News and Notes
- The Fight Network is reporting that Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson will face Mike Rourke in his promotional debut at EliteXC: Renegade on Nov. 10 at the America Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas.
- Randy Couture’s agent spoke with The Fight Network yesterday shooting down rumors about Couture earning between $3.25 and $3.75 million per fight.
“Based on Randy’s contract, $3.25 to $3.75 million is not even in the ballpark,” Walker said. “It’s beyond exaggerated. He’d never make that. I know what he’s been paid; I’ve seen the pay-per-view numbers. The numbers that are being thrown around are not accurate. Whoever gave that information does not have their facts straight.”
- The Fight Network is also reporting that B.J. Penn, the UFC’s current number one contender for the lightweight title may not face either Sean Sherk or Joe Stevenson until early February.
- So is Joe Riggs in or out of the Strikeforce middleweight tournament?
Loretta Hunt says that he’s out:
Joe Riggs will not be one of the four contestants to compete in California’s first regulated four-man tournament scheduled for Nov. 16’s Strikeforce “Four Man Enter, One Man Survives” event at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif. Riggs declined the slot, however, and will seek a single fight on the card instead.
“It’s a timing thing,” said Riggs’ manager Scott Lewis. “He just fought two weeks ago and he doesn’t want to step into the cage two times in one night. We’re speaking with Scott Coker [Strikeforce’s promoter] to see if we can get him a single fight that night. He loves working with Strikeforce and is looking to get on that card.”
However Sam Caplan reports that Riggs is still undecided:
When contacted by ProElite.com, Riggs did confirm that his status for the tournament is currently uncertain but did not rule out the possibility of competing in it.
According to Riggs, his former agent, Ken Pavia, committed him to the tournament without receiving proper consent. Riggs now has new representation and is evaluating the opportunity. He indicated that he could ready to make a decision on whether he will compete in the next several days.
- Be sure to check out our newest feature ‘Break It Down’ where John and I provide our thoughts and predictions on every fight set to take place Saturday night at UFC 77: Hostile Territory.
- Don’t forget to cast your vote on our latest edition of ‘Rock the Vote’.
- UFC veteran Elvis Sinosic will replace Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos at Cage Rage 24. Sinosic will be stepping up to face British fighter Paul Cahoon.
- Adam Smith will appeal his positive tests for steroids, marijuana, and cocaine with the CSAC.
- Eddie Alvarez has told Sam Caplan that he’s been informed to prepare for a possible rematch with Nick Thompson in December.
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Mike Russell of The Fight Network has learned through Jack Shields, Jake Shields’ father and manager, that his son will be fighting fellow welterweight Mike Pyle on November 10th at EliteXC’s next event.
“Mike is a great fighter, and Jake has wanted to fight him for a while,” the elder Shields said. “He’s training hard for this fight and is really looking forward to this opportunity.”
Ken Pavia, Pyle’s manager also told Russell on Friday afternoon that the fight was just about “a done deal”.
Sam Caplan originally broke the news that Shields would be fighting as part of EliteXC’s next card earlier this week.
My guess of Pyle as Shields’ opponent was right too apparently.
Forrest Griffin wishes you a good morning.
News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated…
- Luke Thomas of Bloody Elbow is reporting that the The Ultimate Fighter 7 will focus solely on the middleweight division:
UFC matchmaker Joe Silva made an appearance at the Combat Sports Challenge in Richmond, VA this past weekend where he announced to the crowd that the next season of The Ultimate Fighter will focus exclusively on the middleweight class. No further details are available at this time. However, if ultimately true, this would be a boon to a comparatively weak division. Stay tuned.
- Fight Opinion via MMA Movement is reporting that renowned grappler Rondalo “Jacare” Souza has announced that he has signed with the UFC.
Souza’s manager, Andre Cabral, apparently made the announcement at a recent Amazon Challenge event and was then later interviewed by a Brazilian news station.
Souza currently sports a professional MMA record of 5-1. He is a veteran of Jungle Fight, fighting in that promotion on four separate occasions. His lone loss came at the hands of Jorge Patino in 2003.
- Rafael Cordeiro of Chute Boxe has stated that Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos will fight at the next K-1 Hero’s event in October and then at Cage Rage 24 in December.
- MMA Junkie is reporting that Renato “Babalu” Sobral has signed Ken Pavia as his new agent:
Renato “Babalu” Sobral, who recently signed with Strikeforce after the UFC terminated his contract, has become the latest client of Ken Pavia’s MMA Agents sports agency.
Pavia told MMA Junkie of the signing late last night.
Other fighters that Pavia has recently added to his stable also include Cyrille Diabate, James Thompson, Carmelo Marerro, Todd Moore, and Carlo Prater according to the post.
- Fightlinker is passing along it’s own insider information concerning Tito Ortiz and his potential opponent at UFC 78:
I guess we’re at that size now where we start getting tips on stuff. On Saturday night, Tito Ortiz was at the Little Creek Casino in Shelton, WA. and got on the mic to say “Blah blah blah blah, my next fight will be against Wanderlei Silva or Rashad Evans”
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Sherdog is reporting that Falaniko Vitale has agreed to terms on a deal that will have him compete in both K-1 Hero’s and Strikeforce over the next few years.
Vitale’s manager, Ken Pavia, confirmed the signing last night:
“We tried to take as professional a course as we could during negotiations,” said Pavia, who spoke with ProElite about a deal for Vitale since June. In the end, the manager indicated the K-1/Strikeforce offer was more attractive for Vitale because the agreement yielded “more money and provides international exposure.”
