News and Notes:
- Renzo Gracie recently accepted Frank Shamrock’s request for a rematch on MMA Weekly’s Sound Off:
Gracie was recently on MMAWeekly Radio to responds to Shamrock’s challenge. “I never get invited to a party that I didn’t show up. I’d love to do it again,” Gracie said excitedly. Anyone who knows Gracie knows that he never shies away from a challenge and that he has the heart of a lion. “I want to finish a fight that I never had a chance to finish. I think it will be a continuation of what we had in February.”
- Maurico Rua has stated that his leg injury is not as severe as many media outlets are reporting that he will still continue to train while undergoing physical therapy.
- Jason Gilliam will be replacing an injured Drew Fickett as Chris Lytle’s opponent at UFC 73.
- UFC Junkie is reporting that Renato “Babalu” Sobral will make his return to the Octagon at UFC 74 against David Heath.
- Jess Liaudin has announced that he will be training with Team Quest for his upcoming bout at UFC 75 in September:
“I wanted to go to [Las] Vegas to train with Randy [Couture],” Liaudin said. “I saw his new gym, and it looked great. Not only that, but everyone trains down there. Martin Kampmann offered to rent me his apartment because right now he’s back home having surgery on his knee. The only thing is that his apartment is about a 15-minute drive from the gym, and I don’t drive.”
“We looked around a number of different gyms,” Liaudin said. “I always wanted to go to Team Quest, but I didn’t really want to go to Oregon. Now Dan Henderson has a gym in California. My manager got in touch with them; you can stay in a house with other fighters, they come pick you up and take you to the gym and, for extra money, they even deliver food for us.”
- Justin Levens has signed a three-fight deal with Palace Fighting Championships.
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In a recent interview with The Oregonian, UFC president Dana White, confirmed that the UFC had reached a deal with Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and they were close to reaching a deal with PRIDE heavyweight ace Fedor Emelianenko.
“He’s signed and ready to roll,” White said. “You couldn’t meet a classier guy in your whole life. He will be so marketable.”
White also said he is moving close to signing a contract that would bring Pride heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko (26-1), widely considered the best fighter in the world, to the UFC.
A month ago, ChuteBoxe.com, reported that Mauricio “Shogun” Rua had signed with the UFC but the deal was never officially announced by the UFC.
News and Notes
- Our rumors page has been updated…
- A rib injury suffered while training with Miletich Fighting Systems is the reason why Corey Hill won’t be fighting on this weekend’s The Ultimate Fighter 5 finale according to his coach on the reality show, Jens Pulver. Pulver broke the news during a recent interview with CBS Sportsline:
Corey is injured. He hurt a rib and the thing was, he went home to visit with his family. It’s a pretty bad tear. I don’t know if he broke a rib or what was going on. But that’s the only reason. He was training hard, he was ready, he was pumped and then he injured himself about two weeks ago.
- Dave Meltzer of Wrestling Observer is reporting that the scheduled bout between Michael Bisping and Matt Hamill is still on:
Regarding rumors regarding the next UFC in London, England, Michael Bisping vs. Matt Hamill is still the scheduled match on that show. There are rumors regarding Bisping vs. Ken Shamrock, that may have been discussed but it is not the current plan.
- The New Jersey State Athletic Control Board has confirmed that this weekend’s bout between Ray Mercer and Kimbo Slice at CFFC 5 is an exhibition match. The fight will feature three five minute rounds and will not be judged by official judges from the state, the CFFC would have to bring in their own guys.
- ESPN is currently running an interesting piece concerning the MMA vs Boxing debate.
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News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated…
- Our coverage of UFC 72 is going to be great as usual. Expect an official preview, some tap selections (that includes celebrity predictions), weigh-in results, a media roundup, live blog, and much more…
- Nate Diaz and Manny Gamburyan defeated Gray Maynard and Joe Lauzon respectively last night to move on to The Ultimate Fighter 5 finals on June 23rd.
