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NBC Sports Network dramatically expands ‘Fight Night’ boxing series, adds network TV bouts

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Heavyweight Bryant Jennings (R) has helped build his reputation on the NBC Sports Network (Getty)

The NBC Sports Network announced that it would broadcast up to 16 boxing shows during the 2013-14 television season and would put one show, on Dec. 22 of this year, onto NBC. In addition, there will be up to two shows a year on NBC.

The "Fight Night" series was the brainchild of promoters Kathy Duva and Russell Peltz. Its premise was to pit evenly matched fighters -- particularly heavyweights -- in bouts which could go either way.

NBC will take one show, on Dec. 22 from 4-6 p.m. ET, marking a return to boxing. Two other shows will also appear on NBC, though those dates have yet to be announced. Jon Miller, the president of programming for NBC Sports and the NBC Sports Network, was bullish on the show's future.

The new contract calls for up to 16 shows, with a minimum of six.

"Fight Night has been a tremendous success," Miller said. "The unique approach to have multiple promoters competing to put fights on the NBC Sports Network has allowed us to produce compelling match-ups and incredibly exciting shows. NBC is committed to the property and we are looking forward to expanding the series."

The first dates for the series in 2013 will be Jan. 19 and March 9, both from 9-11 p.m. ET.

"This series is the best thing that has happened to boxing in years," Peltz said.

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