Loretta Hunt of The Fight Network is reporting through a source close to M-1 that Fedor Emelianenko has signed an exclusive deal with the promotion:
PRIDE heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko has committed exclusively to the new ownership of M-1 Mix-Fight Championship, which has been purchased outright by an undisclosed American entertainment-related company, according to a source close to the deal who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
Established in 1997, the St. Petersburg-based M-1 held over 30 events under the ownership of Russian businessman Vadim Finkelstein, also the long-time manager of the much-sought-after Emelianenko. Finkelstein is also the proprietor of the Red Devil Sports Club, a facility and team that houses numerous Russian fighters, including PRIDE veteran Roman Zentsov and former UFC middleweight Andrei Semenov.
Now notice what was just quoted above - M-1 was purchased by an undisclosed American entertainment-related company.
I’m just going out on a limb here but with all the rumors floating around about a “new PRIDE” coming together, I have two questions to ask: Does this “undisclosed American company” have anything to do with Ed Fishman? Also, did Fedor decide to sign with M-1 instead of the UFC because this might be “the new PRIDE”?
Finkelstein is going to help with the running of the promotion, meaning that Fedor is obviously going to be the focal point of things.
Anything is possible at this point but we won’t have to wait very long to find out exactly what’s going on as a formal announcement of the purchase, the Fedor signing, and the promotion’s next event is expected before the end of October.
News and Notes
- The WEC has announced their next card will be headlined by a lightweight title bout between “Razor” Rob McCullough and Rich “Cleat” Crunkilton.
- Quinton “Rampage” Jackson has signed a new four-fight deal with the UFC. His first fight will be a match for the UFC light heavyweight belt with Chuck Liddell.
- Diego Sanchez recently spoke with Houston Chronicle and during the interview he stressed the fact that he is looking to fight Matt Hughes.
“I’ve been calling out Matt Hughes. The man that I want is Matt Hughes. They gave him Chris Lytle (at UFC 68), and I think, honestly, it should have been me and Matt Hughes right now, instead of me and (Josh) Koscheck.”
“Me and Dana talked about this, and he said he needs contenders. And, if me and Matt fight, there’s only going to be one contender, but I’m still going to work hard after this fight to call him out and say, ‘Hey, man, let’s do this; let’s make it happen.’ I’ve worked my way up and ever since I started in this fight game, I’ve wanted to fight Matt Hughes. I believe I can submit him. I believe I can stop him from taking me down and outbox and outmuscle him.”
- Wensday April 4th Spike TV will be televising Countdown to UFC 69 and UFC All Access with Georges St. Pierre.
- UFC veteran Sam Hoger will make his IFL debut April 7th when he faces the experienced veteran and Lion’s Den fighter Vernon “Tiger” White.
Video of the Day
Rock the Vote Results
Who is currently the best striker in the UFC?
Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic - 44%
Chuck Liddell - 37%
Anderson Silva - 12%
Brandon Vera - 6%
Other - 1%
Be sure to vote on our newest poll.
Tatame: Fabricio Werdum Interview
How was that change from the Pride to the UFC?
My manager Ken May said that I was going to fight at the Pride 33, but it seems that they didn’t accept the purse we asked them, so he tough that was better to me to go fighting at UFC. He didn’t explained to me very well, but I know they will pay me much better there, I think almost the double that I am receiving at the Pride organization.
But didn’t you have a contract with the Pride?
No, my contract is with Ken May, my contract finishes on December and I want to renovate. I want to be the champion this year. I am at UFC now so I want to be the champion there. I did a contract of four bouts with the UFC and I want to dispute the belt on the third or on the fourth bout of my contract.
Fight Opinion Radio #43: Ed Fishman
In this 70-minute interview, Ed discusses the Fishman Companies lawsuit versus Dream Stage Entertainment. There are some very intriguing facts coming out of this interview that you have not heard anywhere else.
News and Notes
- PRIDE USA president Ed Fishman has filed a lawsuit against Dream Stage Entertainment.
- PRIDE USA VP Jerry Millen has commented on the rumored sale of PRIDE FC to Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta.
“It’s bullshit. You can’t beleive what you read on the internet and as a matter of fact I just got off the phone with Japan and Pride has not been sold and is not being sold to anyone, especially to Zuffa. We are in the process of making some ground breaking deals that will be bringing in large sums of revenue to the company and making it stronger than ever.”
- PRIDE president Noboyuki Sakakibara feels if there is anyone that can defeat Ricardo Arona it’s Sokoudjou.
