Falaniko Vitale

The Daily Recap: HDNet to Air “Fedor vs Silva” Prelims, Stevenson-Castillo & More


Fedor Emelianenko. Photo by Esther Lin/AllElbows.com.

The Daily Recap is a collection of news and notes from around the web that will be posted at the end of each day. Bout signings, injury news and much more can all be found here.

— HDNet today added the undercard of Strikeforce's "Fedor vs. Silva" event to their scheduled lineup for February 12. The event kicks off the organization's much-anticipated heavyweight grand prix tournament. Preliminary bouts shown by HDNet will feature Igor Gracie and Sam Oropeza among others. [MMA Junkie]

— A lightweight bout between "TUF 2" winner Joe Stevenson and WEC veteran Danny Castillo has been inked for UFC on Versus 3, which is slated for March 3 in Louisville, KY. It replaces a scheduled bout between Johny Hendricks and Paulo Thiago that was scrapped this week due to a Thiago injury. [MMA Mania]

Continue reading "The Daily Recap: HDNet to Air “Fedor vs Silva” Prelims, Stevenson-Castillo & More"

Ludwig Stops Morgan, Trigg Defeats Vitale at Strikeforce

BROOMFIELD, CO — Knockout artist Duane “Bang” Ludwig (17-8) capped off an electrifying night of Strikeforce mixed martial arts (MMA) action, scoring a first round TKO on Sam “The Squeeze” Morgan (19-12), in their highly-anticipated rematch at Broomfield, Colorado’s Broomfield Event Center on Friday, October 3rd.  Superstar Frank “Twinkle Toes” Trigg (18-6) controlled the action against Falaniko “Niko” Vitale (26-9) for three consecutive rounds to notch a unanimous judges’ decision victory.

Continue reading "Ludwig Stops Morgan, Trigg Defeats Vitale at Strikeforce"

Trigg-Vitale Possible for Strikeforce in October


Frank Trigg. Photo by Mary Ann Owen.

Despite Strikeforce officials releasing a press release this evening advertising former UFC welterweight title challenger Frank Trigg as facing fellow veteran Falaniko Vitale on October 3rd in Denver, Trigg himself has stated that he will not commit himself to the fight until after his scheduled matchup against Makoto Takimoto at World Victory Road’s “Sengoku IV” show on August 24th in Japan.

Trigg revealed his plans to MMA Junkie. According to the part-time radio show co-host, he has not yet signed a contract to fight Vitale out of hesitation that an unforseen circumstance could prevent him from participating in the organization’s fall event.

“I plan to fight for Strikeforce on Oct. 3, but I don’t want to commit and then not be able to fight,” Trigg said. “I definitely want to fight, but I just don’t want to make that promise and then not be able to compete because of an injury or something from [next week’s] fight in Japan. I don’t even want to talk about the October fight. I have not signed a contract (with Strikeforce). I won’t even look at the contract until I get back from Japan because I want all of my focus to be on Takimoto.”

Continue reading "Trigg-Vitale Possible for Strikeforce in October"

Strikeforce Medical Suspensions

The California State Athletic Commission released the official list of medical suspensions stemming from last weekend’s Strikeforce: Four Men Enter, One Man Survives event that took place at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, CA.

Falaniko Vitale, Trevor Prangley, Bryson Kamaka, and Chris Drumm have all been medically suspended for 45 days and with no contact for 30 days.

Paul Buentello has been medically suspended for 60 days and can also have no contact in training for the same amount of time because of lacerations around his eye. A similar situation may also occur for Bobby Southworth who was medically suspended for 45 days with no contact for 30 days but may have his suspension extended to 60 days and without contact if a doctor does not clear a laceration above Southworth’s left eye.

Both Alistair Overeem and Brian Schwartz have been medically suspended for 180 days and with no contact for the same amount of time. Overeem has a possible fracture in his finger and his suspension can be reduced after clearance by a physician. Schwartz has a possible fracture in his left hand. If Schwartz is found to not have a fractured hand, he will not be required to serve any of the suspension.

The biggest suspensions were received by Sean Salmon and Sam Morgan who were both medically suspended for an indefinite amount of time. However if and when the fighters are cleared by a doctor, they will be required to serve a 45 day suspension without contact for 30 days.

