Featherweight

TKO Inks Hominick to Long-Term Deal


Mark Hominick weighs-in for UFC 58: USA vs. Canada. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

TKO Championship Fighting announced over the weekend that they have signed former featherweight champion Mark Hominick to a long-term deal.

Hominick last fought for the promotion in December, winning a unanimous decision over Danny Martinez. He was granted his release from World Extreme Cagefighting following a submission loss to Josh Grispi in February.

“I’m so thrilled to be back fighting for the TKO organization and in front of the Montreal crowd,” Hominick said in a press release sent out to the media. I’ve always felt like Montreal and TKO was like my home. More than anything else, I want to be the TKO champion once again and I’m willing to fight whoever they put in front of me to get my title back.”

According to TKO President Stephane Patry, Hominick’s new deal makes him one of the highest-paid fighters in the Quebec-based organization.

“I’ve always been the world’s biggest fan of Mark Hominick and he’s always been a top priority for me and the whole TKO organization,” Patry said. “We sat down with his new management group and we reached a very good deal with Mark that makes him one of the highest paid fighters in the organization and he deserved it.”

Hominick is also currently slated to likely be part of Affliction Clothing’s inaugural show in July. The event will reportedly be headlined by a heavyweight clash between top ranked Fedor Emelianenko and former UFC heavyweight champion Tim Sylvia.

Imanari to Defend Against Mishima in May


Dokonjonosuke Mishima. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

DEEP featherweight champion Masakazu Imanari will defend his title and attempt to avenge a prior loss against Dokonjonosuke Mishima at the organization’s next event on May 19th at Korakuen Hall in Tokyo, Japan.

The promotion officially announced the bout this past week.

Imanari and Mishima originally fought at a DEEP event in July 2003, where Mishima stopped Imanari with strikes in the second round.

Imanari submitted Jean Silva last month to successfully defend his Cage Rage featherweight title. Imanari is currently riding a five-fight winning streak and has won his last three bouts inside the confines of DEEP.

Mishima has not fought since losing a pair of fights while with the Ultimate Fighting Championship. The colorful veteran was submitted by Joe Stevenson and Kenny Florian in consecutive bouts.

DEEP’s May show will also feature the remainder of the tournament for the vacant DEEP middleweight title as well as a lightweight title bout between Kazunori Yokota and Pang Sung Hwan.

Leonard Garcia Talks Recent Arrest


Leonard Garcia weighs-in for The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

World Extreme Cagefighting featherweight Leonard Garcia, who was recently arrested along with twelve other members of an alleged drug trafficking organization in Lubbock, Texas, claims that he is completely innocent and plans to fight the charges filed against him.

Garcia made the comments in a recent interview with our friends at MMA Junkie.

Garcia’s arrest came after a four-year investigation that found a cocaine ring spanning from El Paso to Lubbock. Federal indictments allege that all who were arrested conspired to sell cocaine for a period of time stretching back seven years.

However Garcia maintains that he was not involved in any wrongdoing.

“I am fighting it because there is nothing but someone saying I was involved,” Garcia said. “I hope to have a smile on my face after this is said and done, but I feel like I’m in a fight for my life. I’d like to tell my fans to stick with me and pray that the liar in this case tells the truth.”

Garcia was released from jail on bond but is required to return to court on May 5th. Three of those arrested could face up to 40 years in prison and up to a $2 million fine. The others could face up to life in prison and up to a $ 4 million fine.

Garcia is best known for engaging in a three-round war with lightweight phenom Roger Huerta in Garcia’s debut with the Ultimate Fighting Championship last April. The Jackson’s Submission Fighting product recently knocked out highly touted featherweight Hiroyuki Takaya at a WEC event in February.

His status with the organization is still unknown at this time.

Controversy Clouds Suganuma Win at ShoXC


Jared Hamman stands in disbelief after being handed his first professional loss by Poai Suganuma. Photo by Tom Casino/EliteXC.

For the second consecutive time, the main event of a ShoXC: Elite Challenger Series show ended in controversial fashion after Poai Suganuma stunned Jared Hamman with an overhand right and then dropped him courtesy of a flying knee, causing referee Jon Schorle to quickly put a stop to the bout just fifteen seconds into it.