Sherdog also stated that Vitale is expected to compete on either the K-1 Hero’s card on September 17th or the September 29th Strikeforce event at the Playboy Mansion.
After nearly not fighting at all, Mike Swick and Jonathan Goulet are now signed to fight each other at UFC Fight Night 11 in September.
We reported yesterday that Chris Leben had backed out of his scheduled bout against Swick at the event and that Swick had caught wind of Goulet’s comments towards him, stating that he didn’t accept the fight involving the two and was scared.
Swick denied the claims and stated that he was never offered a fight against Goulet. Goulet is saying otherwise:
“Ken Pavia, my new manager, called me yesterday and asked me to fight Mike Swick in place of Chris Leben,” Goulet said. “He called me back two hours later and said Mike Swick didn’t accept [the fight], but I don’t think it was Swick [who declined]; I think it was his management.”
Goulet also states that after hearing that Swick apparently turned down the fight, it was David Loiseau who gave him the idea to call Swick out on the internet:
“I called David Loiseau, because we were both excited about the [potential] fight,” Goulet said. “He told me to write some things on Sherdog and other forums, and I did. Mike Swick saw what I wrote and accepted the fight.”
It has been confirmed that the fight will take place at welterweight. Goulet has spent the better part of this year fighting at 185 lbs instead of his natural weight of 170 lbs. This fight will be Swick’s debut at welterweight.
- Former UFC Heavyweight Champion Tim Sylvia has stated on his official blog that he has started training again and hopes to be fighting in October.
- Mark Bocek, who will be making his UFC debut this Saturday against Frankie Edgar has stated that he spent the majority of his time training for the fight with Greg Jackson’s camp in New Mexico.
- K-1 has announced the updated card for it’s Hero’s 9 event on July 16th:
Caol Uno vs Katsuhiko Nagata
Kazuyuki Miyata vs Vitor Ribeiro
Hideo Tokoro vs Kultar Gill
Gesias Calvancanti vs Andre Dida
Alexandre Franca Nogueira vs Shuichiro Katsumura
Katsuyori Shibata vs Ralek Gracie
Dong Sik Yoon vs Bernard Ackah
- Joe Riggs’s next fight will be on July 21st against Dan Chambers at Hardcore Fighting Championship’s debut event. Ricco Rodriguez and Ron Waterman will also be fighting for the third time on the card.
- Jason Day has announced that he may be fighting in the UFC in September according to The Fight Network.
- Countdown to UFC 73 will air tonight for the first time on Spike TV at 10:30 PM EST. UFC All-Access featuring UFC Lightweight Champion Sean Sherk will air immediately after that.
- Staying with the television theme, The History Channel has a new MMA-related show starting on July 20th titled “Human Weapon”:
The History Channel is jumping on the MMA bandwagon. The network will premier “Human Weapon,” at 10 p.m. Friday, July 20. Hosted by welterweight jiu-jitsu artist Jason Chambers and former professional wrestler Bill Duff, the show will traverse the globe as the two introduce viewers to various martial arts disciplines.
The series opens in iconic referee “Big” John McCarthy’s Ultimate Training Academy in Valencia, Calif. Episode one will focus on muay Thai, as Chambers and Duff travel to Bangok, Thailand, home to the martial art that made Wanderlei Silva and Mauricio Rua household names. From ancient killing techniques in the jungles to weapons training among the ruins of a Buddhist temple, the hosts will attempt to master aspects of the centuries-old discipline in hopes one of them can survive a bout with an international muay Thai champion.
Future episodes will take viewers to Russia to study Sambo (likely with PRIDE heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko) and to Israel to study Krav Maga, a fighting system developed in Europe and employed by various Israeli security forces. The series will also feature exhibition bouts, including one filmed yesterday with former UFC heavyweight champion Ricco Rodriguez.
- Ken Pavia, manager of Phil Baroni, has stated that Baroni will seek a second opinion from doctors on his pending surgery for a torn groin muscle and hernia.
MMAWeekly is reporting that Phil Baroni goes in for surgery this week to repair a hernia and torn groin muscle. Baroni suffered the injury early in the first round of his Strikeforce middleweight title fight with Frank Shamrock.
“[Phil’s] got three months of absolutely nothing,” said Pavia. He won’t be allowed to do any sort of training [during that time]. It’ll be 6-7 months before he can fight again.”
Today Baroni’s agent, Ken Pavia, appeared on “The Savage Dog Show” and gave a little information about the pre-fight drama and Baroni’s injuries.
“I don’t know if you guys knew this but the weigh-ins were Thursday and Monday he was informed by the CSAC that he wasn’t going to fight because additional medicals were mandated that he didn’t have time to do. So what he did was left Las Vegas on Monday - flew to Northern California and went through a battery of tests. Flew back to Vegas - flew then to Southern California for an additional battery of tests, I know because I drove him and we camped out at Dr. Gloveson’s (?) office at 6 AM in the morning because Phil couldn’t sleep he was so anxious to get over there. He went through an additional battery of tests there - flew back to Vegas and ultimately up to San Jose so at the day of the weigh-ins he was finally physically cleared to fight.”
“I know that Frank fought without an ACL which he allegedly hasn’t had for years and an MCL which was torn weeks prior. Phil additionally came in with an injured hamstring which caused him to injure his groin, a quartizone shot the week of the fight which numbed the area and if you watch the fight in the first 30 seconds what actually happens we later found out from the treating doctors is he tore the groin from the bone and a piece of the testes shot through hernia and if anybody has had a hernia they know it’s excruciating pain. Phil went back to the locker room and had what looked like a tennis ball protruding from his groin.”