Thiago Alves. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
In a recent article on UFC.com, Thiago “Pitbull” Alves mentioned that he had a secret weapon for his upcoming title bout with champion Georges St. Pierre.
Alves said, “Fabio Holanda, who trained GSP for nearly two years, is here supporting my training and giving me a lot of details about his game; that was a great addition.”
According to a report on the official American Top Team website, Canadian MMA superstar Denis Kang has signed a 4 fight contract with the UFC.
American Top Team fighter Denis Kang just signed a 4 fight deal with the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Denis made a big name for himself in Japan and Korea fighting in the PRIDE and SpiritMC organizations, where he developed a huge following.
Denis will now be able to showcase his skills to a whole new audience who hasn’t had the chance to see this exciting fighter in action. Denis has always expressed a desire to fight in the UFC and we are pleased we were able to help him get this deal done. Denis will bring a lot of excitement to the 185lb division! Congrats Denis!
This is a solid signing for the UFC. Just two years ago, Kang was ranked in the top 5 of world middleweights before he suffered 3 losses in 4 fights. He has since bounced back with two straight wins against inferior competition. He is extremely well rounded and can finish a fight from anywhere.
Kang had negotiated before with the UFC, but could never come to terms as he always wanted the option to fight once a year for the SpiritMC promotion in Korea, honoring his family heritage. With expansion into South Korea being one of Zuffa’s assigned goals in the next year or two, this signing along with that of Dong Hyun Kim is very helpful. It might be the promised chance to still fight in South Korea eventually that convinced Kang to go ahead and sign with Zuffa this time.
Quinton Jackson. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
— Former UFC light heavyweight champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson’s pre-trial hearing, which was scheduled to take place today in California, has been postponed until Oct. 24 due to the Orange County chief prosecutor being unable to make it to today’s proceedings. In addition, a preliminary examination (when the prosecution presents the evidence to the jury) scheduled for Nov. 30 has been postponed to a later date. Jackson is facing two felonies and four misdemeanors following his high-speed chase with Costa Mesa on July 15. He has pleaded not guilty. If convicted, Jackson could face up to three years in prison.
— After undergoing successful surgery to repair a partially torn ACL, Renato “Babalu” Sobral will once again to attempt to challenge Bobby Southworth for his Strikeforce light heavyweight title at a planned November 21 event in San Jose, California according to what Sobral’s manager, Richard Wilner, told our friends at MMA Junkie. Sobral and Southworth were originally slated to meet at “Strikeforce at the Mansion II” in September before both fighters were forced to withdraw from the bout due to separate knee injuries. The November show is also expected to feature Josh Thomson making the first defense of his Strikeforce lightweight title as well.
Chris Horodecki and Shad Lierley weigh-in for an IFL event in June 2007. Photo courtesy of the International Fight League.
The International Fight League earlier today announced details for their upcoming East Rutherford, NJ event, which will take place at the IZOD Center on April 4th.
Three title fights are scheduled to headline the card. IFL light heavyweight champion Vladimir Matyushenko will make his first title defense against New Jersey native Jamal Patterson. Popular welterweight champion and Xtreme Couture product Jay Hieron will attempt to keep his belt around his waist when he goes up against former U.S. Marine Mark Miller.
Upstart Shad Lierley, who made headlines after going toe-to-toe with lightweight sensation Chris Horodecki last year, will drop down to the featherweight division in exchange for a shot against current title holder Wagnney Fabiano, who submitted L.C. Davis this past December to grab the vacant belt.
Horodecki is also expected to return to action at the event, currently against an opponent yet to be named.
The nine-fight card will feature matchups between four different camps. Fighters from Renzo Gracie’s Academy will take on athletes from Midwest Combat while American Top Team will make it’s IFL debut against martial artists from the renowned Miletich Fighting Systems.
“I like the local feel of this card,? said IFL Vice President Bas Rutten. “?In addition to three outstanding championship bouts, featuring fighters from New York and New Jersey, you have Renzo Gracie?‘s camp, which was the champion last year, Midwest Combat, which features our top fighters from the Chicago area, and great battles with the Miletich camp and American Top Team, who we are very excited to have on board.?”
Miletich fighters Rory Markham and Mike Ciesnolevicz will go up against American Top Team’s Emyr Bussade and Lew Polley respectively. L.C. Davis will also likely compete for Pat Miletich as well.
A lightweight clash between Deividas Taurosevicius and Bart ?Palaszewski is the only announced battle between Renzo Gracie’s Academy and Midwest Combat as of right now. Skilled welterweight Delson Heleno will also represent Renzo Gracie on the card.
Good morning bitches! More coverage of last night’s UFC Fight Night to come later on this morning.
Calvancante and Aoki Set to Try Again; Masvidal Added to “Strikeforce At The Dome”
It seems like Gesias Calvancante and Shinya Aoki will finally meet at a K-1 show in Japan in March. American Top Team’s manager Richie Guerrero (who manages Calvancante as well) announced the matchup yesterday during an interview on TAGG Radio.
