Fight of the Day: Ellenberger vs. Light

From BodogFight’s “Costa Rica Combat” event in February 2007, here’s UFC newcomer and Team Quest product Jake Ellenberger facing current Wolfslair coach and recent Strikeforce signee Zach Light.

Report: BodogFight Nearly Dead

Photo by David M Singer.

BodogFight, the once promising mixed martial arts promotion founded by millionaire Calvin Ayre, seems to be on it’s last legs after suffering brutal financial losses in 2007.

The news comes from Adam Swift of MMA Payout, who found through Dave Meltzer’s recent print edition of Wrestling Observer that Ayre and company reportedly lost $38 million last year, despite holding three live events and a slew of tapings for their weekly shows on ION Network.

More from Swift:

Most of the company’s employees have been let go, there are no events planned (although they are sponsoring some smaller events), there is no new TV deal, and a recently proposed small budget (with the idea of slowly rebuilding) by Jeff Osborne was turned down.

Matt Lindland’s claims of the organization failing to pay their fighters and honor their contracts are starting to seem more and more legit these days. Despite being the promotion’s figurehead for some time now, Bodog welterweight champ Nick Thompson’s potential departure may be a sign of things to come as well.

Report: HCF Close to Inking Nick Thompson

Photo courtesy of Bodog Fight.

Current Bodog Fight welterweight champion Nick Thompson is reportedly close to signing with Alberta-based Hardcore Championship Fighting.

The news comes from a report by The Fight Network.

Thompson, a Minnesota Martial Arts Academy product, has won eleven straight fights since losing to Karo Parisyan in April 2006. He last defeated Fabricio Monteiro via unanimous decision at World Victory Road’s inaugural show titled “Sengoku” earlier this month.

It’s still unknown whether or not Thompson is now a free agent after fighting overseas. Thompson fought outside of Calvin Ayre’s project for the first time since October 2006.

Thompson’s potential signing comes just one week after Hardcore Championship Fighting CEO Keith Crawford announced that the promotion has been purchased. ProElite, the parent company of Elite Xtreme Combat is rumored as the potential buyer.

An official announcement regarding the purchase is expecting to come sometime before the organization’s next event in May.

Lindland Exposes Bodog Fight

Matt Lindland weighs-in for UFC 52: Couture vs Liddell II. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

We all now know that after almost a year of inactivity, former UFC middleweight title contender Matt Lindland will return to action inside the confines of a new but currently unknown mixed martial arts promotion after signing a multi-fight contract with the organization.

Speculation suggests popular clothing company Affliction, which had recently been rumored to have been in conflict with the Ultimate Fighting Championship after deciding to start their own promotion, is behind the deal as well as Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions.

However that’s only half the story. Why didn’t Lindland fight for months? Apparently Bodog Fight isn’t as innocent as they make themselves out to be…

From MMA Weekly:

“I lived up to my end of the bargain (with Bodog Fight),” Lindland said in a recent interview. “I haven’t fought since April, anticipating two more fights with Bodog. I was exclusive with them for that period of time. That’s why I hadn’t done any negotiations outside of that contract. I was upholding my end of the bargain and dealing with them with integrity and honesty. I was being forthright, but they weren’t doing such. It was very difficult.”

“I mean, I could go after Bodog Fight, but they have no assets,” Lindland continued. “They set up these shell companies and they’re not paying their fighters. They don’t honor their contracts. It was very disappointing.”

After realizing that he wouldn’t be fighting twice more before the end of his contract, Lindland asked to be bought out. That didn’t work either.

Bodog now just gets added to a list that includes the IFL, UFC, EliteXC, and the old PRIDE as organizations that fighters have accused of treating their fighters like shit. At the same token, there are many other fighters involved with those promotions that have nothing but positive things to say about them.

I guess at this point, we have to chalk it up to the experience a certain fighter has with an organization.

Sapp, Riggs Suffer Brutal Losses in the Dome

From tkduffy22 on Flickr.

Bob Sapp’s return to his home state of Washington didn’t go so well. The former NFL lineman and K-1 star was stopped by fellow kickboxer Jan Nortje in brutal fashion, stunning the 7,089 in attendance at the Tacoma Dome for last night’s Strikeforce and Bodog Fight co-promoted event.

