Rudimar Fedrigo. Photo courtesy of Tatame Magazine.
What was one of MMA’s most-feared camps is now a shade of its former self after the departures of the Rua brothers and Wanderlei Silva among others. However despite the lack of drawing power to his gym, Chute Boxe headmaster Rudimar Fedrigo promises that his creation is thriving and will be producing world champions once again in the near future:
“The Chute Boxe is a great school, which has an excellent list of technicians, and it’s structured well,” Fedrigo said. “You can be sure that it’s going to continue solid in the market. I don’t have any doubts about that. We have our own production of good athletes—forming champions—and we are going to continue doing that.”
Despite the flight of established stars, Fedrigo promised new Chute Boxe blood would arrive on the professional MMA scene soon. His track record gives him reason for optimism.
“The name of a gym like ours can even go through a crisis, but the one that has a name like we do, can get through this kind of crisis more easily,” said Fedrigo, who opened the academy 31 years ago. “Soon, we are going to present new names. We’re absolutely right that we’re going to make great champions.”
Personally, I can’t help but hope that Fedrigo is right. Just look at his track record. He’s developed a literal who’s who of stars in MMA - Silva, the Rua’s, Anderson Silva, Fabricio Werdum, and Gabriel Gonzaga for starters. Having one of MMA’s best trainers still wanting to work at his craft despite losing his top students is nothing but good for the sport.
Bobby Lashley. Photo courtesy of American Top Team.
— Former WWE star Bobby Lashley will soon join Brock Lesnar in the professional ranks of mixed martial arts. Lashley has reportedly signed on to make his pro debut against fellow newcomer Joshua Franklin at the Mixed Fighting Alliance’s scheduled December 13 event in Miami. The card will be headlined by a rematch between UFC veterans Ricco Rodriguez and Jeff Monson. Rodriguez stopped Monson via third-round TKO in the first meeting at UFC 35 in January 2002.
— UFC welterweight Josh Burkman will be sidelined indefinitely while attempting to heal two bulging discs in his back and another bulging disc in his neck. Burkman, who has attributed his current three-fight losing streak partially to the injury, says that he will first try to heal the injury via physical therapy before potentially undergoing surgery, which is similar to what Nate Quarry and Tito Ortiz have recently had, to repair the injury.
Gilbert Melendez throws a right hand at Tatsuya Kawajiri. Photo property of PRIDE FC Worldwide.
Nick Diaz and Gilbert Melendez, who will both be competing at the upcoming Elite Xtreme Combat and Strikeforce co-promoted “Shamrock vs Cung Le”, which take place on March 29th at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California, both apparently have new information concerning their opponents.
MMA Weekly originally reported that Melendez, who has been advertised as competing in DREAM’s upcoming lightweight grand prix, would not be fighting overseas and would in fact defend his Strikeforce lightweight title against Chute Boxe coach Cristiano Marcello instead. The news came from the mouth of Marcello himself.
Now our friends at MMA Junkie are reporting through Strikeforce vice-president Mike Afromowitz that the fight was never signed and an official opponent for Melendez could be named as soon as this afternoon.
Melendez was originally scheduled to defend his title against Josh Thompson and then Bodog star Jorge Masvidal but both were forced to pull out because of injury.
Diaz will reportedly take on a recently victorious Jae Suk Lim, who won the SpiritMC middleweight title for a second time with a decisive win over top prospect Yoon Young Kim last Sunday.
The news comes from GracieFighter, a site maintained by Diaz’s coach, Cesar Gracie, even though Lim stated after his win over Kim that he would fighting inside the confines of ICON Sport in his next bout.
Diaz has not fought since being upset by KJ Noons in a bid for the vacant EliteXC lightweight title.
During his time off, Diaz underwent plastic surgery to repair a large amount of scar tissue that developed around his eyes. The scar tissue certainly factored into his loss to Noons as the fight was stopped because of several cuts Diaz had suffered on his face.
Mauricio and Murilo Rua have both decided to leave the Chute Boxe camp in Brazil in order to open their own gym in the United States.
The news was announced on Chute Boxe’s official website earlier today.
The new gym will opened in an undisclosed location in Massachusetts according to Sherdog’s Gleidson Venga.