Santiago Rolls to Tournament Victory


Photo by Jon Swenson, Sharkspage

Jorge Santiago needed less than three minutes in order to capture the state of California and Strikeforce’s first-ever four-man mixed martial arts tournament last night.

Santiago scored victories over Sean Salmon and Trevor Prangley in front of 8,233 at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, CA.

Both Santiago and Prangley headed into the tournament in relatively good shape considering they had each fought earlier in the evening. They decided to keep the bout on the feet during the opening moments of their fight. Santiago battered Prangley with a flurry of leg kicks early on, connecting with one that knocked Prangley to the ground.

Santiago continued to stalk Prangley connecting with a number of unanswered punches and kicks. Santiago connected with a knee to the body and followed it up with a right hand that sent Prangley to the canvas. Santiago pounced on him and following up with another right hand but referee Jon Schorle decided that Prangley had enough and stopped the fight.

After the fight, Santiago admitted that sticking to his game plan ultimately won him the fight:

“I’ve been studying his game for a long time and I knew that he was a tough guy,” said Santiago. “I knew that he was probably going to try and take me down and drop some bombs. I just stuck to my game. I saw the best time to go and I took over.”

Continue reading "Santiago Rolls to Tournament Victory"

Strikeforce to Stream Live on Yahoo! Sports

Strikeforce has announced that they will be streaming their upcoming show, Strikeforce: Tournament Series, live on Yahoo! Sports Friday, November 16 beginning at 11 PM EST.

Available to all internet users located beyond a 150 mile radius of San Jose, the live stream, free of charge to viewers, will begin at 8 PM PST (11 PM EST) and include the entire Strikeforce four-man, single-elimination tournament, featuring middleweight (185 lb. limit) stars Trevor Prangley (16-4), Falaniko Vitale (24-7), Yuki Sasaki (21-13-1), and Jorge Santiago (14-7). Each tournament bout will consist of two, five-minute rounds.

Also included in the stream will be the Strikeforce heavyweight title fight between Paul “The Headhunter” Buentello and Alistair Overeem, Cung Lee vs. Sam Morgan, Bobby Southworth vs. Anthony Ruiz and Brian “The Mad Stork” Schwartz vs. Lemont Davis.

Lottery to Decide Strikeforce Matchups

A lottery ball drawing, which will take place immediately following the fighter weigh-ins at the HP Pavilion’s The Grill restaurant on Thursday, the eve of Strikeforce’s mixed martial arts mega-card, will determine the tournament brackets for Friday’s historic, four-man middleweight (185 lb. limit) tournament.

Tournament competitors Trevor Prangley (16-4), Falaniko “Niko” Vitale (24-7), Yuki Sasaki (21-13-1), and Jorge Santiago (14-7) will each draw one of four balls, numbered “1” through “4,” and, then, one by one, choose which location in the single-elimination tournament draw they wish to occupy.  The first choice will be given to the fighter who draws the ball numbered 1, the second choice to the fighter who draws ball number 2, and so forth.

Each tournament bout will consist of two, five-minute rounds.  The victor of the first-ever sanctioned mixed martial arts tournament in the state of California will potentially be awarded the opportunity to challenge Strikeforce World Middleweight Champion, Frank Shamrock.

Continue reading "Lottery to Decide Strikeforce Matchups"

CKA: Oct 22, 2007

News and Notes

- Strikeforce announced the four participants for their first ever one-night tournament set to take place at their next event on November 16th at the HP Pavilion in San Jose.

The four middleweights that will participate are Falaniko Vitale, Trevor Prangley, Yuki Sasaki and Jorge Santiago.

Each tournament bout will consist of two, two-minute rounds. If a draw is declared following the second round of a fight, an overtime round will be added to the bout to determine a victor. The winner of the tournament may earn the opportunity to face Frank Shamrock in the near future.

- Rich Franklin’s publicity manager has stated that reports about a possible early retirement for Franklin are not true:

“Rich still has a lot left to accomplish in this sport,” said J.T. Stewart, Franklin’s publicity manager. “It’s too early for him to even consider retirement at this point.”