- Tagg Radio had PRIDE light heavyweight contender Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou on yesterday
to talk about fellow Team Quest teammate Dan Henderson’s remark about Sokoudjou getting a poor contract offer from the UFC:
I don’t deal with contract stuff, too much English for me. I just know from my manager and Dan that they were negotiating on my contract. I usually don’t want to get into too much detail. I tried to read my contract with Pride, it was too much for me so I let Team Quest handle that part of my career. They know better than me.
- Carlos Arias from the Orange County Register is reporting that UFC 76 will take place at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.
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Today MMA trainer extraordinaire, Sean Tompkins, appeared on The Fight Network radio to explain the advice he gave to Sam Stout at the beginning of the third round during his main-event bout with Spencer Fisher at UFC Fight Night 10. While answering the question Tompkins took the time to provide his thoughts on UFC color commentator Joe Rogan.
“No, absolutely it’s a motivational thing that as a trainer you doing things like that where your fighter is getting power shots to his chin. You don’t want him to fall back into a single punch or single kick series where he is going to get knocked out. What I wanted him to do was to continue with confidence that he was winning the exchanges therefor he would continue to throw punches in four or six hand combos and at any time you throw hands in fours or sixes you’ve got a chance at knocking the person out. I mean contrary to the coaching expertize of Joe Rogan, who I think is one of the biggest douchebags in the sport, I’m very confident in what I do and how I do it. I think I don’t really have to prove it to anybody, that is completely the reason why I did it.”
For those of you unaware when Stout came to his corner at the end of the second round, Sean Tompkins said to him, “Don’t get caught in a war, lead hook-cross, don’t get emotional with him. We are winning every exchange.” Rogan immediately responded saying, “That’s interesting, Sean Tompkins says “we’re winning every exchange”, I completely disagree. Obviously he is probably trying to pump up and give him confidence but it might be a good thing to say.”
“I’m sure he is just trying to pump up Sam Stout but he needs to put some urgency into his game.”
Later on in the third round, Mike Goldberg stated that Sam Stout needed to go into desperation mode and Rogan responded by saying, “He should have already have been there. At the beginning of this round he should have been there. That’s the only thing I disagree with about Tompkins coaching him in his corner.”
UFC lightweight contender, Spencer “The King” Fisher, took time to call out fellow UFC veteran Joe Lauzon last night during his post-fight interview with UFC.com.
“I guess Joe Lauzon. He wants me and it gives me a chance to kill two birds with one stone. He beat my teammate and I beat his brother so it makes for a good storyline and I look to fight him.”
For those of you unaware, Joe Lauzon TKO’d Fisher’s good friend and training partner Jens Pulver at UFC 63: Penn vs. Hughes. Fisher then decided to return the favor when he TKO’d Joe Lauzon’s younger brother Dan at UFC 64: Unstoppable. Since then both fighters have been vocal about stepping into the octagon and settling the score.
WEC light heavyweight Ariel Gandulla (4-0) has officially joined forces with American Top Team to further his evolution as a mixed martial artist.
“I have been training with American Top Team (ATT), and decided to join them after I learn their style and philosophy about fighting because it is just like I used to train back in Cuba. I am proud to be here in the United States, in the best city and fans of the world. I am looking forward to continue fighting in the World Extreme Cagefighting (WEC), I hope I can reach the top level there so I can go into the Ultimate Fighter Championship (UFC) with the best opponents in the world in my division, and hope to give a really good show to the fans.”
Gandulla made his WEC debut in May when he squeaked out a split decision victory over Gary Padilla. Gandulla will now have the opportunity to train with the likes of Charles McCarthy, Jeff Monson, Din Thomas, Marcus Aurelio, Denis Kang and many other world class fighters.
News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated once again…
- The always popular MMA on Tap Top Ten has been updated and was posted yesterday for everyone to break down and take in. Be sure to leave comments with any corrections, props, thoughts, and suggestions that you might have.