Rudimar Fedrigo, the head of Chute Boxe, stated that the Rua’s will always be welcomed back in the future if the situation ever arises:
“We have to remember that the Chute Boxe doors will always be open for them. We also wish them good luck in their new endeavors.”
2007 has been a horrible year for the team that was once considered one of the best in the world. Both Wanderlei Silva and Andre Dida left earlier this year to train with different teams in North America.
News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated.
- Check back later this morning for an extensive interview with MMA veteran Joe Camacho…
- The UFC has officially announced three more bouts for UFC 80: Rapid Fire in January, including Jason Lambert’s return to the Octagon against Wilson Gouveia.
The two were originally slated to fight at UFC 76 but Gouveia was forced to pull out of the fight after suffering a broken nose during training.
- K-1 Hero’s veteran Andre Dida has revealed that he will be leaving Chute Boxe to MMA Weekly:
“My brother (Mauricio ‘Veio’) lives in Canada and he has some contacts and some of his contacts made me an offer to teach mixed martial arts and Muay Thai in Canada,” said Dida. “It’s a very good offer and I cannot deny an opportunity like that. I have talked with Master Rafael Cordeiro and I’ve never seen him so sad with anything. He was disappointed with the news. I consider him as a father, but I have to leave.”
- Gray Maynard will take on Dennis Siver at UFC Fight Night 12 according to MMA Junkie.
Maynard was originally supposed to fight Matt Grice but Grice opted to decline the fight because of police training requirements. (You can read Grice’s entire explanation in the comments portion of MMA Junkie’s post.)
- Joe Riggs will take on Mike Gates at KOTC: Avalanche on December 15th at the Moncton Coliseum in Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada according to The Fight Network.
- The California State Athletic Commission has announced that Alexander Crispim has tested positive for Desoxymethyltestosterone, an anabolic steroid, following post-fight testing for Strikeforce: Four Men Enter, One Man Survives. Crispm has been suspended for one year and fined $2,500.
Forrest Griffin wishes you a good morning.
News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated…
- Luke Thomas of Bloody Elbow is reporting that the The Ultimate Fighter 7 will focus solely on the middleweight division:
UFC matchmaker Joe Silva made an appearance at the Combat Sports Challenge in Richmond, VA this past weekend where he announced to the crowd that the next season of The Ultimate Fighter will focus exclusively on the middleweight class. No further details are available at this time. However, if ultimately true, this would be a boon to a comparatively weak division. Stay tuned.
- Fight Opinion via MMA Movement is reporting that renowned grappler Rondalo “Jacare” Souza has announced that he has signed with the UFC.
Souza’s manager, Andre Cabral, apparently made the announcement at a recent Amazon Challenge event and was then later interviewed by a Brazilian news station.
Souza currently sports a professional MMA record of 5-1. He is a veteran of Jungle Fight, fighting in that promotion on four separate occasions. His lone loss came at the hands of Jorge Patino in 2003.
- Rafael Cordeiro of Chute Boxe has stated that Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos will fight at the next K-1 Hero’s event in October and then at Cage Rage 24 in December.
- MMA Junkie is reporting that Renato “Babalu” Sobral has signed Ken Pavia as his new agent:
Renato “Babalu” Sobral, who recently signed with Strikeforce after the UFC terminated his contract, has become the latest client of Ken Pavia’s MMA Agents sports agency.
Pavia told MMA Junkie of the signing late last night.
Other fighters that Pavia has recently added to his stable also include Cyrille Diabate, James Thompson, Carmelo Marerro, Todd Moore, and Carlo Prater according to the post.
