Randy Couture and Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Here are our predictions (after the jump, winners in bold) for UFC 102.
The event will be headlined by a heavyweight bout between former UFC heavyweight champion Randy “The Natural” Couture and former PRIDE heavyweight champion Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. Also on the card will be a light heavyweight attraction featuring Keith Jardine and Thiago Silva.
Feel free to leave your predictions as well in our comments section.
Jason MacDonald. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Here are your UFC quick hits for the evening of May 4, 2009.
— The UFC today announced a total of seven bouts that have been added to the card for UFC 101, which will take place on August 8 in Philadelphia. In no particular order: Amir Sadollah vs. Johny Hendricks, Kendall Grove vs. Ricardo Almeida, Josh Neer vs. Kurt Pellegrino, Tamdan McCrory vs. John Howard, Matt Riddle vs. Dan Cramer, George Sotiropoulos vs. Rob Emerson, and Danillo Villefort vs. Jesse Lennox. [UFC.com]
— Former UFC middleweight contender Jason MacDonald has been released from his contract according to his latest blog post for Sportsnet.ca. “I received an e-mail Saturday from the UFC, from their legal department, saying “my services were no longer needed” and “my contract has been terminated,” MacDonald said on the website. He is now expected to take a short hiatus before returning to action in Mark Pavelich’s Maximum Fighting Championship promotion this fall. [Sportsnet.ca]
— “Ultimate Fighter 8” cast member Krzysztof “The Polish Experiment” Soszynski will step in to replace an injured Houston Alexander against Andre Gusmao in a light heavyweight bout at UFC 98 later this month. Soszynski was just in action less than a month ago, scoring a first-round submission win over former WEC light heavyweight champion Brian Stann at UFC 97. [Twitter.com/UFC]
Brian Stann. Photo property of World Extreme Cagefighting.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship yesterday confirmed multiple previously rumored bouts that are scheduled to take place at the organization’s separate April events later this year.
Added to the UFC’s return to Canada on April 18 for UFC 97 were a total of four bouts. Former WEC Brian Stann will make his UFC debut against “Ultimate Fighter” alumnus Krzysztof Soszynski on the event’s televised main card.
Stann was slated to take on Steve Cantwell in the third career bout between the two this past December, but was forced out of the bout with a foot injury. Soszynski comes into the fight with one UFC win already under his belt in the form of a second-round submission of Shane Primm.
Jeff Curran. Photo property of World Extreme Cagefighting.
The past few days following the completion of Saturday’s UFC 93 event in Ireland have brought forth a slew of potential fight announcements involving upcoming events being put on by the UFC and WEC. Let’s get right to them:
— One-time WEC featherweight title challenger and longtime veteran Jeff Curran will reportedly make his bantamweight debut against Urijah Faber-protege Joseph Benavidez at WEC 40 on April 5 according to MMA Weekly. The event, which will likely take place in Chicago, will be headlined by WEC bantamweight champion Miguel Torres defending his title against Brian Bowles.
— Former International Fight League standout Bart Palaszewski will reportedly take on Richard Crunkilton in a lightweight bout at WEC 39 on March 1 according to MMA Junkie, which is also stating that the winner of the bout could receive a title shot against the winner of this weekend’s upcoming lightweight title fight between current champion Jamie Varner and top contender Donald Cerrone.
Terry Martin. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Terry Martin was victorious in his professional boxing debut this past weekend, knocking out opponent Ricardo Upchurch in the first round. Martin revealed last week that he would be trying his hand at boxing before his participation at Combat Fighting Championships’ May 17th event at the Metro Radio Arena in Newcastle, England.
TUF 8 Hopefuls Move On
This time around it’s the mainstream media that is breaking news when it comes to possible participants for the eighth season of “The Ultimate Fighter”.
According to the Winnipeg Sun, current TKO heavyweight champion Krzysztof Soszynski was informed over the weekend that he was one of 50 finalists picked to fly out to Las Vegas for a four-day training camp at the UFC’s training facility. The Boston Herald reports that Woody Weatherby will also be attending the camp.
Couture Won’t Rule Out Return to UFC
MMARated.com‘s Ariel Helwani conducted a must-read interview with UFC heavyweight champion Randy Couture recently. Couture touches on a bunch of different questions that MMA media and fans alike have been curious about since the whole ordeal between him and Dana White and company began.