After cutting Sapp with a series of stiff left jabs in the opening moments of the fight, Nortje followed up with a barrage of punches while his opponent was up against the cage. Seconds later, Sapp was on the receiving end of one final left hook that sent him crumpling to the canvas and forced the referee to wave off the proceedings.

The win was Nortje’s first in mixed martial arts since Tadao Yasuda was forced to bow out of their December 2002 bout because of injury. After the fight, Nortje (2-5) expressed his desire to compete under the Strikeforce banner in the future.

“It wasn’t luck,” Nortje said. “I trained my ass off for this fight. I knew Sapp was one hell of a job to take on, but I did it. Thanks to Scott Coker and Strikeforce, I’m going to keep doing this. This feels nice. This feels good.“

A disappointed Sapp (9-3-1) revealed a potential hamstring injury that may have hampered his performance during a post-fight interview.

“My hamstring buckled and I wasn’t able to get back up,” Sapp said. “I tried to move around a lot but it wasn’t working. Unfortunately I just couldn’t get it done today.”

After a brief exchange on the feet, Cory Devela put veteran Joe Riggs on his back for good just two minutes into their middleweight bout with a swift judo throw. Immediately tapping out after he hit the mat, it was obvious that Riggs was in extreme pain from what appeared to be an unconfirmed lower back injury.

Although Devela landed two right hands flush to a downed and submitting Riggs, it was evident that the injury was the main cause behind the former UFC welterweight title contender being unable to stand up. A stretcher was called into the cage and Riggs was taken to nearby St. Joseph Medical Center where he remained overnight before being released earlier this morning.

Devela, now 8-1, noted that he hoped Riggs (27-10) would fully recover from the injury after the fight.

After a few minutes, I knew that I probably shouldn’t be standing with him,” Devela said. “He’s a hard-hitting guy and I had a better chance of tying up with him and beating him up that way. I hate to see when a fighter gets hurt like that so I hope he’s alright and comes back hard.”

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Masvidal Set to Continue Rise Against Healy


Jorge Masvidal throws a right hand at a downed Yves Edwards at BodogFight: Alvarez vs Lee in July 2007. Photo by David Singer.

It’s no secret anymore. Jorge Masvidal is one of the best young prospects in mixed martial arts.

After settling in with American Top Team close to five years ago, Masvidal quietly rose through the lightweight ranks, even picking up an impressive victory over current Ultimate Fighting Championship standout Joe Lauzon along the way.

Masvidal spent few years of his career fighting exclusively in the southeastern half of the United State before signing with a fledgling Bodog Fight promotion in 2006. After racking up two straight wins inside the Calvin Ayre-owned organization, Masvidal had his coming out party last summer, knocking veteran Yves Edwards unconscious with a devastating head kick.

“Looking back on it, that fight was huge for me,” Masvidal said during a recent interview session. “Yves was a such a big name and being able to get a win over someone as notable as him really jump-started my career. All of the hard work I’ve put in over the years paid off in that fight. Everything is falling into place now. This is actually one of the first fights where I’ve been the favorite going into it, one of the main attractions on the card. It feels good.”

Masvidal will now look to continue his winning ways later tonight at the Bodog Fight-sponsored “Strikeforce at the Dome” show, where he will take on hard-hitting Team Quest product Ryan Healy, who has won three of his last four.

“I’m really excited to get in there against Ryan,” Masvidal said. “I think this is going to be an entertaining fight because of the styles we bring to the table. We both like to stand and bang. Those kind of fights play right into my game. I’m comfortable anywhere the fight can go but I’m extremely comfortable standing.

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Masvidal ‘Game’ For Healy at Strikeforce

Jorge Masvidal throws a right hand at a downed Yves Edwards at BodogFight: Alvarez vs Lee in July 2007. Photo by David Singer.

TACOMA - Bodog Fight sensation Jorge “Gamebred” Masvidal (13-2) will take on former NCAA National Boxing Champion turned Matt Lindland protégé, “Diamond” Ryan Healy (9-2-1), in a 160 lb. limit catch weight mixed martial arts battle during Bodog Fight Presents: “Strikeforce At The Dome” at Tacoma, Washington’s Tacoma Dome on Saturday, February 23rd.

