Hardcore Championship Fighting

Report: Former HCF Exec Announces “Resurrection”

Hector Ramirez. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Dave Houshair, the former co-owner of the recently folded Hardcore Championship Fighting, has reportedly announced his quick promotional return to the world of mixed martial arts with a June 20th co-promotional fight card that will take place at the Max Bell Centre in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

The news comes from The Fight Network’s Great Fight North column, which reports that the show will be a joint-effort between Houshair’s Raw Combat promotion and Legacy Fighting Championships.

A slew of notable veterans will be on the card. PRIDE Fighting Championships alumnus Travis Galbraith will take on former UFC light heavyweight Hector Ramirez in the night’s main event.

Former UFC middleweight title challenger David Loiseau will attempt to continue his road back from a string of bad losses when he takes on fellow HCF veteran Andrew Buckland. An LFC featherweight title bout between Len Tam and Chris Desaultes is also slated to take place.

The current card for the event is as follows:

Travis Galbraith vs. Hector Ramirez
David Loiseau vs. Andrew Buckland
Carlo Prater vs. Garett Davis
Derrick Noble vs. Jason Maxwell
Ryan Heck vs. Kurt Southern
Nathan Gunn vs. Max Dalsin
Adam Farr vs. Dami Egbeyemi
Mike Rowbotham vs. Mike Zvonick

Report: Hardcore Championship Fighting Folds

David Loiseau served as the figurehead of HCF. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Calgary-based Hardcore Championship Fighting has reportedly gone out of business according to recent comments made by promotional CEO Keith Crawford.

The news comes from Sherdog.com, which was informed by Crawford that the organization had been forced to fold after a potential sale to Canadian television network The Score fell apart.

Crawford believed that the promotion, which had essentially overtook TKO Championship Fighting as Canada’s premiere mixed martial arts show after signing a slew of big-name fighters over the past year, expected HCF to move into contention to become MMA’s next big company with the move.

An official announcement regarding the purchase was expected to come at some point this weekend, when Crawford and company were slated to have held their latest show, which based on the fighters rumored to have been participating, would have been the organization’s biggest showing to date.

The fates of those fighters under contract with HCF are unknown at this time. Crawford has also mentioned that he and business partner Dave Houshiar will continue promoting inside the sport, but as separate entities.

Evening News and Notes: April 15, 2008

Yoshiro Maeda. Photo property of World Extreme Cagefighting.

Less than 24 hours after it was announced that Manny Tapia would be forced out of his scheduled WEC featherweight title bout against Miguel Torres due to a knee injury, Pancrase veteran Yoshiro Maeda has confirmed to Sherdog.com that he will indeed come in as an injury replacement and take on Torres in his first title defense.

Maeda, the current featherweight King of Pancrase, knocked out Charlie Valencia with a body kick in February and has not lost since being submitted by former WEC title contender Joe Pearson at a PRIDE event in November 2006.

HCF Postpones May 10th Event

From a press release sent out today:

Due to the fact that the due diligence process has been extended on our impending re-structuring, we are officially postponing our May 10 fight card. We hope our exclusive fighters will understand. We are confident this new corporate structure will be in every athlete’s best interest.

The event was slated to be Hardcore Championship Fighting’s biggest yet.  A light heavyweight bout between Renato “Babalu” Sobral and Mauricio Alonso has been signed. Assuerio Silva, David Loiseau, and Antonio Rogerio Nogueira were also rumored as possible participants at the event.

CBS Announced Next CBS Event Date

Adam Swift of MMA Payout points out that CBS has announced July 26th as the date for the second Elite Xtreme Combat televised show on the network. No additional information was revealed concerning the event however. A list of possible fighters or a potential venue for the show are still unknown at this time. The event will be the second on a current four-show contract over the next twelve months with CBS.

Kang Talks Discussions With UFC

From our friends at MMA Junkie:

“Yes, we were negotiating with the UFC,” Kang said. “I would have loved to fight in the UFC. I would love to fight in North America and not have to travel 12 hours for a change. At the end of the day, it came down to where I want to be represented at the moment and who was offering the best contract.”

The best contract, it seems, was one that would allow the half-Korean fighter to compete in South Korea’s SpiritMC organization on an annual basis. Kang has fought 10 times in the organization since 2004, winning all 10 fights, and is still the SpiritMC heavyweight champion.

“SpiritMC was only asking that I fight for them once a year,” Kang said. “That’s one of the things that I really, really wanted to do—to keep my SpiritMC title and keep my fan base in Korea, which is really important to me.”

