Contender may move to HBO for its third season and focus on heavyweight boxers

ESPN will soon air The Contender Challenge, a series of fights between veterans from the US show and UK boxers. But a third season of the reality series is also apparently in the works, and it may involve two major changes.

The Contender 3 will leave ESPN and focus on heavyweight, not middleweight, fighters, Boxing Confidential reports. The site says “Boxingconfidential.com has learned the progam, which is headed up by reality series guru Mark Burnett and boxing and entertainment man Jeff Wald, may be changing channels. ESPN, which picked up the show after it left NBC after its premiere season, has an option to carry the program. But sources within the broadcasting world keep repeating to me hot and scalding rumors that Home Box Office is going to acquire the show.”

If that report is true, that’d be its third network in three seasons; the first season aired on HBO. Regardless, the show will apparently “switch to an all heavyweight format for its 2007 season,” which Boxing Confidential says is “hardly a secret.”

“The Contender” Leaving ESPN, HBO Bound! [Boxing Confidential]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.