Tim Leidecker of Sherdog is reporting that Oleg Taktarov will be fighting for the first time since 1998 when he takes on fellow UFC veteran John Marsh at BodogFight: Russia vs USA II at the Khodynka Arena in Moscow, Russia on November 30th.
The fight will serve as the main event.
Taktarov has not fought since submitting Mick Tierney and Moti Horenstein in the same night in February 1998. Over the course of his short but eventful career, Taktarov racked up wins over Dave Beneteau, Tank Abbott, and Marco Ruas, all under the UFC banner.
Marsh is 0-1 so far in 2007, being stopped by Chad Griggs at the IFL’s Houston show back in February. Marsh owns wins Travis Fulton and Wesley Correira, and has gone the distance with Vladimir Matyushenko, Jeremy Horn, and Ricco Rodriguez.
News and Notes
- The Fight Network is reporting that Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson will face Mike Rourke in his promotional debut at EliteXC: Renegade on Nov. 10 at the America Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas.
- Randy Couture’s agent spoke with The Fight Network yesterday shooting down rumors about Couture earning between $3.25 and $3.75 million per fight.
“Based on Randy’s contract, $3.25 to $3.75 million is not even in the ballpark,” Walker said. “It’s beyond exaggerated. He’d never make that. I know what he’s been paid; I’ve seen the pay-per-view numbers. The numbers that are being thrown around are not accurate. Whoever gave that information does not have their facts straight.”
- The Fight Network is also reporting that B.J. Penn, the UFC’s current number one contender for the lightweight title may not face either Sean Sherk or Joe Stevenson until early February.
- So is Joe Riggs in or out of the Strikeforce middleweight tournament?
Loretta Hunt says that he’s out:
Joe Riggs will not be one of the four contestants to compete in California’s first regulated four-man tournament scheduled for Nov. 16’s Strikeforce “Four Man Enter, One Man Survives” event at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif. Riggs declined the slot, however, and will seek a single fight on the card instead.
“It’s a timing thing,” said Riggs’ manager Scott Lewis. “He just fought two weeks ago and he doesn’t want to step into the cage two times in one night. We’re speaking with Scott Coker [Strikeforce’s promoter] to see if we can get him a single fight that night. He loves working with Strikeforce and is looking to get on that card.”
However Sam Caplan reports that Riggs is still undecided:
When contacted by ProElite.com, Riggs did confirm that his status for the tournament is currently uncertain but did not rule out the possibility of competing in it.
According to Riggs, his former agent, Ken Pavia, committed him to the tournament without receiving proper consent. Riggs now has new representation and is evaluating the opportunity. He indicated that he could ready to make a decision on whether he will compete in the next several days.
- Be sure to check out our newest feature ‘Break It Down’ where John and I provide our thoughts and predictions on every fight set to take place Saturday night at UFC 77: Hostile Territory.
- Don’t forget to cast your vote on our latest edition of ‘Rock the Vote’.
- UFC veteran Elvis Sinosic will replace Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos at Cage Rage 24. Sinosic will be stepping up to face British fighter Paul Cahoon.
- Adam Smith will appeal his positive tests for steroids, marijuana, and cocaine with the CSAC.
- Eddie Alvarez has told Sam Caplan that he’s been informed to prepare for a possible rematch with Nick Thompson in December.
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Mixed martial arts powerhouse Bodog Fight is teaming up with an organization founded by two of the biggest names in the sport.
Bodog Fight will sponsor the next event by Oregon-based SportFight, an up-and-coming MMA promotion founded by Team Quest marvels Randy “The Natural” Couture and Matt “The Law” Lindland.
Bodog Fight Presents: SportFight 20, The Homecoming will take place October 27 at the Rose Garden in Portland, Oregon. The co-main events will feature Bodog Fight’s Chael Sonnen (20-8-1) and Kyacey “Ice Cold” Uscola (13-9) in a middleweight bout, and a welterweight battle between Chris “The Professor” Wilson (13-3) and Derrick Noble (22-9-1).