- Paul Buentello will face Alistair Overeem or the vacant Strikeforce Heavyweight Title on November 16th as well.

- Dave Meltzer has another description of Don Frye’s apparent street fight with the bodyguard of Leland Chapman:

The fight with Don Frye and “Sonny,” who was Leland Chapman’s bodyguard, started when promoter Chris Salsbury told Scott Steiner that MMA promoter Phil Flathres would be in charge of paying the wrestlers. The wrestlers came to Flathers for their money. Somehow the MMA people and wrestling people were played against each other and tension developed. “Sonny” started making remarks about pro wrestling, which saw an MMA fighter/pro wrestler, Frye, telling him to shut up. Frye had been drinking and was loaded. It wound up with them going outside.

“Sonny” allegedly sucker punched Frye, bloodying him up. Frye then allegedly single legged Sonny and was punching him hard from the mount when it was pulled apart. The second confrontation in the parking lot saw Sonny knock down Frye and Sonny and Leland Chapman ran off as Scott Norton came and Frye got up. It should be noted that we’ve gotten many different versions and all are slightly different but this seems to be the best detailed version.

- Meltzer is also reporting that a fight between Chuck Liddell and Wanderlei Silva has not yet been signed, thus why there was no announcement of it on Saturday night.

Radio Schedule

Fightlinker Podcast: The Low Blow Episode 21

12-1 PM EST - TAGG Radio
1-3 PM EST - The Jordan Breen 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

CKA: Oct 14, 2007

A lot of news to report so I’ve decided to throw up a Sunday edition of CKA…

News and Notes

- Pancrase has been forced to cancel it’s championship main event for this morning’s 2007 Rising Tour show after former heavyweight King of Pancrase Kestutis “Tiger” Arbocius pulled a no-show. His scheduled opponent, current Heavyweight King of Pancrase Assuerio Silva, has been removed from the card and will defend his title at a later date.

Officials from Sherdog have stated that varying reports reveal that no one really knows where Arbocius is right now:

Initial reports from Japanese media, which attributed information to Arbocius’ management, suggested that the 32-year-old Lithuanian* may have had difficulty with local police.

A Pancrase official disputed that report, telling Sherdog.com via e-mail, “Nobody knows where he is, even his manager. Pancrase is trying to keep in touch with him.”

Yuki Kondo’s bout against Yuji Sakuragi will now serve as the main event for the show.

- Shooto has announced five more bouts for it’s Back to our Roots 6 card, set for November 8th at Yoyogi National Stadium Second Gymnasium in Tokyo:

Shinichi Kojima vs Eduardo Dantas
Megumi Fujii vs Kyoko Takabayashi
Rambaa Somdet vs Masaaki Sugawara
Masashi Yozen vs Leandro Silva
Hayate Usui vs Shintaro Ishiwatari

- In a recent interview with ADCC News, Jake Shields stated that he is closer to signing with the UFC than EliteXC right now:

“I want to go out there and fight the best. I’m really looking at UFC over Elite because that is where a lot of top guys are. In the next few weeks I’ll probably make my decision on where I’m going to be signing. I’m sure we’re going to talk to them in the next week before we sign anything with Elite. I’m ready to get in there with the top guys. With the Rumble on the Rock tournament and EliteXC and my last four or five fights have been top come and have been fast, easy fights. I think it definitely shows I belong there.”

- The Edmonton Sun is reporting that Hardcore Championship Fighting is currently in contract talks with Vitor Belfort, Ricardo Arona, and John Alessio:

The Canadian fight club has been on a big-name signing binge of late.

Pride’s Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, former UFC veterans Renato ‘Babalu’ Sobral and Joe Riggs have signed on. Negotiations are ongoing with former UFC heavyweight champ Vitor Belfort, Pride vet Ricardo Arona and Canadian John Alessio.

“We are the only Canadian promotion that is bringing in huge international names,” says Crawford. “We remain committed to promoting local talent, but I believe Canadians are educated in the sport and want to see the world’s best.”

- American Top Team has announced that Seth Petruzelli has joined the ranks of the Florida-based training team:

Seth has been involved in the MMA scene for awhile and decided to join ATT to help further his career while preparing and train for his fights. When not preparing for his fights at the Main academy in Coconut Creek, FL. Seth will continue teaching at ATT Orlando along with Paul Rodriguez.