The two were originally set to face off at Yarennoka! on New Year’s Eve but Calvancante was forced to pull out of the fight after suffering a knee injury during training. The injury occurred on the same knee that he had knee surgery on this past fall.
Guerrero also revealed that lightweight contender Jorge Masvidal will be competing at the “Strikeforce At The Dome” show next month as well. Masvidal does have an opponent but the name was unable to be announced at the time.
Aleksander Expects April Fight With Barnett
Aleksander Emelianenko, who will be fighting in M-1 Global’s first U.S. show in April along with his brother Fedor, expects to take on former UFC heavyweight champion Josh Barnett.
Emelianenko made the announcement via his official website.
Fedor is expected to take on part-time K-1 kickboxer Semmy Schilt but Jeff Monson has also been rumored as a potential opponent. The show will most likely take place right outside of Chicago at the Allstate Arena in Rosemont, Illinois.
Touch of gloves to MMA Junkie for the find.
Frank Edgar Returns at UFC Fight Night 13
I missed it and I’m sure a lot of other people did but apparently UFC play-by-play announcer Mike Goldberg stated that Frankie Edgar would be part of the UFC’s next “Fight Night” in Denver, Colorado in April.
Edgar, who has not lost yet inside of the UFC, still remains undefeated in his professional mixed martial arts career as well. Edgar is coming off of a dominating performance over Spencer Fisher en route to a unanimous decision win at UFC 78.
Props to Combat Hooligans for catching that.
BodogFight has released the full card for it’s February 1st event in Las Vegas. The Sun is reporting that Brock Lesnar, win or lose, may be tapped to headline the UFC’s June show in London England due to his overseas popularity because of professional wrestling. Roger Gracie may be fighting Hidehiko Yoshida at Sengoku in March.
Fightlinker went live with The Low Blow last night, recapping UFC Fight Night 12. Hilarious.
Dorian Price grapples with Roman Mitichyan at The Ultimate Fighter 6 Finale. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship has possibly released ‘Ultimate Fighter 6’ contestant Dorian Price from his contract following his loss to Roman Mitichyan at The Ultimate Fighter 6 Finale last month.
The news comes from a report by Jason Perkins of MMA Fightline.
Price lost in his first fight on the show, being submitted by Matt Arroyo in what was also the first televised bout of the reality show’s season. Price was also involved in a controversial altercation when he chased and threatened a cameraman after asking to be left alone during taping.
The report also indicates that Price has signed on with White Chocolate Management and will be training with the American Top Team in Miami, FL for the immediate future.
Above is the latest from The Garv who discusses the newly signed Kimbo Slice-Tank Abbott fight and how dangerous Miami is. I’m guessing that Will Smith is full of crap.
UFC Announces Nakamura-Emerson
The UFC has announced that a lightweight bout between Keita Nakamura and former Ultimate Fighter cast member Rob Emerson for UFC 81: Breaking Point next month.
Nakamura has not fought since losing a unanimous decision to Drew Fickett at UFC Fight Night 9 in April of last year. Nakamura also dropped a decision in his UFC debut against Brock Larson at UFC Fight Night 7.
Fresh off of his second stint in jail, Emerson will be making his first appearance inside the Octagon since his infamous fight against Gray Maynard at The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale where he tapped out due to a rib injury and Maynard knocked himself out slamming Emerson to the ground.
While bout agreements have not yet been signed, both Cheick Kongo and Heath Herring are expected to face off in a heavyweight bout at UFC 82 in March according to a report from MMA Mania.
Juanito Ibarra, one of Kongo’s trainers, has stated that his client is already training in preparation for the bout:
“Kongo’s here at my house already getting ready for the fight,” said Ibarra. “This is going to be his year. Kongo’s got all the talent to be a heavyweight champion real soon, I truly believe that. Heath’s a tough opponent and this is going to be a big test.”
UFC Releases Radev and Hightower
No, there hasn’t been an official announcement by Dana White and company. Instead the news comes inadvertently from Ken Pavia’s journal about his dieting adventure with Luke Cummo via MMA Junkie:
The day needed a pick-me-up so I called UFC matchmaker Joe Silva to check the progress of my guys’ fights. He said he was still working on it but then informed me they would be releasing two of them, Jordan Radev and Richie Hightower.
Apparently Radev has already been booked to fight Hector Lombard at Cage Fighting Championship’s third event on February 15th in Sydney, Australia.
Ryan Bennett Memorial Fund Reminder
While there aren’t any items currently up for auction for the Ryan Bennett Memorial Fund, remember that you can always donate directly to the fund by visiting it’s official website.
Any fighters that are interested in donating items that can be auctioned off such as autographed pictures, shorts, gloves, or anything else should contact Randy Harris at firstname.lastname@example.org
Remember that all proceeds from the auctioned items go directly to the Ryan Bennett Memorial Fund.