The 23-year-old Masvidal, a native of Miami, Florida, is looking to notch his eighth consecutive victory after stopping Brant Rose in just 50 seconds on December 11, 2007.

Three months prior to his last outing, Masvidal finished Matt Lee with a barrage of strikes in one round of action during Strikeforce’s inaugural event at the world famous Playboy Mansion in Beverly Hills, California on September 29, 2007. 

“Things are really starting to fall into place,” commented Masvidal on his surge that has him knocking on the door of a top ten ranking in the sport’s lightweight division.  His most impressive showing to date was his second round TKO of The Ultimate Fighter season 5 contender, Joe Lauzon, on April 30, 2005.

“A lot of other sports like boxing have amateur (ranks) so when you get to the pros you already know more or less what you’re doing,” explained Masvidal.  “For MMA, it’s different.  You’ve got to learn on the job.  So, it was just a matter of time before I put everything together.”

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Thompson Discusses Troyer Fight and More

BodogFight welterweight champion Nick Thompson discusses his successful title defense over John Troyer this past weekend as well as his thoughts on the differences and similarities between the top MMA promotions around the world with RawVegas. Jens Pulver, Dean Lister, Troy Mandaloniz, and Dave Terrell chime in with their take also.

Thompson Submits Troyer; Retains Title

Photo courtesy of BodogFight.

Nick “The Goat” Thompson continued his impressive winning ways Friday night as he overcame a brutal first couple of minutes to ultimately end up submitting opponent John Troyer and successfully retain his BodogFight welterweight title.

The lively crowd inside the Las Vegas Sport Center saw Thompson land two stiff jabs to start the main event off. Troyer was able to dodge another flurry and closed in on Thompson, who quickly became the victim of a highlight-reel slam that sent Thompson face-first into the canvas.

Thompson’s nose was immediately broken and blood began to flow onto the mat.

Troyer swiftly took Thompson’s back and then switched to attempt a rear naked choke after his tries for a rear naked choke weren’t working. A scramble allowed Thompson to move into top position, where he unleashed an effective ground and pound assault that bloodied Troyer.

With Troyer visibly fatigued, Thompson literally dragged his opponent to the middle of the ring and proceeded to deal out even more punishment. Troyer had decided that he wanted to get away from the shots so he rolled to his back, which ended up being a fatal mistake as Thompson secured a choke from behind and forced Troyer to tap out.

Thompson stated that he wasn’t even sure how his nose was even broken during the first minute of the bout.

” I honestly have no idea how my nose was broken,” said Thompson during a post-fight interview. ““I think he may have busted my nose during one of the slams but I’m still not sure. All I know is that it hurt”

A total of seven bouts took place at the event. The rest of the night’s results include the following:

Aaron Simpson def. Scott Dingman - TKO (Strikes)
Bryan Humes def. Ryan Murray - TKO (Strikes)
Angela Magana def. Lynn Alvarez - Submission (Armbar)
Chad George def. Rick Screeton - TKO (Strikes)
Seth Baczynski def. Chris Kennedy - TKO (Strikes)
Sara Schneider def. Kaitlin Young - Submission (Armbar)

Young Ready for Anticipated Bodog Fight Debut

According to Bodog Fight’s reigning women’s champion, fans in Sin City are about to bear witness to the future of mixed martial arts on Feb. 1.

That’s when the explosive force known as Kaitlin Young is scheduled to make her Bodog Fight debut at the Las Vegas Sport Center.

Photo courtesy of Bodog Fight.

“I believe Kaitlin Young is the future,” says Tara LaRosa.

“I was at a Hook-N-Shoot tournament in Indiana a couple of months ago when she knocked out three women in one night, all in the first round. It was frightening. Her striking is crisp and precise. Her timing is spot on, and her power is absolutely insane. Those women (Patti Lee, Meisha Tate and Suzi Smith) barely stood a chance.”

That’s high praise from a woman widely regarded as the best in the sport, but Bodog Fight matchmaker Eric Nicholl agrees that Young (4-0) is the real deal.

“Anybody can get a lucky knockout,” says Nicholl. “But to finish three opponents in devastating fashion in a single night is impressive. I mean, she slugged her way through that tournament in less than 1:53 of actual fight time.”

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