However a dazed Hamman quickly made it back to his feet, ready to continue, leading to a shower of boos from those in attendance at the Table Mountain Casino and Events Center in Friant, California. Both fighters voiced their desire to have a rematch during separate post-fight interviews, especially Hamman, who still doesn’t understand why the fight was stopped.

“I’m so mad right know,’’ Hamman said. “I don’t know what happened or why it was stopped. I wanted to keep fighting. I felt I could keep fighting. I don’t want to make excuses. I absolutely want a rematch.’’

A rematch may not come immediately but will likely take place in the near future according to EliteXC Live Events Vice President Jared Shaw.

“You can bet there will be a rematch in the near future,’’ Shaw said. “No one is more concerned for a fighter’s safety than we are, but this fight was just stopped too soon.’’

Continue reading "Controversy Clouds Suganuma Win at ShoXC"

CSAC Blocks Reis from ShoXC Fight


Wilson Reis. Photo courtesy of MMAPhotography.com

Update 5:49 PM: ProElite.com has since confirmed that Quach will indeed replace Reis. Still no word on why Reis was not permitted to fight.

MMA on Tap has learned that the California State Athletic Commission has not approved featherweight prospect Wilson Reis for tomorrow night’s ShoXC: Elite Challenger Series event at the Table Mountain Casino and Events Center in Friant, California. An official reason as to why the CSAC pulled Reis from the event is still unknown.

Five Ounces of Pain originally reported earlier this afternoon that Reis has been removed from his scheduled fight against Ultimate Fighting Championship veteran Doug Evans and will be replaced by Shooto veteran Bao Quach.

Quach last won a unanimous decision over Bobby McMaster at a ShoXC: Elite Challenger Series event in January. The Team Oyama product is currently riding a six-fight winning streak and has not lost since being knocked out by Wagnney Fabiano in June 2006.

Quach will be challenging Evans, who will be making his Elite Xtreme Combat debut after losing his only two fights in the UFC.

The event will be headlined by a light heavyweight clash between Jared Hamman and Poai Suganuma. King of the Cage lightweight champion Joe Camacho will also go up against Fabricio Camoes.

Gomi, Yamamoto Eye Summer Returns


Takanori Gomi celebrates after his win over Mitsuhiro Ishida at PRIDE Shockwave 2006. Photo property of PRIDE FC Worldwide.

Former PRIDE lightweight champion Takanori Gomi and pound for pound phenom Norifumi “Kid” Yamamoto have both reportedly informed the Japanese media of their respective intentions to return to action this summer.

The news comes from Sherdog’s Jordan Breen in his latest edition of the Koubousen Companion.

Gomi stated that he planned to compete at World Victory Road’s upcoming third “Sengoku” event on June 8th while in attendance at this past weekend’s All Japan Combat Wrestling National Championships and plans to begin training again later this month.

The 29 year-old returned to action after a year of inactivity, stopping Duane Ludwig at WVR’s inaugural event last month. Ludwig suffered a cut on the bridge of his nose that forced ringside doctors to prevent him from continuing.

Meanwhile Yamamoto informed the media that he hoped to return to the ring in June or July. His contract with Fight Entertainment Group will have “Kid” competing inside the confines of DREAM. He remains unsure of which weight he will fight at.

Yamamoto last stopped World Extreme Cagefighting veteran Rani Yahya with strikes at K-1 Premium 2007 Dynamite!! on New Year’s Eve.

Curran-Brown Not Signed…Yet


Jeff Curran weighs-in for WEC 29: Condit vs Larson. Photo property of World Extreme Cagefighting.

A heavily rumored bout between former WEC title contender Jeff Curran and newcomer Mike Brown will likely happen at World Extreme Cagefighting’s next event on June 1st, however contracts have not yet been signed.

In a recent interview with MMA Weekly, Curran revealed that WEC officials have informed him and Brown that they would be fighting each other but have yet to send out any paperwork that would set things in stone.

“I have been told and Mike has been told that we are facing each other, but we don’t have contracts yet,” Curran said. “That announcement will become official soon I am sure. I am just so ready to go fight again.”

