Ben Rothwell. Photo by Tracy Lee. Courtesy of CombatLifestyle.com
Report: Rothwell-Rizzo to Happen at Affliction II
Former IFL heavyweight champion Ben Rothwell will attempt to bounce back from his first loss in three years when he reportedly takes on three-time UFC heavyweight title challenger Pedro Rizzo at Affliction’s “Day of Reckoning” event on October 11th in Las Vegas according to MMANews.com, which cites Affliction VP Tom Atencio as confirming the fight.
At Affliction’s debut show last month, Rothwell suffered a third-round knockout loss to former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski while Rizzo was defeated in a rematch against Josh Barnett, another former UFC title holder. Barnett knocked Rizzo out with a left in the second round of their fight.
WVR Announces Middleweight GP Participants
World Victory Road has announced four of the fighters that will compete in their inaugural middleweight grand prix, which will begin at “Sengoku V” on September 28th at the Yoyogi National First Gymnasium in Tokyo, Japan. Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos, Jorge Santiago, Kazuhiro Nakamura, Siyar Bahadurzada will all compete in first-round bouts.
Yuki Sasaki and Jorge Santiago weigh-in for Strikeforce: Four Men Enter, One Man Survives. Photo by Jon Swenson.
World Victory Road has announced that Ultimate Fighting Championship veterans Yuki Sasaki and Jorge Santiago will clash in a middleweight bout at the organization’s upcoming second “Sengoku” show on May 18th at the at the Ariake Coliseum in Tokyo, Japan.
The two were originally booked to face each other in the first round of Strikeforce’s middleweight tournament in November but Sasaki was pulled from the event after failing an an MRI exam. Santiago would go on to defeat both Sean Salmon and Trevor Prangley and win the tourney.
Sasaki has not fought since submitting Bo Guk So with an armbar at a DEEP event in July of last year. Before that the longtime Pancrase and Shooto veteran was unsuccessful in his lone bout inside the UFC, dropping a lackluster unanimous decision to Dean Lister.
After suffering consecutive knockout losses in 2007, Santiago bounced back in a big way last year. His Strikeforce middleweight tournament victory was preceded by a surprising submission win over Jeremy Horn. It was the first time that Horn had been forced to tap out in seven years.
The promotion announced yesterday that former UFC heavyweight champion Kevin Randleman and prospect Jim York would both be in action at the event.
A pair of lightweight fights were also already announced for the show: Satoru Kitaoka vs Ian James Schaffa and Eiji Mitsuoka vs Kwang Hee Lee. Roger Gracie, Yuki Sasaki, and Yoshihiro Nakao, who was originally reported as facing Mirko Cro Cop at last month’s DREAM event, are all expected to be in action.
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.”
MMA on Tap has learned that Sean Salmon will replace Yuki Sasaki in tonight’s middleweight tournament scheduled to take place as part of Strikeforce: Four Men Enter, One Man Survives event this evening at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, CA.
Sasaki failed an MRI exam yesterday and doctors decided to pull him from the tournament earlier this afternoon. Salmon will fight Jorge Santiago in the first round of the tournament.
Salmon was originally slated to face Dennis Hallman in the tournament’s alternate bout. No word on whether or not Hallman will be given a replacement opponent.
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.
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.
Bodog Fight Middleweight Champion Trevor Prangley may be considered the favorite to win California’s first-ever sanctioned mixed martial arts tournament, but Florida’s Jorge Santiago is prepared to upset the champ should they meet Friday, Nov. 16 at the HP Pavilion in San Jose.
“I’ll throw everything I have at him,” says Santiago. “I think I can beat him on the ground or standing up.”
Santiago (14-7) and Prangley (16-4) are two of the four men competing in the single-elimination middleweight tournament that will headline Strikeforce: Four Men Enter, One Man Survives, presented by Bodog Fight.
The other combatants are Yuki Sasaki (21-13-1) and Falaniko “Niko” Vitale (24-7). The winner of the tournament will have to get through two matches, with each bout consisting of two five-minute rounds.
A random draw to determine the match-ups will take place during the weigh-in, and although Santiago recognizes Prangley’s skills, he isn’t afraid to face him in the tournament.
“Trevor Prangley says he is one of the best 185-pound fighters in the world and I agree with him, but everyone has his day.”
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.
Anthony Njokuani def. Keyon Mike Jackson - KO (Knee)
Cristiano Marcello def. Hector Munoz - Submission (Rear Naked Choke)
Luis Arthur Cane def. James Damien Stelly - KO (Knee)
Jason Maxwell def. Thomas Schulte - Decision (Unanimous)
Lana Stefanac def. Franita Gathings - TKO (Strikes)
Carlo Prater def. Keith Wisniewski - Decision (Split)
Alex Andrade def. Fabiano Capoani - TKO (Strikes)
Ron Waterman def. Mario Rinaldi - TKO (Punches)
Jorge Santiago def. Jeremy Horn - Submission (Triangle Choke)
Pedro Rizzo def. Jeff Monson - TKO (Punches)
St. Petersburg, Russia - The Russian Red Devils capitalized on their comrades’ support to emerge victorious from Russia’s ICE Palace Arena on Saturday, April 14th in the most anticipated pay-per-view event of the year, BodogFight: Fedor Emelianenko vs Matt Lindland, Clash of the Nations.
The star-studded mixed martial arts card lived up to its billing, with Fedor Emelianenko, the #1 ranked heavyweight in the world taking on the #1 ranked middleweight, Matt “The Law” Lindland, in the main event. In the end, the sold out crowd, which included Russian President Vladimir Putin, got what they wanted, as their beloved champion improved to 26-1 after forcing his brave American challenger to tap out in the very first round.