Emelianenko in Talks to Fight in HCF in May

Aleksander Emelianenko. Photo courtesy of MFC M-1.

Alexander Emelianenko, the younger brother of top heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko, has stated that he is currently in talks to return to Hardcore Championship Fighting for a potential second fight inside the confines of the promotion at their upcoming May 10th show.

Emelianenko recently revealed the news to M-1 MixFight.

“Today (April 7th) I will talk with a promoter, to try to negotiate a fight in Canada on May 10th,” Emelianenko said in the interview. “I don’t know an opponent yet. To win and to become the best in the world, those are my upcoming plans.”

The native Russian was victorious last week, stopping Brazilian Silvao Santos with strikes to earn his first win of 2008 at the latest edition of the M-1 Challenge. Emelianenko won his only HCF fight to date back in October, submitting fellow veteran Dan Bobish.

HCF CEO Keith Crawford announced last month that the organization has been purchased. ProElite, the parent company of Elite Xtreme Combat is rumored as the potential buyer. An official announcement regarding the purchase is expected to come sometime before the event in May.

The show will likely be the biggest in HCF’s brief history. A light heavyweight bout between Renato “Babalu” Sobral and Mauricio Alonso has reportedly already been signed. Assuerio Silva, David Loiseau, Antonio Rogerio Nogueira, and Nick Thompson have also been rumored as possible participants at the event.

Report: HCF Close to Inking Nick Thompson

Photo courtesy of Bodog Fight.

Current Bodog Fight welterweight champion Nick Thompson is reportedly close to signing with Alberta-based Hardcore Championship Fighting.

The news comes from a report by The Fight Network.

Thompson, a Minnesota Martial Arts Academy product, has won eleven straight fights since losing to Karo Parisyan in April 2006. He last defeated Fabricio Monteiro via unanimous decision at World Victory Road’s inaugural show titled “Sengoku” earlier this month.

It’s still unknown whether or not Thompson is now a free agent after fighting overseas. Thompson fought outside of Calvin Ayre’s project for the first time since October 2006.

Thompson’s potential signing comes just one week after Hardcore Championship Fighting CEO Keith Crawford announced that the promotion has been purchased. ProElite, the parent company of Elite Xtreme Combat is rumored as the potential buyer.

An official announcement regarding the purchase is expecting to come sometime before the organization’s next event in May.

Loiseau Decisions Gouwenberg in Quebec

David Loiseau weighs-in for UFC 51: Super Saturday. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Former UFC middleweight title contender David Loiseau returned to his winning ways, earning a unanimous decision over British Columbian Todd Gouwenberg at Hardcore Championship Fighting’s “Crow’s Nest” event last night in front of a raucous crowd at the Robert Guertin Arena in Gatineau, Quebec.

Loiseau used superior striking to stifle Gouwenberg on the feet, handing out additional punishment in the form of the devastating elbows that made Loiseau one of the most exciting fighters to watch during his second stint with the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Loiseau’s performance was so dominating in the eyes of the ringside judges that all three officials scored at least one round 10-8 in his favor.

Hector Ramirez earned a hard-fought unanimous decision over fellow UFC veteran Rob MacDonald in one of the undercard bouts while Gideon Ray fell to local product Nabil Khatib.

Complete event results are as follows:

Antonio Schembri def. Daniel Grandmaison - Submission (Armbar)
Rodrigo Ruas def. Marcus Vinicios - Submission (Arm Triangle)
Jameel Massouh def. Myles Merola - Unanimous Decision
Bill Boland def. Michal Hamrsmid - TKO (Strikes)
Dan Hornbuckle def. Andrew Buckland - Submission (Armbar)
Brent Beauparlant def. Amir Rahnavardi - Unanimous Decision
Sarah Kaufman def. Molly Helsel - TKO (Strikes)
Nabil Khatib def. Gideon Ray - Unanimous Decision
Hector Ramirez def. Rob MacDonald - Unanimous Decision
David Loiseau def. Todd Gouwenberg - Unanimous Decision

Loiseau Leading HCF to New Heights

David Loiseau weighs-in for UFC 51: Super Saturday. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

For the longest time, it seemed that Stephane Patry’s TKO Championship Fighting was Canada’s premiere mixed martial arts organization. After all, with the likes of Georges St. Pierre and Patrick Cote headlining shows and an unofficial working partnership with the Ultimate Fighting Championship going for them, who could disagree?

However as TKO’s stars started to move on to bigger and better things, APEX Entertainment Group and Championship Fighting Series quietly merged together to form Hardcore Championship Fighting. Then came the signing a slew of big-name fighters. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira and Aleksander Emelianenko joined the fray and suddenly the tide began to turn.