- Our latest edition of Rock the Vote has been posted - Who will be victorious in UFC 72’s main event: Rich Franklin or Yushin Okami? Be sure to add your pick…
Here are the results for our last poll:
Chuck Liddell: 25%
Mirko Cro Cop: 23%
Andrei Arlovski: 17%
Tim Sylvia: 17%
Gabriel Gonzaga: 8%
Randy Couture: 8%
Heath Herring: 2%
- Scott put together a nice mini-interview with Jonathan Goulet discussing Goulet’s recent win over Travis Axworthy this past weekend as well as his thoughts on John Alessio’s peformance on Sunday night. MMA Weekly caught wind of the piece and was going to ask Alessio about Goulet’s comments on last night’s radio show but Alessio failed to appear.
- The Fight Network is reporting that renowned grappler Marcelo Garcia is in California training with Team Quest this week. K-1 stated in a pre-fight press conference for Dynamite!! USA that Garcia would make his debut in September.
- Leonard Garcia has announced that he will be fighting on the finale of The Ultimate Fighter 5. Garcia did not say who his opponent will be.
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This past weekend UFC and TKO veteran Jonathan Goulet upped his record to 18-7 with an impressive knockout victory over Canadian middleweight Travis Axworthy. MMA on Tap caught up with “The Road Warrior” to get his thoughts on the fight and to find out what’s in store for his future.
When asked to provide his thoughts on the fight Goulet said, “I was nervous because I had everything to lose but I was confident because of my good training. My coach told me before I entered the ring, “You haven’t kicked a guy in the head for a while, so do it tonight.” Unfortunately for Travis Axworthy, I did.”
As you can see in the video above, Goulet came out and after a quick shot he fired off a devastating high kick that left Axworthy (3-1) motionless on his back only 8 seconds into their headline bout.
“I kicked him in the head after I tried to take him down but I asked myself “What am I doing? Come on Jon, stay on your feet.”
After the fight, Goulet said, “I was looking for the promoter just to ask him if he was waiting for a murder giving me an opponent like him. Sorry to Travis, I don’t have anything against him but I already did what we saw.”
Goulet was originally scheduled to face Steve Vigneault for the TKO Welterweight Title but the fight was scrapped after Vigneault re-injured his knee. Axworthy decided to step in on short notice meeting Goulet in a middleweight affair, 15 pounds above Goulet’s original weight.
Since leaving the UFC, Goulet has gone 2-0 (1 NC) with victories over Travis Axworthy and Jesse Bongfeldt. Goulet was originally awarded a TKO victory over Thomas Schulte but the decision was overturned after Schulte’s camp filed a grievance with the Quebec Athletic Commission because Goulet earned the TKO after the round was over but the referee failed to stop the fight at the proper time.
What’s next for Goulet? Who would he like to fight?
“I want to be a champion. I’m thinking about the WEC Welterweight Title but first I have to fight July 14th in King of the Cage. John Alessio is back on track, after his fight when he won by guillotine choke he said it’s his move but I’m curious if he’d be able to apply a guillotine on me.”
For those of you unaware, Goulet and Alessio fought back in 2004 at TKO 18: Impact when Goulet took the unanimous decision victory. Next up for Goulet is a middleweight bout against Cory MacDonald at King of the Cage in Halifax on July 14th at the Halifax Forum.
Closing out the interview Goulet left a message for his fans:
“I’m not going to fight for TKO soon so stay tuned to my Myspace (www.myspace.com/jonathangoulet) because my goal at this time is to reach the top 5 in the world before the end of the year. Right now I’m 15th.”
The UFC has signed American Top Team lightweight Marcus “Maximus” Aurelio (14-4) to a four fight contract.
Great news for Marcus who gets to showcase his skills to a whole new audience. Marcus has a incredible Jiu-Jitsu, and is best known for his ZST Grand Prix tournament victories, and his stunning win over then PRIDE Champion Takanori Gomi.
Aurelio has spent the majority of his career over in Japan fighting for PRIDE and ZST. Aurelio holds victories over the likes of PRIDE lightweight ace Takanori Gomi, Rich Clementi, Daisuke Nakamura, and Naoyuki Kotani.