the winner of the show.[27] Every alternate episode has 2 fights where 2 fighters (male and female) graduate to the next round whereas the other two have to leave the camp.[28] The show will go for 50 days and the fighters will also be given tasks each week, as well as being trained by some of the best international trainers available. The winner will receive 20 lakhs (approx. $36000/£23000) and a 3-year contract worth 25 lakhs with the SFL. It will air on Neo Prime at 9pm[29] and Zoom TV at 10pm every weekend. Each episode will also become available to watch from YouTube after they are shown on television.[30] The inaugural season was won by Kario Isaac Maheo and Manjit Kolekar.

Fantasy Game[edit]

The SFL MMA Fantasy game is a simple game that fans can play each week predicting the outcome of every fight. With scores being tracked on a leader board, players will win weekly prizes for accurate predictions and the player with the most points will win a bumper jackpot prize at the end of the year. Each week, players simply choose who they think will win each fight and if the correct winner is selected, players can earn points for choosing the correct method of victory and finishing round.[31]

Rules[edit]

SFL's current rules[32] are based upon the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts that were originally established by the New Jersey State Athletic Control Board and modified by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.[33] The Association of Mixed Martial Arts in India (AMMAI) are responsible for overseeing MMA promotions in India that are following these rules.

Cage[edit]

SFL uses a structure called the 'O'Zone. The 'O'Zone is a circular cage of chain-link fence that has been coated in black vinyl. The height of the fence varies between 5 feet 6 inches (1.68 m) and 5 feet 8 inches (1.73 m), is 30 feet (9.1 m) in diameter and sits atop a 4 feet (1.2 m) platform. There are two gates on opposite sides of the cage to allow for people to enter and leave the cage.[34]

Champions[edit]

Men's Division[edit]

Division Upper weight limit Champion Since Title Defenses
Heavyweight 265 lb (120 kg; 18.9 st)
Light Heavyweight 240 lb (110 kg; 17 st)
Middleweight 185 lb (84 kg; 13.2 st) France Xavier Foupa-Pokam March 29, 2011 (SFL 14) 0
Welterweight 170 lb (77 kg; 12 st) India Pawan Maan Singh October 26, 2013 (SFL 33) 0
Lightweight 155 lb (70 kg; 11.1 st) India Pawan Maan Singh August 17, 2013 (SFL 22) 0
Featherweight 145 lb (66 kg; 10.4 st) Vacant N/A
Bantamweight 135 lb (61 kg; 9.6 st) United States Tom McKenna May 10, 2011 (SFL 17)
Flyweight 125 lb (57 kg; 8.9 st) Vacant 0

Women's Divisions[edit]

Division Upper weight limit Champion Since Title Defenses
Featherweight 145 lb (66 kg; 10.4 st) Vacant 0
Bantamweight 135 lb (61 kg; 9.6 st) Vacant 0
Flyweight 125 lb (57 kg; 8.9 st) Vacant 0
Strawweight 115 lb (52 kg; 8.2 st) Vacant 0

Events[edit]

Event Date Location TV Channel
SFL 32-33 October 26, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 16 October 15, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 30-31 October 12, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL 28-29 September 28, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 15 September 21, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 26-27 September 14, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 14 September 7, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 24-25 August 31, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL 22-23 August 17, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 13 August 5, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 20-21 August 3, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 12 July 31, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL Contenders 11 July 26, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 19 June 7, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 10 June 4, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL Contenders 9 May 31, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL Contenders 8 May 27, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 18 May 24, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 7 May 18, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 17 May 10, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 6 April 30, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 16 April 26, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 5 April 17, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 15 April 12, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 4 April 5, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 14 March 29, 2013 India Mumbai, India Star Sports
SFL Contenders 3 March 17, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL Contenders 2 March 8, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL Contenders 1 February 22, 2013 India Nasik, India Un-televised
SFL 13 December 14, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 12 December 7, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 11 November 30, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 10 November 23, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 9 November 16, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 8 November 9, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 7 November 2, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 6 October 26, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 5 October 19, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 4 October 12, 2012 India Mumbai, India Neo Prime
SFL 3 May 6, 2012 India New Delhi, India Colors
SFL 2 April 7, 2012 India Chandigarh, India Colors
SFL 1 March 11, 2012 India Mumbai, India Colors

