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Bellator signs Jimmy Smith to long-term deal

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According to a Feb. 13 report from CageRadio.com, Bellator MMA analyst Jimmy Smith has agreed to a long-term extension that will keep him with the promotion until at least 2018.

“I couldn’t be happier to know that the next half decade I’ll be able to continue calling Bellator home. The entire team at Bellator are really like family to me and to have seen this family/company grow the way it has since I came aboard is really incredible,” Smith said. “I’ve been with Bellator since the start of Season 2, and I’ve called almost 100 fights with the company over the last five years. Our partnership with Spike, the ratings, audience, sold out live events and most importantly the incredible fights, makes this a perfect situation for me.

"Having seen firsthand what’s happened over the last four years, I cannot wait to see what happens over the next five. I absolutely believe in Bjorn’s vision and in everything that Bellator, Spike and our family are doing. I’m just thrilled to be part of it long term."

Smith, a former MMA fighter, got a late start on the broadcasting game, but he proved to be a natural.

“I had no idea what to expect when I sat down, but Sean gave me a quick crash course in broadcasting, and I just took it from there,” Smith said. “From that point on, Sean and I began to build a chemistry together, and after calling fights all around the world together, we really developed a unique bond and comfort level with each other that I think transfers over to the broadcast. It was that chemistry that led Sean and I to Bellator.”

Smith has been with the Bellator team since 2010. Bellator CEO Bjorn Rebney said he knew from day one that Smith was the perfect man for the job.

“I called Jimmy early in 2010 about the possibility of joining the Bellator team,” Rebney said. “I was familiar with his work, but had never had an actual conversation with Jimmy. I brought up that we were doing a welterweight tournament in our second season, and before I could talk about who was fighting, Jimmy gave me a breakdown of every fighter in the tournament, who he thought was the favorite, and who I should keep my eye on.

"It was evident then this was the guy we needed, and the rest is history. The chemistry between Sean and Jimmy is magic. In almost every highlight we have in our collection, those are the two voices you hear. They are in the fabric of everything we do, and it’s great to have Jimmy on board with our family for the next five years.”

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