Jon Anik's newfound role in the UFC has become a little clearer. According to a press release sent out Friday morning, the former ESPN anchor will primarily fulfill play-by-play duties for all FX and FUEL TV broadcasted UFC events. UFC officials have yet to decide upon a color commentator.
In addition, Anik will serve as host of the revamped "The Ultimate Fighter" series scheduled for broadcast on FX. Lastly, he will take the reins as host of the UFC's new magazine-style show, dubbed "Ultimate Insider", which is slated to premiere on FUEL TV in early January 2012.
"Jon Anik has been a top tier talent at ESPN for a number of years and I've made it a priority to bring him over to the UFC as we start our new partnership with FOX," UFC President Dana White said. "It's critical to seek out the best talent in the business as our company continues to grow."
Anik has worked as a combat sports analyst for ESPN since 2006 and is predominantly known as the host of "MMA Live". The 33-year-old Boston native has also ventured off into various play-by-play duties in his five years with the network, including college football and 2010 WBC heavyweight title fight between Shannon Briggs and Vitali Klitschko.
"The UFC is one of the strongest brands in sports, and in my opinion, it's the greatest sport in the world," Anik said. "The product speaks for itself. More frequently than any other sport, the UFC delivers. I had the chance to be on the road at UFC events when I was with ESPN and what separates the UFC from other sports is that it prides itself on being hands-on and fan-friendly."
"I look forward to helping play a small role in bringing the UFC to as many people across the world as possible. I'm really excited to a part of an organization that is filled with quality people who are the best in the world at what they do."