- Fightlinker is passing along it’s own insider information concerning Tito Ortiz and his potential opponent at UFC 78:
I guess we’re at that size now where we start getting tips on stuff. On Saturday night, Tito Ortiz was at the Little Creek Casino in Shelton, WA. and got on the mic to say “Blah blah blah blah, my next fight will be against Wanderlei Silva or Rashad Evans”
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FOX Sports: UFC’s light heavyweights carry the sport
Fight Opinion: A Look Behind the Curtain: Zuffa’s Finances Come Into Focus
Yahoo! Sports: Strikeforce proves it isn’t an all-UFC world
411 Mania: Punch Drunk Hangover
Showtime hosted a conference call earlier this afternoon in preparation for the upcoming EliteXC: Uprising event scheduled to take place on September 15th in Honolulu, Hawaii. The fighters featured on the call were ICON Middleweight Champion Robbie Lawler, EliteXC Middleweight Champion Murlio Rua through the use of an interpreter, Jake Shields, and Gina Carano. Other officials participating in the call were EliteXC President Gary Shaw and ICON Sport President T. Jay Thompson.
MMA on Tap has learned that former UFC Middleweight Champion Evan Tanner has been proposed a possible bout with Dean Lister at UFC 79 in December.
Tanner has been out of action since submitting Justin Levens at UFC 59 in April of last year. After an attempt at creating a foundation for underprivileged mixed martial artists fell through, Tanner announced his intent to return to the UFC in May. Chute Boxe USA revealed that Tanner had joined the training team in June and stated that he would be fighting at a UFC event in September. Tanner was then heavily rumored to be fighting Marvin Eastman at UFC 76 but that rumor obviously turned out to be untrue.
Lister is coming off of surgery for a torn biceps muscle in his right arm, an injury that he suffered this past April. Lister’s manager, Jerry Villasenor, recently announced that his client was planning on returning at UFC 79 against an opponent that had not yet been named and that he would be running the new Xtreme Couture facility in San Diego. Lister last fought at UFC Fight Night 8 in January, losing an unanimous decision to Nate Marquardt.
Update 2:50 PM: It seems that Ryan from Fightlinker has also been made aware of the Tanner-Lister situation courtesy of Jorge Oliviera, Tanner’s training partner at Chute Boxe.
News and Notes
- We’ve decided to hold off a new MMA on Tap Top 10 until after the events in September.
- Fabricio Werdum has told MMA Weekly that he has joined the Chute Boxe team and has already began training with his new camp:
Werdum stated, “I am very happy with my new training partners and I hope I can get the Chute Boxe spirit and improve my stand up skills. When I first step here, I could see that my training speed wasn’t right. The training here is so much harder, but I am adapting myself and all the coaches and athletes are being like brothers.”
- Former UFC Middleweight Champion Murilo Bustamante has announced that he is reforming the Brazilian Top Team after the depature of the Nogueira brothers and Mario Sperry.
- MMA Weekly is also reporting via sources at BodogFight that the promotion plans to announce a new TV deal when their current contract with ION runs out in February of next year:
Sources at Bodog plan to announce a new U.S. television distribution deal once their current run on ION has ended, although no details were forthcoming at the time of publication.
- The California State Athletic Commission has announced that it will hear the appeal of UFC Lightweight Champion Sean Sherk’s positive test for steroids on October 31st in Los Angeles.
- Staying on the subject of athletic commissions, the Nevada State Athletic Commission has filed a formal complaint against Renato Sobral for his actions at UFC 74. Sobral will be required to meet with the NSAC at a later date to find out whether he may possibly be suspended or fined. $25,000 of his purse is still being withheld.
- Yahoo! Sports has posted their updated MMA Top 10...
- Former UFC Heavyweight Champion Tim Sylvia has landed at Xtreme Couture for a two day training session in preparation for his bout against Brandon Vera at UFC 77.
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Fight Opinion: Five things I learned from the UFC 75 conference call
Fightlinker: This is why I hate Japan
Today Tagg Radio broke the news that Forrest Griffin would face PRIDE light heavyweight ace Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC 76 on September 22nd in Anahiem, California. Master Rudimar Fedrigo solidified those reports but confirming that Shogun went to Las Vegas to sign the contract and shoot some pre-fight videos.
Master Rudimar Fedrigo confirmed us that Mauricio Shogun will face Forrest Griffin at UFC 76, that is schedule for September 22, at. “We went specially to Las Vegas to sign the contract for four fights and to record the videos for before the fight”, said Rudimar, that arrive at Curitiba today.
Rudimar also confirmed that Shogun’s brother, Murilo “Ninja” Rua, would be defending his EliteXC middleweight title against Robbie Lawler.