Photo by Esther Lin/EliteXC.
The Mixed Martial Arts Fighters Association (“MMAFA”), on behalf of its members, forwarded a demand letter today to EliteXC Live, a California corporation (“EliteXC”). MMAFA seeks an acknowledgment from EliteXC that its promotional agreements have been terminated.
While hopeful that litigation will be unnecessary, a draft of complaint has been prepared and forwarded to EliteXC officials. According to the letter, EliteXC has a limited time in order to voluntarily provide the release to all of the fighters, and if EliteXC refuses, MMAFA will file a complaint.
On November 10, 2008, in an action initially spearheaded by agent Ken Pavia, a group of agents, including Ed Soares and Monte Cox, collaborated to “pool resources” to fight the proposed auction of and transferability of EliteXC’s promotional agreements.
Frank Mir. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
- A planned middleweight title fight between Anderson Silva and Thales Leites might not be the only championship bout at UFC 97. Fighters Only Magazine is quoting UFC President Dana White as saying that the heavyweight title unification rematch between Brock Lesnar and Frank Mir could take place in April, which is when the UFC plans to return to Montreal, Quebec, Canada for the second time in the last two years. “Mir took little damage in his fight with Nog, and Lesnar wants to fight him soon, so April may be the time and place for that,” White said.
- Canadian welterweight Jonathan Goulet has told Sherdog.com that he has been offered a fight against Tamdan McCrory for April’s UFC 97 event also, but will be unable to accept the bout until Thursday at the earliest due to medical clearance needed to begin training again after injuring his right knee in his recent loss to Mike Swick at the UFC’s “Fight for the Troops” event in December. McCrory is coming off a loss as well - He fell to Dustin Hazelett via submission at UFC 91. Keep in mind thought that the UFC has yet to secure a date at the Bell Centre because of the Montreal Canadiens’ pending playoff schedule.
Ken Pavia. Photo by Tracy Lee/CombatLifestyle.com.
Just like ProElite itself, multiple mixed martial arts agents are coming together to attempt to block a public auction announced for November 17 in which Showtime Networks will attempt to sell off the remaining assets of ProElite and everything under its banner in order to repay two defaulted promissory notes for $4 million that Showtime lent to ProElite over the last year.
Ken Pavia, who represents a slew of notable names in the world of MMA, has teamed up with the likes of Ed Soares, Monte Cox, and Cesar Gracie and issued a formal press release indicating that they are all prepared to challenge whoever purchases the contracts of their fighters in court.
The complete release is after the jump.
Chris Lytle. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Longtime veteran Chris Lytle has reportedly signed a four-fight contract extension with the Ultimate Fighting Championship and his new deal will go into effect on October 18th, when he takes on fellow welterweight Paul Taylor at UFC 89: Bisping vs. Leben, which will take place at the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham, England.
The news comes from our friends at MMA Junkie, who have confirmed the two signings with Lytle’s manager, Ken Pavia.
“The UFC expressed satisfaction with his past performances, and they extended his deal by four fights,” Pavia said in the report. “Chris has a home in the UFC. He’s comfortable fighting for the UFC. Both sides will benefit from the deal. We’re very happy with it.”
While Lytle hasn’t been the most consistent fighter in terms of winnings, he remains one of the most exciting athletes on the UFC roster. Lytle has lost two out of his last three fights, most recently dropping a bloody unanimous decision to standout wrestler Josh Koscheck earlier this month.
Meanwhile Taylor has split his first four fights with the UFC. After stopping Edilberto de Oliveira with strikes in his debut last year, Taylor went on to lose two straight contests to Marcus Davis and Paul Kelly respectively. He last won a close split decision over Jess Liaudin last month at UFC 85: Bedlam.
Jake O’Brien weighs-in for UFC 65: Bad Intentions. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Just over a month since losing his first professional fight to former champion Andrei Arlovski, promising heavyweight prospect Jake O’Brien has apparently been released from the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
O’Brien’s manager, Ken Pavia, confirmed his client’s release from the promotion with our friends at MMA Junkie.
O’Brien, a former standout wrestler at Purdue University, won three out of his four bouts with the organization, including an upset over current title contender Heath Herring at UFC Fight Night 8 in January 2007.
