According to an Aug. 12 tweet from world-renowned MMA fight industry executive Mike Afromowitz, the Combate Americas competition reality series reigned supreme at the 2014 Imagen Awards, winning the highly-coveted award for “Best Variety or Reality Series." Combate Americas became the first MMA fighting reality series to notch such an award.
The 29th annual Imagen Awards Show was held at the Beverly Hilton Hotel International in Beverly Hills, Calif., and Combate Americas was one of the biggest winners of the night. As far as MMA programming, Combate Americas shocked the world by becoming the first to win a major television award. In attendance to accept the award were UFC co-founder and Combate Americas head honcho Campbell McLaren, Gabriela Cocco Sanchez (Executive Producer, Bunim-Murray Productions), Margie Moreno (Executive Producer, mun2), Gloria Medel Solomons (Executive Producer, mun2), and Luisa Varona (Executive Producer, mun2).
To put it in perspective of how big an honor this is, The Ultimate Fighter has never notched a major television award in 19 seasons of production. Neither has Bellator's Fight Master or Mark Burnett's The Contender. That said, Combate Americas is clearly breaking the glass ceiling when it comes to MMA reality series fighting. Combate Americas put itself in rarefied air by winning for “Best Variety or Reality Series" at the 29th annual Imagen Awards Show.
The show, which was created by McLaren, airs on mun2. It has achieved massive success on a national and global level because if fills a much-needed gap in MMA programming. The UFC has often struggled to connect with Latino sports fans who are based in the United States, but Combate Americas bridged the gap nicely.
In the first season of Combate Americas, McLaren slowly eased the audience into MMA by featuring cameo appearances from UFC champion and Hall of Famer Royce Gracie, television star Estrella, former Miss Universe runner-up Cynthia Olavarria and Lucha Libre superstar Blue Demon, Jr. Reggaeton star Daddy Yankee also appeared as Combate Americas League Commissioner.