It took three years for Bellator to do its second pay-per-view show, but based on talk by Bellator and Spike executives, it won't be that long of a wait for the third go-around.
"I think we were trending all night, we were No. 1 on Twitter all night," Bellator president Scott Coker said Saturday night after Bellator NYC. "This night had a lot of heat and was promoted extremely well. This was our first one, so we're excited to come back and do a pay-per-view maybe the beginning of next year and keep going. We're not going to just do it every month, but when we do this, there will be mega fights and big events just like this."
Coker speculated on either a return to Madison Square Garden or another major market for what would be the second pay-per-view event since he was put in control of the product.
"We'll be back to do something next year, whether it's here, or it could be Los Angeles, it could be Dallas, it could be the Bay Area, but that hasn't been decided yet,” Coker said.
Bellator was the single most-searched term on Google on Saturday in the U.S., although the volume of 100,000 searches as of midnight was closer to a figure that a UFC television show would do, and well below what a UFC pay-per-view show would do. Terms like Bellator, Brent Primus, Aaron Pico, Tito Ortiz and Michael Chandler were all among the top trends for the night on Twitter.
Bellator's only prior pay-per-view was in 2014, headlined by Quinton Jackson vs. Muhammed Lawal, which did a little more than 100,000 buys. This show was considerably deeper when it came to name talent and championship fights.
"This is a new line of business, our pay-per-view business" said Jon Slusser, the senior vice president of sports at Spike TV. "This is the first of many we'll be doing with all of our cable partners and pay-per-view partners in the U.S. and all over the world."
The night was filled with major upsets. In at least four of the six pay-per-view fights, the lesser known fighter won. The only real exception would be Neiman Gracie beating Dave Marfone in a swing fight that wasn't even scheduled for the pay-per-view. It's hard to say who would have been considered a bigger name between Chael Sonnen and Wanderlei Silva. Silva was a bigger name longer, but Sonnen has garnered more attention in recent times.
"I talked to some of the reporters," said Coker. "I asked, `What do you think, give me some predictions?’ I don't think anybody got it completely right."
"To be at the Garden, it was fantastic and amazing, it was unbelievable," he added. "It was definitely one of the biggest nights of my life to promote in Madison Square Garden, where Ali fought Frazier, and all the fights that have happened here."