He now appears to be headed to the California-based Palace Fighting Championship, which sports a slew of former UFC veterans. Although nothing is official as of yet, O’Brien has agreed in principle to a deal and is expected to sign a contract in the coming days, which will have him make his PFC debut in July.
“Getting Jake was a great opportunity for us,” PFC President Christian Printup said in the report. “We get to work with one of the most promising young athletes today. We’ve had the pleasure of working with him in the past. He’s very personable and talented, and he’s good for the sport.”
Printup and company announced details for their next upcoming event on May 8th over the weekend. The event will feature four championship fights. Diego Saraiva will defend his PFC lightweight belt against Brian Cobb in the main event.
Joe Riggs weighs-in for UFC 60: Hughes vs. Gracie. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Joe Riggs has successfully undergone surgery to repair nerve damage after re-injuring his surgically-repaired back in a middleweight contest against prospect Cory Devela at last weekend’s “Strikeforce at the Dome” event in Tacoma, Washington.
The news comes from a report by Josh Gross of Sherdog, who learned that Riggs underwent a procedure in which four scopes were used to freeze three separate nerves in his lower back that were pinched by a bulging disc, caused by a Devela judo throw during the bout.
Immediately tapping out after he hit the mat, it was obvious that Riggs was in extreme pain. Devela landed two right hands flush to a downed and submitting Riggs before the fight was halted by the referee. A stretcher was called into the cage and Riggs was taken to nearby St. Joseph Medical Center where he remained overnight.
Riggs was also expected Riggs to go up against against Joey Villasenor at Strikeforce and EliteXC’s joint event on March 29th at the HP Pavilion in San Jose. However his participation at the show no looks to be very doubtful according to Riggs’ manager, Kev Pavia. Pavia noted that he will attempt to have Riggs rematch Devela when he returns.
“Make sure Devala doesn’t fight anyone else,” Riggs told Pavia in the report. “I don’t want him exposed before I smash him.”
Joe Riggs weighs-in for UFC 60: Hughes vs. Gracie. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Strikeforce Vice President Mike Afromowitz has announced that Joe “Diesel” Riggs and Eddy Ellis will now compete at the upcoming “Strikeforce at the Dome” event later this month as replacement opponents.
The show, which features a main event between former NFL lineman and popular Japanese fighter Bob “The Beast” Sapp going up against K-1 kickboxing star and undefeated professional boxer Jan “The Giant” Nortje, will take place on February 23rd at the Tacoma Dome in Tacoma, Washington.
Riggs will replace Cedric Marks, who was forced to pull out of his bout against Cory Devela after suffering a should injury during a recent training session. Riggs was expected to return to action in a potential bout against Joey Villasenor at Strikeforce and EliteXC’s joint event on March 29th at the HP Pavilion in San Jose.
However our friends at MMA Junkie are reporting that Riggs will compete at both shows.
“Joe stepped in to fight Cory, but he will still be fighting Joey next month,” Riggs’ manager Ken Pavia told them.
Ellis will be taking the place of Duane “Bang” Ludwig who has opted to sign on to face former PRIDE lightweight champion Takanori Gomi at World Victory Road’s “Sengoku” event instead of facing welterweight Steve Berger, whom Ellis will now take on.
The event will feature a total of ten bouts. The BodogFight-sponsored event will also be televised on HDNet.
Phil Baroni walks to the cage at Strikeforce: Shamrock vs Baroni in June 2007. Photo by Jon Swenson.
World Victory Road announced last week that Phil Baroni would be taking on Sanae Kikuta at the promotion’s inaugural event, “Sengoku”, on March 5th.
Then came the news from Ken Pavia, Baroni’s agent, that the fight against Kikuta wasn’t signed and that Baroni still didn’t decide if he will even accept the fight.
Well now it appears that the fight might be a go after all, at least according to MMA Weekly.
They’ve confirmed through the American Kickboxing Academy that the fight is indeed signed and Baroni will be making the trip to Japan.
According to Ricardo Mendoza, Ken Pavia isn’t involved in the contract discussions when it comes to the Kikuta fight and it’s AKA’s management team that’s doing the talking. Zach Arnold discusses whether or not Pavia has exclusive rights when it comes to Baroni’s offers.