With all signs pointing towards the organization likely being purchased by ProElite, Keith Crawford and company now focus on their latest event, named specifically after star middleweight David Loiseau, who will face Todd Gouwenberg in the main attraction at tomorrow night’s “Crow’s Nest” show.

For Loiseau, it’s a chance to get back on track. Consecutive losses forced the Canadian out of the UFC and he hasn’t fared much better outside of it lately either. Most recently, Loiseau fell victim to a bogus decision on the judge’s scorecards, a split decision that even opponent Jason Day felt went the wrong way.

“I was really disappointed about it but you know, you have to move on and keep rolling,” Loiseau said during a recent interview session. I think Jason knows that he didn’t win that fight. I’m sure a lot of people that have seen it know it too. But there’s nothing I can do about it now except focus on my next fight. I need to get back to winning.”

Continue reading "Loiseau Leading HCF to New Heights"

Report: Hardcore Championship Fighting Purchased

HCF: Destiny, February 2008. From phatmisiek on Flickr.

Hardcore Championship Fighting, which had essentially frog-leaped TKO Championship Fighting as Canada’s premiere mixed martial arts promotion after signing a slew of big-name fighters over the past year, appears to have been purchased by a new owner.

The news comes from a report by Sherdog.com, which has confirmed the sale with HCF CEO Keith Crawford.

“This announcement is the culmination of 10 years of hard work in combative sports, and I couldn’t be more excited,” Crawford said in the report. “What it’s going to do, I feel, is to put us right at number two with everybody else. Obviously the UFC is number one, and I believe that Elite XC, Strikeforce and ourselves are going to be number two when we make the announcement as to who has purchased us.”

An official announcement regarding the purchase is expecting to come sometime after the organization’s next event this weekend in Gatineau, Quebec.

I’m just going out on a limb here, but based on Crawford’s quote, ProElite is probably the likely buyer.

Report: Silva Signs Five-Fight Deal With HCF

Assuerio Silva weighs-in for UFC 70: Nations Collide. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

After vacating his King of Pancrase Heavyweight title, Assuerio Silva has reportedly agreed to a five-fight deal with Hardcore Championship Fighting.

The news comes from a recent interview with Silva by Brazilian web site Tatame.

“I’ve signed with HCF and my first fight will be on May 10th,” Silva stated in the report. “I’m not sure who it will be against yet. I believe that they’ll probably give me an opponent next month, after their next event on March 29th.”

Silva has not fought since he defeated Tatsuya Mizuno for the vacant King of Pancrase Heavyweight belt last May. He was originally slated to make his first title defense this past fall but opponent Kestutis “Tiger” Arbocius pulled a no-show just hours before the event was set to take place.

According to Silva, his decision to sign with another promotion stems from a lack of activity while with Pancrase and wanting to field better offers from different organizations. In the end, Silva felt that HCF was the best opportunity for him.

“I vacated the belt because I wanted to wait for offers from a better organization,” Silva said. They started making offers but I still wasn’t fighting for three to four months. The last time I was supposed to fight, the opponent didn’t even show up and I haven’t fought since. HCF made an offer and contacted Pancrase. We’d agreed to vacate the title and now I’m headed elsewhere.”

Touch of gloves to MMA Weekly for the find.

Report: Sobral to Make HCF Debut in May

Renato Sobral weighs-in for UFC 74: Respect. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

After signing a contract with the promotion over five months ago, former UFC light heavyweight title contender Renato “Babalu” Sobral will finally make his debut for Hardcore Championship Fighting on May 10th.

The news comes from a report by Gleidson Venga of Sherdog.

Sobral will reportedly be fighting Mauricio Alonso at the event. Since dropping a decision to Flavio Alvaro last April, Alonso has gone on to win three consecutive fights, his last being a decision over Rafael Motta at a Predador Fight Championship event in December.

“The fight was an opportunity that I wanted, a great event,” Alonso said in the report. “Facing “Babalu” is great because he is an excellent athlete. I will strive in training to get very good.”

Sobral has only fought once since being released by the Ultimate Fighting Championship in August following his refusal to release an anaconda choke on opponent David Heath after he had already submitted during their bout at UFC 74. He submitted Rodney Faverus in December.

“Babalu” was slated to take on Vernon White in the main event of January’s infamous WCO: The Return event, which was scrapped due to insufficent funds gathered by the promoters of the event. The 32-year-old also currently has deals to fight for Xcess Fighting and Strikeforce as well.

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