Marcelo Garcia has joined American Top Team. MMA Junkie is reporting that UFC Fight Night 13 will most likely take place on April 2nd at a site yet to be determined in Colorado. The Nevada State Athletic Commission corrected the attendance and revenues stemming from UFC 79 yesterday. Scott White has a good piece on David Loiseau’s return. John Philapavage tries to revive Mirko Cro Cop’s career.
12-1 PM EST - TAGG Radio
1-3 PM EST - The Jordan Breen Show
2-3 PM EST - The Lights Out Show
3-5 PM EST - The Stephen Quadros Show
3-4 PM EST - The Fight Network Radio
9-10 PM EST - MMAWeekly’s Sound Off
11 PM EST - Knockout Radio
As you can see above, Chris Fries and The JDH of MMA News fame will premiere their “Lights Out Show” this afternoon on TAGG Radio at 2 PM EST.
Fightlinker also has the newest edition of The Low Blow out.
Interested in owning a UFC championship belt like the one above? How about the exact one above? Got $30,000 to spare? Well former UFC heavyweight champ Ricco Rodriguez is selling the title he won from Randy Couture at UFC 39 on eBay in hopes of raising money for a school Rodriguez will be opening down south.
Tim Sylvia calls Fedor a bad word
Former UFC heavyweight champion had some choice words for Fedor Emelianenko during a post-UFC 79 interview with Gary Herman of CBS Sports. When asked about Emelianenko, Sylvia stated that he feels the former PRIDE champ is ducking top competition:
“I think he’s being a (expletive),” said Sylvia. “I think Fedor is very good, but you have to fight the top level competitors all the time to keep that status, and he is just not doing that.”
According to Five Ounces of Pain, the bad word had something to do with a pussy, whatever that is…
WCO Releases Complete Card for “The Return”
The World Cagefighting Organization has released the complete card for WCO: The Return, which is set to take place January 12th at the San Diego Sports Arena.
The event is headlined by a main event between former UFC light heavyweights Renato “Babalu” Sobral and Vernon White and includes many other notable fighters competing as well. The full card is below:
Renato Sobral vs. Vernon White
Ricco Rodriguez vs. Mike Kyle
Mark Kerr vs. Rick Roufus
Jimmy Ambriz vs. Wesley Correira
Joe Riggs vs. Gustavo Machado
Virgil Zwicker vs. David Mejia
Davis Loiseau vs. Leopoldo Serao
Tiki Ghosn vs. J.J. Ambrose
Fabio Costa vs. Carlos Fuentes
Georgi Karakahyan vs. Armando Sanchez
Tony Sylvestor vs. Cain Velasquez
Touch of gloves to MMA Junkie for that find.
Sakara Joins American Top Team
Alessio Sakara has joined the ranks of ATT according to a statement made on the team’s official website:
To start off the new year, American Top Team is pleased to announce UFC fighter Alessio “Legionarius” Sakara has joined our team!
We are excited to have the opportunity to work with Alessio, who is known for his explosive stand up style of fighting. We look forward to working with Alessio and help him improve his overall mma game and take him to the top!
Sakara returns at UFC 80: Rapid Fire later this month when he takes on newcomer James Lee. The fight is expected to be Sakara’s last at 205 lbs as he has expressed plans to move down to the middleweight division following the fight.
We will have a brand new MMA on Tap Top 10 posted later today. Our rumors page has been updated. Randy Couture will be hosting a charity poker tournament at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas on January 12th. Couture, Jamie Gold, and Dean Cain are all expected to participate. Leland Rolling takes a look at what’s next for Chuck Liddell and Wanderlei Silva. A matchup between Jake Bostwick and John Phillips has been added to Cage Rage 25 according to The Fight Network.
The Nevada State Athletic Commission announced this afternoon that Ariel Gandulla has tested positive for the anabolic steroid Nandrolone.
The positive test stems from post-fight testing for WEC 31: Faber vs Curran on December 12th. Gandulla was submitted by WEC Light Heavyweight Champion Doug Marshall in less than a minute into their bout at the event.
Gandulla will now have twenty days to respond to the commission in terms of whether or not he would like to appeal the positive test.
Brad Pickett has been forced to pull of his upcoming fight against Ronnie Mann at Cage Rage 24 after breaking his arm during a recent training session at American Top Team in Miami, Florida over the weekend.
Pickett revealed that his arm was already damaged months before he broke it this past weekend:
“I had a bit of a problem with my arm for a few months now,” Pickett said. “I wasn’t too sure what it was. We thought I might have a small fracture [already] because it was quite sore. I ended up sparring on Saturday and blocked a high kick and broke it.”
Pickett is expected to be out of action for at least six weeks. A replacement opponent for Mann has not yet been found.
Cage Rage owner Andy Greer promised that Pickett would return to the promotion at some point next year in an official statement:
“[Brad] is the latest victim of a gruelling training regime,” Greer said. “Brad is understandably disappointed that he will miss the opportunity to fight. He wanted to take this opportunity to apologize to all his fans and wants to assure them that he will be back with a vengeance next year.”