What Happened to Power Slap League?

Published on Mar 14, 2024, 7:42:01 AM

Power Slap, the slap fighting sensation that took the combat sports world by storm, had a brief but impactful journey. Let’s delve into the rise, fall, and peculiar twists of this unconventional league.

Origins and Notoriety

·       Founding: Power Slap emerged in 2022, founded by none other than Dana White, the chief executive officer of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). The concept was simple: contestants would slap each other in the face to win the coveted “Power Slap League” tournament.

·       Reality TV Show: The league gained notoriety through its reality television show, “Power Slap: Road to the Title.” The show premiered on TBS in the United States and internationally on Rumble. Contestants battled it out, palm against cheek, in a quest for supremacy.

The First Season and Controversy

·       Premiere Delay: The show was set to debut on January 11, 2023, but faced a one-week delay. Why? Dana White himself was caught on camera slapping his wife during a New Year’s Eve party in a Mexican nightclub. The controversy added an unexpected layer to the league’s narrative.

·       Viewership Struggles: Despite its unique premise, “Power Slap: Road to the Title” struggled to find its audience. Ratings consistently hovered around 250,000 viewers, a far cry from its professional wrestling lead-in program, AEW Dynamite, which drew nearly a million viewers.

The Fall and Cancellation

·       Low Ratings: On March 13, 2023, Warner Bros. Discovery and TBS representatives confirmed that the network would no longer air “Power Slap: Road to the Title.” The first-season finale had aired the week prior, and the decision was partly due to the show’s persistently low ratings.

·       White’s Assurance: Dana White, undeterred, assured fans that Power Slap would continue to hold events and produce content for Rumble. The slap-fighting spectacle wasn’t going down without a fight.

Rules of the Slap Arena

·       Licensed by Nevada State Athletic Commission: Power Slap adhered to rules similar to other slap fighting leagues. Here’s how it worked:

o   Coin Toss: To decide who goes first.

o   60-Second Slap: The first striker had 60 seconds to deliver an open-handed slap to the opponent.

o   Precision Matters: Slaps had to be below the eye but above the chin, with simultaneous hand-to-face contact.

o   No Flinching: Those being slapped couldn’t flinch, raise their shoulder, or tuck in their chins.

Legacy and Beyond

·       Season Two: The second season of “Road to the Title” began airing on Rumble in November 2023. The slap saga continued, albeit with a smaller audience.

·       Safety Measures: Amid concerns about brutality, the commission worked on improving safety measures. Power Slap remained an oddity, a blend of absurdity and raw physicality.

In the annals of sports history, Power Slap will forever be remembered as the league where faces met palms, and ratings wavered. Whether it’s a footnote or a cult classic, only time will tell. 

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