Curran was last submitted by Urijah Faber in December in a failed bid for the WEC featherweight title. Before the loss to Faber, Curran was riding a six-fight winning streak and had won fifteen out of his last sixteen bouts stretching back to 2004.

After competing in smaller promotions for years, Brown had his coming-out party in July 2006 with a surprising unanimous decision win over longtime veteran Yves Edwards. Brown last submitted Manny Reyes Jr. at a Premier X-treme Fighting in December.

WEC 34 will also feature a highly-anticipated featherweight title clash between current champion Urijah Faber and former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver.

Report: Nogueira-Aldo Set for WEC in June


Alexandre Franca Nogueira throws a right hand at Shuichiro Katsumura at a K-1 Hero’s event in July 2007. Photo courtesy of FEG.

Former Shooto champion Alexandre Franca “Pequeno” Nogueira will return to action when he makes his World Extreme Cagefighting debut against fellow Brazilian Jose Aldo at the organization’s next event on June 1st.

The news comes from Sherdog.com, which has confirmed the fight with the camps of both fighters.

After upsetting Shooto star Noboru Asahi twice in his first three bouts, with the second giving Nogueira the featherweight belt, Nogueira would go on to hold championship gold for seven years until he was stripped of his title due to injury in May 2006.

Nogueira was long considered the world’s best fighter at 145 lbs until he dropped consecutive fights to Koutetsu Boku and Hideo Tokoro respectively. His last fight was a knockout win over Shuichiro Katsumura at the opening round of K-1 Hero’s middleweight tournament last July.

Aldo is currently riding a three-fight winning streak. He last won a unanimous decision over Shoji Maruyama at the Pancrase 2007 Neo-Blood Tournament Finals in July.

WEC 34 will feature a highly-anticipated featherweight title clash between current champion Urijah Faber and former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver.

Garcia Arrested in Texas Drug Ring (Updated)


Leonard Garcia weighs-in for The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Update 4:20 PM: Our friends at MMA Junkie are reporting that Garcia has been charged with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine according to the U.S. Department of Justice.

World Extreme Cagefighting featherweight Leonard Garcia was reportedly arrested along with twelve other members of an alleged drug trafficking organization in Lubbock, Texas.

The news comes from Lubbock’s KCBD NBC 11.

The arrests from after a four-year investigation that found a cocaine ring spanning from El Paso to Lubbock. Federal indictments allege that all who were arrested conspired to sell cocaine for a period of time stretching back seven years.

Garcia and the others are currently incarcerated in Lubbock County Jail. According to the report, three of those arrested could face up to 40 years in prison and up to a $2 million fine. The others could face up to life in prison and up to a $ 4 million fine.

Garcia is best known for engaging in a three-round war with lightweight phenom Roger Huerta in Garcia’s debut with the Ultimate Fighting Championship last April. The Jackson’s Submission Fighting product recently knocked out highly touted featherweight Hiroyuki Takaya at a WEC event last month.

WEC Announces Faber-Pulver for June


Urijah Faber weighs-in for WEC 28: Faber vs Farrar. Photo property of World Extreme Cagefighting.

World Extreme Cagefighting officially announced their self-proclaimed “most important featherweight bout of all-time” earlier today as WEC featherweight champion Urijah Faber will clash in a highly-anticipated fight against former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver on June 1st in Sacramento, California.

In addition to Faber-Pulver, newly crowned WEC bantamweight champion Miguel Torres will make his first title defense against undefeated top contender Manny Tapia in the co-main event. Former NCAA Division I wrestling champion Mark Munoz will also make his WEC debut at the event.

Faber remains undefeated inside the confines of the WEC, successfully defending his featherweight belt four consecutive times so far, including a submission win over top-ranked Jeff Curran in December.

However Pulver may provide Faber his toughest test to date, at least in terms of style. The Miletich Fighting Systems product joined the ranks of the WEC coming over from the Ultim ate Fighting Championship this past fall. Pulver made a splash quickly, needing just 35 seconds to submit Cub Swanson at WEC 31.

Despite rumors that the event would be the first WEC show to be broadcast on pay-per-view since Zuffa purchased the organization, it will indeed be shown on Versus.

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