[35]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "The Official Website of the Super Fight League (SFL)". Super Fight League. Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  2. ^ Raj Kundra & Sanjay Dutt announce India's first Super Fight League (SFL). adcombat.com (2012-01-16). Retrieved on 2012-01-26.[dead link]
  3. ^ "Super Fight League signs TV rights with Colors". Times of India.com. Retrieved March 9, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b "ESS acquires Super Fight League broadcast rights for 5 years". Indiantelevision.com. Retrieved March 13, 2013. 
  5. ^ "India's Super Fight League announces YouTube stream for Sapp-Thompson event". MMA Junkie.com. Retrieved February 13, 2012. 
  6. ^ "Super Fight League to kick start in March". Daily News & Analysis. January 17, 2012. Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  7. ^ Slack, Jack. (2012-01-16) Asian MMA Update: Honorio Banario Steps In For Eric Kelly At ONE FC 2, James Thompson vs. Bob Sapp In India. Bloody Elbow. Retrieved on 2012-01-26.[dead link]
  8. ^ De Sourza, Wesley (February 6, 2012). "Exclusive interview with Super Fight League CEO Ken Pavia". ProMMANow.com. Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  9. ^ "India's Super Fight League signs Todd Duffee, Trevor Prangley, Baga Agaev". MMAJunkie.com. February 28, 2012. Retrieved February 27, 2012. 
  10. ^ "Super Fight League announces the signing of Paul Kelly, Professor X, and Lena Ochynnikova". ProMMANow.com. February 28, 2012. Retrieved February 28, 2012. 
  11. ^ Devlin, Craig (June 25, 2012). "Super Fight League signs, Ishii, Monson and Sokoudjou to exclusive deals". FullMount.co.uk. Retrieved June 25, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Super Fight League add four more fighters to their growing roster". TheFightLounge.co.uk. June 25, 2012. Retrieved June 25, 2012. 
  13. ^ "Fight Network Partners with Super Fight League". http://fightnetwork.com. July 12, 2012. Retrieved July 12, 2012. 
  14. ^ "SFL CHANGING BUSINESS MODEL IN WAKE OF PAVIA'S DEPARTURE". fightersonlymag.com. September 26, 2012. Retrieved September 12, 2012. 
  15. ^ "Super Fight League to Develop Women's MMA Talent". mmapundit.co.uk. September 24, 2012. Retrieved September 24, 2012. 
  16. ^ "Super Fight League announces Friday Night Fight Nights". mmainterplay.com. September 24, 2012. Retrieved September 24, 2012. 
  17. ^ "Mary Kom brand ambassador of Raj Kundra's SFL". newstrackindia.com. September 24, 2012. Retrieved September 24, 2012. 
  18. ^ "Super Fight League Returns with Another Edition of Friday Fight Nights and Get Social Contest". MMAWeekly.com. November 26, 2012. Retrieved November 14, 2012. 
  19. ^ "Super Fight League announces a strategic partnership with Provogue". indiansportsnews.com. December 6, 2012. Retrieved December 6, 2012. 
  20. ^ "Provogue sews up jt venture with Raj Kundra’s SFL". TheHinduBusinessLine.com. December 11, 2012. Retrieved December 4, 2012. 
  21. ^ "Self-defence camp packs a punch". DNAIndia.com. January 12, 2013. Retrieved January 12, 2013. 
  22. ^ "Super Fight League agrees three-year title sponsorship". sportspromedia.com. Retrieved April 15, 2013. 
  23. ^ "SFL to get a makeover". timesofindia.com. Retrieved June 5, 2013. 
  24. ^ "Shilpa Shetty back in front of camera". HindustanTimes.com. July 15, 2012. Retrieved July 15, 2012. 
  25. ^ Fletcher, Daniel (August 2, 2012). "SFL (Super Fight League) Set to Host Reality TV show: The Indian TUF!". FightSportAsia.com. Retrieved August 1, 2012. 
  26. ^ "RAJ KUNDRA, SANJAY DUTT LAUNCH CHALLENGERS HUNT". IndiaBlooms.com. July 15, 2012. Retrieved July 15, 2012. 
  27. ^ "SFL Challengers - Bollywood Meets TUF 'When He Gets Hurt, My Heart Cries': Fan's Look". Sports.Yahoo.com. July 31, 2012. Retrieved July 30, 2012. 
  28. ^ "Super Fight League's Answer to The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) to Air Next Month in India". MMAMania.com. July 31, 2012. Retrieved July 25, 2012. 
  29. ^ "Neo Prime to air action reality show SFL Challengers". IndianTelevision.com. July 19, 2012. Retrieved July 18, 2012. 
  30. ^ "Promoter Ken Pavia clears the air on the future of the Super Fight League (MMAmania exclusive)". IndianTelevision.com. August 2, 2012. Retrieved August 1, 2012. 
  31. ^ "SFL CONFIRMS CARD FOR THIS FRIDAY'S FREE STREAM". fightersonlymag.com. Retrieved October 11, 2012. 
  32. ^ "Unified rules and other important regulations of mixed martial arts". Super Fight League. Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  33. ^ "NSAC Regulations: CHAPTER 467 - UNARMED COMBAT". Nevada State Athletic Commission. Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  34. ^ "The 'O'Zone". Super Fight League. Retrieved February 8, 2012. 
  35. ^ "SUPER FIGHT LEAGUE". Sherdog.com. Retrieved April 18, 2012. 

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