The MMA Beat: Episode 197

On today’s episode, we’ll discuss Bellator’s big week, from the announced DAZN streaming distribution deal to the welterweight grand prix and everything in between. We’ll look ahead to “future” UFC 226 headlines, the slew of MMA retirements announced and so much more.

Watch “The MMA Beat” live today at 12 p.m. ET / 9 a.m. PT / 5 p.m. GMT.


  1. Love Luke as the host, especially how he individually directs the questions. Danny crushed it, I think Luke is helping pull him out of his shell a bit. Shaun also did great! Best episode in a while.

  2. Shaun Al-Shatti is excellent. Have him on here more often! These three have incredible chemistry. Not the biggest Luke Thomas fan, but on this episode of the beat he really shined. Glad Helwani is bringing national recognition to MMA at ESPN, and now more people also get to shine at MMA Fighting. WIN WIN.

  3. First thing: no Ariel, no problem…this show is better than his new one by a long shot.
    Second: MMA in general has gotten too expensive. Married with 3 kids here…I'm back to staying off the Internet and watching bootlegs. It's like the 2000s all over again.

  4. Maybe it's a physical impossibility, but I'd like to see Shaun Al Shatti on the show more often. He's definitely good for the show. Also, what about Mindenhall; did he quit the show, too?

  5. Great episode. Shaun Al-Shatti seems excellent every time I encounter his content – insightful, eloquent, and cleverly direct while deferentially cognizant. I'd like to see more of him somehow.

    Marc Raimondi deserves more opportunity too, IMO – he's also got eloquent quality insight and opinion at the ready.

    Danny Segura does a great job and I'm happy for his apparently elevated status. He seemed a little threatened by Shaun in this episode, which I can appreciate, given the still settling shake-up in the wake of Ariel's departure. Well qualified guys have been waiting in the wings. I'm confident that he will mature coherently into his new positions in the short-medium term.

    I also love Chuck’s distinct, quality sensibilities. I’d like to see more of him too. I find the things he says insightfully mature and respectful.. often with a twinkle in his eye. He seems mindful of not wasting the audience’s time with redundancy and averse to grasping for mic time.

    Luke's doing a great job. I think he will lead things in more intelligently innovative directions that add apt value while avoiding tediously tone deaf awkwardness.

    Not necessarily switching to Twitter is not even a good idea, it's just "avoiding tediously tone deaf awkwardness". I watch YouTube on TV and had to engage various pieces of external equipment and additional software for an inferior experience so that the "prestige" of Twitter could be invoked?!?!

    I enjoy Ariel's coverage and think he does a thoroughly significant job in his way. I watch just about everything he puts out. His switch to ESPN for it's prestige means..something, I guess, for now… It's all around more awkward to access his content via the new modalities though I'm making some of those efforts, for now. I'll probably get ESPN+, but…I can't see how he made a legitimately good, sustainably viable, move up for his career as top MMA journalist. Maybe he'll get an opportunity to switch to covering basketball on ESPN – isn't that what he really always wanted?

  6. Ariel is an expert at the relationships and drama between fighters and organizations. Luke Thomas is an expert in MMA fighting! I love the new direction this channel is taking! Luke will talk about important and controversial items that need discussing but his focus is on talking about fights and matchup's. Ariel is the polar opposite he lives in the Drama universe and will even instigate drama where none may even exist and Ariel just briefly will talk about fights and potential matchups.

  7. I can't wait for the World Cup to be finished because I give no shits about soccer. Most viewers of this show I would imagine are here for MMA talk. Enough with the Soccer bs.

  8. Lets not forget Hendricks was robbed vs GSP and GSP did roids too….

    GSP disappeared with USADA but came back after getting swoll….

  9. unlike Danny THE BLAND Segura, Shaun at least has an opinion, he doesn't state the obvious like the BLAND BOY, my panel of choice would be Luke, Shaun, Chuck and Marc, but he seems always too busy for these panels

  10. ugh – the espn set suuuucks (sorry ariel but it's dark, cramped and not "inviting") and these guys on MMAfightingonSBN are just sooooooooo ……….. "meh"

  11. I'm a bigger fan of this show with Luke leading it and Im also a much bigger fan of the MMA hour with him taking that over as well. I get that there are a lot of ppl who enjoy listening to helwani..I personally dont, there is something very cringe-worthy about the guy. Thomas is someone I can watch, I never sat through an MMA hr with Helwani but I'll start watching/listening to it now.

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