“Nobody thought he would fight so well against Rogério. We received thousands of requests from Japanese that want to see him, live, fighting, and the BTT does not want to leave things as they are, so we chose him to face Arona. Sokoudjou accepted the challenge saying: ‘The answer is yes, whether my opponent is a human, a giraffe or Arona,’” said Sakakibara. “I implore everybody to watch this fight. Sokoudjou is only 22 years old, and if there is anyone that can knock down Arona, I believe it will be someone like Sokodjou,” Sakakibara completed.
- ProElite.com will be streaming Icon Sport: Epic live March 31st. The card feature a title fight between PRIDE and UFC veterans Frank Trigg and Robbie Lawler. Also on the card is UFC veterans Jason Miller and Renato Verissimo.
Clip of the Day
Fight Opinion: Fishman Companies vs. DSE
News and Notes
- PRIDE has canceled their 04/28 USA show. This is unfortunate considering how exciting PRIDE 33: Second Coming was but one can definitely assume the organization is in some serious trouble. PRIDE USA President Ed Fishman is in the process of taking legal action against the company. For more information on the situation check out Zach Arnold’s piece at Fight Opinion.
- At the UFC 68 post-fight press conference, UFC president Dana White, said that UFC light heavyweight champion Chuck Liddell is currently suffering from pneumonia and he should never have been let on the “Good Morning Texas” show. White was visibly unhappy and he said that he was flying to San Luis Obispo to check on him. The representative that took Liddell to the appearance was from Warner.
- During the UFC 68 post-fight presser, Matt Hughes stated that former UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia came into the fight with a bad back that almost forced him to withdraw from the fight.
Sylvia, who dropped to 25-3, said in the ring that he had come into the fight carrying an injury but was beaten “fair and square.” He did not attend the post-fight news conference but Hughes said Sylvia had an injured back and had considered pulling out of the bout.
- Injury or not, Dana White didn’t feel it was an intelligent move on Sylvia’s part to tell the crowd he was injured coming into the fight.
“Even if he did, he should have never said it,” White said when asked of the injury and the comment in the ring. “Tim has an big image problem, you could see it tonight. Tim’s a good guy. He’ll come back. He’s a tough kid. This is going to be a hard one for him. There was no doubt in his mind he was going to beat Randy Couture tonight. He was overconfident.”
- Assuming Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic gets by Gabriel Gonzaga at UFC 70: Nations Collide, Cro Cop and Couture will face off in a heavyweight title fight some time during the summer. For the first time in a while the UFC will have a very legit and marketable heavyweight title fight.
- Speaking of Cro Cop, according to Canada.com, Cro Cop asked the UFC brass for a fight with Brandon “Truth” Vera but it is currently on hold as Vera and Zuffa are having a very difficult time agreeing on a new contract.
Today, Sherdog.com released an excellent interview with Ed Fishman where he discusses his hopes to purchase PRIDE FC.
Fishman expresses his hopes to eventually have a chance to purchase the organization but he also reveals that he hasn’t currently had any discussions with PRIDE or Mr. Sakakibara.
Ed Fishman: Yes I am. I wish I could have a chance to buy PRIDE. It’s to me the best MMA in the business. And I have absolutely made that known to Mr. Sakakibara — I call him Nobu. We have not gone into real heavy details yet. He is back in Japan now, and he’ll be here next week when we’re getting ready for the 24th. I’m sure we’ll have more conversations then, but I am dead serious about buying it.
While they haven’t currently had any discussions, Fishman hopes to kick them off in a week or so when Sakakibara comes to the States for the upcoming PRIDE show.
Fishman: As soon as possible. [Sakakibara] is coming here in a week or so to do the 24th, and I’m sure we’ll spend a lot of time talking about it.
News and Notes
- PRIDE USA President Ed Fishman has expressed that he is currently doing everything possible to purchase the PRIDE organization. Fishman feels that the only two people in the running for the organization are the UFC and him.
- Strikeforce and EliteXC have reached a deal which will allow them to co-promote cards on Showtime. Showtime will do a joint broadcast in April when Frank Shamrock and Phil Baroni fight in Strikeforce.
- Tito Ortiz will guest star in NUMB3RS Friday, Feb. 16 on CBS.
- Andrei Arlovski is expected to fight on UFC 70 against Jim York. Mirko Filipovic will also be on the card.
The Fight Network: The Cro Cop Mystique
And what did McCarthy glean from the dangerous kickboxer’s performance Saturday night?
“The Octagon is a bigger surface area,” says McCarthy. “I think Mirko was using the same footwork he’s always used and that caused some problems for him when he tried to cut Sanchez off.”
The motivation to improve appears to be there. Before leaving for his 18-hour journey back to his homeland, Filipovic asked McCarthy for a recommendation to import a cage to him there.