Look for Seth to be back in action Oct. 27th at Knight Fights in Orlando, Florida.

- Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer is reporting that Strikeforce will hold a four-man middleweight tournament at their next event on November 16th:

Strikeforce announced the first one-night tournament ever in California, which will be a four-man middleweight tournament featuring Joe Riggs and Falaniko Vitale on 11/16 in San Jose at the HP Pavilion. Promoter Scott Coker said it was be streamed live on Yahoo! like the Playboy Mansion show was. Cung Le will be in the non-tourament main event.

CKA: Sep 28, 2007

I give this guy an A for effort. Hopefully the UFC considers him at least.

News and Notes

Everyone is excited about the return of Gilbert Melendez…

Sherdog: Melendez Makes 2007 Debut in Strikeforce
MMA Weekly: Melendez Returns More Determined Than Ever
Yahoo! Sports: Melendez the best fighter you might not know
Bloody Elbow: The World’s #1 Lightweight Fights Saturday at the Playboy Mansion
CBS Sports: Q&A with Strikeforce lightweight champ Gilbert Melendez

- Jordan Breen says that the UFC is trying to secure another TV deal in Japan with WOWOW:

In the most recent issue of the Japanese combat sports periodical Gonkaku, Zuffa co-owner Lorenzo Fertitta said he hoped to ink a new deal with Japanese satellite channel WOWOW next year. He added that an agreement could be accomplished sooner rather than later.

While a deal is far from complete, this is good news for Japanese MMA fans. As of March 2007, WOWOW has just over 2.43 million subscriptions in Japan. After the channel’s UFC 70 telecast in April, network executives had officially announced that they could not reach a contractual agreement with Zuffa to continue broadcasting UFC events.

- Din Thomas will most likely be out for at least four months according to MMA Weekly.

You may remember that Thomas injured his knee while attempting to take Kenny Florian down in their fight at UFC Fight Night 11. It turns out that Thomas suffered a torn meniscus, stretched anterior cruciate ligament, bruised femur, and a damaged tibia and will be required to undergo arthroscopic surgery within the next two weeks.

- Falaniko Vitale has been added to the Strikeforce card for this Saturday and will make his Strikeforce debut against Ron Fields.

- 411 Mania has confirmed with B.J. Penn’s camp that he is booked for UFC 79 in December.

- Tonight’s episode of Human Weapon on The History Channel will feature Strikeforce welterweight Cung Le.

- The second installment of Inside MMA will be broadcasted tonight at 9:30 PM EST on HDNet. Tonight’s episode will feature a segment on Shane Carwin, a visit to Duke Roufus’ MMA school in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, highlights, and rankings. Hosts Kenny Rice and Bas Rutten will be joined by guests UFC referee “Big” John McCarthy, Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson, and Chris Bruno.

- Still looking for something else to watch? Spike TV will be airing a replay of UFC Fight Night 11 tonight starting at 9 PM EST.

- Zach Arnold is reporting that Kazuhiro Nakamura and his management team, J-Rock, plan to file an appeal with the CSAC:

J-ROCK, the management team of Kazuhiro Nakamura, fired back at the California State Athletic Commission in the Japanese press on Thursday. The company released a statement on behalf of Nakamura, denying that he was guilty of using marijuana and that they are appealing the ruling. They want a drug test re-examination and are considering the current ruling a mistake. (In the statement, J-ROCK claims that they talked to Nakamura after the news of the failed drug test came out. Nakamura stated that he had no motive whatsoever for using marijuana and has not used marijuana.)

- Sam Caplan has an excellent interview with UFC light heavyweight contender Houston Alexander at Five Ounces of Pain. A single father taking care of six kids while fighting in the UFC, hosting his own radio show, and traveling the country to lecture on the culture of hip hop. Holy shit.

Radio Schedule

12-1 PM - Tagg Radio
1-3 PM - The Savage Dog Show
3-4 PM - Fight Network Radio
3-5 PM - The Beatdown
9-10 PM - MMAWeekly’s Sound Off
11 PM - Knockout Radio

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