“We are delighted to be working with SportFight,” said Bodog Fight’s billionaire creator Calvin Ayre. “Joining forces will allow us to bring some of the world’s best mixed martial arts fighters to fans in the Portland area.”
News and Notes
- Fedor Emelianenko has denied an invitation to compete in Super Challenge Grappling’s December event:
Promoter Paulo Vasconcellos traveled to Russia and invited Fedor Emelianenko to compete in December’s Super Challenge Grappling event, which will pit eight Brazilians against eight foreign competitors in an open-weight submission tournament in Brazil. However, the top-ranked heavyweight kindly refused the invitation, according to the promoter.
Nothing big, just some different Fedor news…
- Gilbert Melendez’s hand is injured but not brokenaccording to a recent set of x-rays. Since there are no broken bones, Melendez would like to be part of Strikeforce’s next event in November:
“I got it x-rayed. The guy said I was lucky. No break. Just a lot of swelling. I’m getting a sonogram … to make sure there are no torn tendons.”
I believe there’s a Strikeforce in November,” Melendez commented. “If I’m healthy and I’m ready to go, I wouldn’t mind jumping on there. I’m in good shape. I want to keep fighting.”
- Speaking of being part of Strikeforce’s November event, former UFC heavyweight title contender Paul Buentello will fight on the card according to Brian Knapp of The Fight Network.
Massachusetts State Boxing Commission head Dan Fitzpatrick thinks that the state will probably never legalize MMA:
“My sense is before they ever regulate and allow it, the state would have all kinds of hearings and take a long time to pass it if it ever passed at all,” said Dan Fitzpatrick, chairman of the Massachusetts State Boxing Commission. “My gut tells me they wouldn’t allow it.”
- Five Ounces of Pain is looking for some more writers...
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Two of the worlds most formidable fighters will do battle on the next episode of the hit mixed martial arts series Bodog Fight: New Jersey, with the winner taking home the inaugural Bodog Fight Middleweight Championship belt.
South Africa’s Trevor Prangley (14-4) would like nothing more than to adorn his muscular midriff with the bejeweled belt, but first he will have to get past Yuki Kondo (46-19-6).
A Japanese legend, Kondo has faced a who’s who of the sport, including Tito Ortiz, Wanderlei Silva, Phil Baroni, Josh Barnett, and Dan Henderson. Needless to say, the 31-year-old Pancrase veteran is confident he can whip Prangley.
“Trevor is tough, but I’ve fought some of the best fighters in the world and I believe my experience will serve me well for this fight,” warned Kondo.
It’s been a while since we’ve had one of these. I guess potential fight matchups haven’t been coming out in huge bunches lately.
Apparently a lot of news has come out of Strikeforce’s latest show at the Playboy Mansion this past weekend. The promotion announced that signing of Renato “Babalu” Sobral but that wasn’t all that was revealed courtesy of Gary Herman at 15 Rounds.
Sobral has told Herman that Strikeforce has also inked former UFC Heavyweight Champion Kevin Randleman and Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos to contracts. Sobral stated that he would like to fight either of the two:
Sobral signed a three-fight contract with Strikeforce.
“Strikeforce is a very strong organization. They are bringing in a lot of good fighters in my weight class,” said Sobral.
According to Sobral, two other fighters headed to Strikeforce are Kevin “Monster” Randleman and Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos. Sobral has his sights set on both of the former Pride Fighting Championship competitors.
“I’d like to fight both Randleman and Cyborg,” Sobral said.
Sobral also stated that he expects to fight in December.
Frank Shamrock says that he expects to be back in action at some point next spring.
After Daniel Puder’s victory Saturday night, he went over and challenged K-1 veteran Bob Sapp:
“After the match, I went and told Bob Sapp I want to fight him,” Puder said.
Puder said that Sapp was more than willing to accept the challenge.
