BET to retire 'The Game' after seasons 8 and 9

"The Game" will end its run on BET either in 2015 or 2016. CREDIT: BET

Credit: Rodney Ho

Credit: Rodney Ho

"The Game" will end its run on BET either in 2015 or 2016. CREDIT: BET

BET, which brought "The Game" back from the dead in 2011, is retiring its biggest hit after two more seasons.

The network is currently taping seasons 8 and 9 in Atlanta.

The show was one of the earliest ones to take advantage of social media and an online campaign to bring the show back helped BET's decision-making to do so.

This move comes on the heels of ending its companion series 'Let's Stay Together." (Details here.)

In a statement, BET did not say how many episodes each season will encompass or when the show will technically end.

All good things must come to an end and after celebrating four successful seasons of THE GAME on BET, the Network has announced production is underway on the show's final two seasons. In January 2011 the cult following of The Game proved that the show was a fan favorite with 7.7 million viewers for its premiere debut on BET. With seasons eight and nine, we're excited to end on a high note by giving Sabers fans a chance to bid farewell to their favorite players on and off the field.

The show's ratings have fallen sharply from that huge beginning but is still a major hit for BET. Overnight ratings have hovered around 2.5 million viewers the most recent season with another million or so with DVR usage.

The comedy began on the CW in 2006 as a spinoff of "Girlfriends." It aired for three seasons and was cancelled in 2009. In 2010, BET announced it was resurrecting the show and it came back in early 2011.

The original series featured Tia Mowry, who left after season 5. Brandy Norwood was one of the later additions to the show.

In an interview with, creator Mara Brock Akil said she is proud of how she was able to transform the show to a single-camera dramedy on BET from the more traditional multi-camera sitcom set up over at the CW. Some fans didn't like the changes but many stuck with it.

Here is an excerpt of her comments:

Its look, its tone, its approach, the characters' development — that, yes, we were a half-hour comedy but we used our moments to deepen the characters. We also offered drama in a half-hour space. And that was my own personal desire, but it was also reflective of what the audience has been wanting, which is more well-rounded, deeper, richer, layered characters, and they got that in The Game.