Above is the latest from The Garv who discusses the newly signed Kimbo Slice-Tank Abbott fight and how dangerous Miami is. I’m guessing that Will Smith is full of crap.
UFC Announces Nakamura-Emerson
The UFC has announced that a lightweight bout between Keita Nakamura and former Ultimate Fighter cast member Rob Emerson for UFC 81: Breaking Point next month.
Nakamura has not fought since losing a unanimous decision to Drew Fickett at UFC Fight Night 9 in April of last year. Nakamura also dropped a decision in his UFC debut against Brock Larson at UFC Fight Night 7.
Fresh off of his second stint in jail, Emerson will be making his first appearance inside the Octagon since his infamous fight against Gray Maynard at The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale where he tapped out due to a rib injury and Maynard knocked himself out slamming Emerson to the ground.
While bout agreements have not yet been signed, both Cheick Kongo and Heath Herring are expected to face off in a heavyweight bout at UFC 82 in March according to a report from MMA Mania.
Juanito Ibarra, one of Kongo’s trainers, has stated that his client is already training in preparation for the bout:
“Kongo’s here at my house already getting ready for the fight,” said Ibarra. “This is going to be his year. Kongo’s got all the talent to be a heavyweight champion real soon, I truly believe that. Heath’s a tough opponent and this is going to be a big test.”
UFC Releases Radev and Hightower
No, there hasn’t been an official announcement by Dana White and company. Instead the news comes inadvertently from Ken Pavia’s journal about his dieting adventure with Luke Cummo via MMA Junkie:
The day needed a pick-me-up so I called UFC matchmaker Joe Silva to check the progress of my guys’ fights. He said he was still working on it but then informed me they would be releasing two of them, Jordan Radev and Richie Hightower.
Apparently Radev has already been booked to fight Hector Lombard at Cage Fighting Championship’s third event on February 15th in Sydney, Australia.
Ryan Bennett Memorial Fund Reminder
While there aren’t any items currently up for auction for the Ryan Bennett Memorial Fund, remember that you can always donate directly to the fund by visiting it’s official website.
Any fighters that are interested in donating items that can be auctioned off such as autographed pictures, shorts, gloves, or anything else should contact Randy Harris at email@example.com
Remember that all proceeds from the auctioned items go directly to the Ryan Bennett Memorial Fund.
Marcelo Garcia has joined American Top Team. MMA Junkie is reporting that UFC Fight Night 13 will most likely take place on April 2nd at a site yet to be determined in Colorado. The Nevada State Athletic Commission corrected the attendance and revenues stemming from UFC 79 yesterday. Scott White has a good piece on David Loiseau’s return. John Philapavage tries to revive Mirko Cro Cop’s career.
12-1 PM EST - TAGG Radio
1-3 PM EST - The Jordan Breen Show
2-3 PM EST - The Lights Out 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
As you can see above, Chris Fries and The JDH of MMA News fame will premiere their “Lights Out Show” this afternoon on TAGG Radio at 2 PM EST.
Fightlinker also has the newest edition of The Low Blow out.
There’s no looking back for the Palace Fighting Championship.
After giving the mixed martial arts community one of the very best events in Central California history in October, Christian Printup and the PFC are looking to raise the bar even further for Thursday, January 17th.
Printup, the Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino Entertainment Director, confirmed three blockbuster PFC World Title fights for the Jan. card and also confirmed deals with a pair of elite fighters.
Maybe the biggest announcement is that of the PFC Lightweight Championship will be on the line. Interim champ Poppies Martinez (13-3) of Lemoore will tangle with Ultimate Fighting Championship veteran Diego Saraiva (9-6-1) of Atlanta.
“Diego Saraiva is a very exciting fighter. He’s a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt and he likes to bang. Poppies management and his head trainer, Urijah Faber, are excited about this opportunity for Poppies. Poppies has always just fought who was put in front of him and to this day the only fight he has ever asked for was the Cole Escovedo fight,” Printup said. “Saraiva is coming off three losses, but to really good fighters. I believe this fight is a career defining fight for both guys. Both guys are excited to fight each other. This is a great fight for PFC fans. These are the types of competitive match ups that the sport needs.”