“Sapp is going to talk to Scott Coker about it. We want to make it happen,” said Puder. “I want to fight him next year.”
BodogFight Middleweight Champion Trevor Prangley noted that discussions are currently taking place in order to have him making his first title defense against Matt Lindland:
“It has been talked about,” said Prangley. “I would love to fight him.”
Touch of gloves to Five Ounces of Pain for the find.
Kyacey Uscola vs Gegard Mousas
Photo: Alanah McGinley, MMA on Tap
Towards the end of August at the Bodog Fight taping in North Vancouver, I had a chance to catch up with Kyacey “Ice Cold” Uscola.
Originally from Rupert, Idaho, Uscola has moved up quickly in the MMA world and has a following that seems to extend all over the place. He’s made a bit of a splash in the last couple seasons of Bodog Fight, stopping Joseph Baize and winning a unanimous decision over Izuru Takeuchi. His future seems bright, and with that in mind I threw a few questions at Kyacey just a couple hours before he was scheduled to fight Gegard Mousasi.
Calvin Ayre and Tara LaRosa
Photo: Alanah McGinley, MMA on Tap
BodogFight owner Calvin Ayre is a friendly, easy-going guy to hang out with. He can talk a little trash and crack a few jokes, doing a little business on the side and shaking some hands… all while making a half dozen of people around him feel like he’s genuinely enjoying their company. Charm is a necessary talent in showbiz and Ayre has got it in spades.
However, that’s show business and in this writer’s experience, ‘charm’ is a rare quality on the business side of sports. But then Calvin Ayre is a rare sort of businessman, and one who’s come a long way from his start in Saskatchewan, Canada
“Oh, my. A long, long way!” laughs Ayre, who currently makes his home in Antigua. Though with some 10 months of the year living in hotels, “home” is a bit of a foreign concept to him these days. But that’s the lifestyle he enjoys – just don’t try and tell him that he’s doing the ‘Hollywood thing.’ The guy is charming, but he’ll still (very politely) smack you down for it.
“We’re anti-Hollywood. I don’t think we’re Hollywood at all. We’re not stuffy. Hollywood’s all about pretenses and shit. This is a kind of blue collar thing… let’s call it Blue Collar Hollywood. It’s an “everyman’s” kind of Hollywood.”
There are fighters who act crazy before a fight, and then there are fighters who act crazy in the ring. New York’s Crazy Dan “The Caveman” Hawley does both.
It is safe to say four-time state wrestling champion Blair Tugman (1-0) will have his hands full when he steps into the ring against the unorthodox and unpredictable Hawley (4-0) on the next episode of the hit mixed martial arts series Bodog Fight: New Jersey, airing Tuesday, September 18 at 11 p.m. / 10 p.m. Central on the ION Television Network.
“I’ve never lost a fight and I never will,” says “The Caveman” with confidence. “I plan to rip off my opponent’s arm and feed it to him in the ring. Meow!”
“He’s going to have to fight my style,” replies an unfazed Tugman. “He should worry about what I’m going to do to him, not what he’s going to do to me! I’m used to training with bigger guys, so I don’t think I’ll have any problem taking him down and controlling him on the mat.”
BodogFight veterans Jorge Masvidal and Matt Lee are set to clash at Strikeforce’s party at the Playboy Mansion on September 29th according to The Fight Network.
Masvidal has been one of BodogFight’s fastest rising stars, collecting wins over Keith Wisniewski and Steve Berger along the way. He earned the biggest win of his young career when he knocked out UFC and PRIDE veteran Yves Edwards with a head kick at BodogFight: Alvarez vs Lee back in July. Masvidal also owns a win over Joe Lauzon as well.
Lee is coming off an unanimous decision loss to former BodogFight Welterweight Champion Eddie Alvarez in a hard fought battle in July. Lee has also gone the distance with Jason Ireland and Edson Berto as well. This will be Lee’s first fight under the Strikeforce banner.
No word on whether this fight will take place at lightweight or welterweight.