Most interesting is the fact that despite all of the lawsuits and harsh words, Couture still won’t rule out the possibility of returning to the UFC one day:
I think if this whole thing has pointed out one thing to me it’s that I have an opportunity to control my own destiny a little bit and, potentially, through this process, change the way the fighters are paid and the way things are done in MMA and those are important things for me as a fighter. There are a lot of guys that are still scratching out a living and all the cards are held by the promotions. And, certainly, the most powerful promotion in the landscape is the UFC. So, would I say “never will I fight for the UFC,” well, I am not going to say “never” because there are circumstances where things could change but that’s the way I feel right now.
Hong-Man Choi Headed to the Army
According to Zach Arnold of Fight Opinion, Hong-Man Choi will head to the South Korean army training center later this month due to a mandatory requirement to serve his country. Because of his size, Choi won’t serve in battle, but is expected to be out of MMA action for at least three years. More here.
Melvin Guillard weighs-in for UFC Fight Night 9. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
While there were only small organizations putting on shows last night in the world of mixed martial arts, quite a few of them had plenty of notable names competing. Here is a full list of results from a few shows that took place.
TFC 2: Feel the Pain
The Fight Club based out of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada put on their second-ever event last night at the Edmonton Event Centre. In the evening’s main event, Maximum Fighting Championship veteran Nick Penner made quick work of newcomer Bobby Kalmakoff, stopping him with strikes less than a minute and a half into the first round.
Nolan Clark def. Alex Bogle - Submission (Gogoplata)
Phil Wark def. Tony Bibby - Unanimous Decision
Curtis Demarce def. Tim Brown - Submission (Armbar)
Trevor Daley def. Kevin Logan - TKO (Strikes)
Larry Lytle def. Richard Menard - TKO (Strikes)
James McCutcheon def. Cody Graber - Submission (Armbar)
Tim Smith def. Dan Walders - Submission (Rear Naked Choke)
Jason Alexander def. Kevin Dolan - TKO (Cuts)
Markhaile Wedderburn def. Neil Berry - Submission (Rear Naked Choke)
Nick Penner def. Bobby Kalmakoff - TKO (Strikes)
RITC 105: Friday Night Fights
Melvin Guillard moved back up to the welterweight division and won a unanimous decision over Eric Regan at last night’s Rage in the Cage show in Phoenix, Arizona. The former cast member of the second season of “The Ultimate Fighter” is currently on a hiatus from the UFC, who has allowed him to fight in smaller shows before returning to the promotion.
J.T. Wells def. Logan Hopp - Submission (Ankle Lock)
Jesse Barrett def. Bill Blackwell - TKO (Strikes)
Cody Pearce def. Steve Renner - Submission (Rear Naked Choke)
Victor Meza def. Daniel Seaney - Submission (Rear Naked Choke)
Jade Porter def. Steve Maulstby - Unanimous Decision
Doug Moore def. Ray Robinson - Submission (Choke)
Gabriel Casillas def. Tushuma Nahiwawa - Submission (Armbar)
Luke Hodges def. Antoni Weeden - KO (Punch)
Joe Cronin def. Jason Trevino - Split Decision
Melvin Guillard def. Eric Regan - Unanimous Decision
Highlights of Kim Couture’s Muay-Thai match at an Xtreme Couture smoker last weekend courtesy of RawVegas above.
Who’s Your Favorite UFC Ring Girl?
Go ahead and vote for who you think is the hottest of the trio. Rachelle Leah, Arianny Celeste, and Edith Larente are all ready to receive your vote. I went with Arianny but that’s just me. Make sure you hurry up and get your picks in. It is the end of the week you know.
Jordan Replaces Richards in YAMMA Tournament
UFC veteran Kevin Jordan has replaced Rex Richards in YAMMA Pit Fighting’s upcoming eight-man heavyweight tournament next month according to the latest fight card on the organization’s official website.
Jordan was submitted by Paul Buentello and knocked out by Gabriel Gonzaga before being released from the UFC. Since then Jordan has gone 2-1. His last fight was a submission win over Carlos Morena at a Battle Cage Xtreme show last October.
AFL: Erupption Filled With UFC Veterans
The American Fight League will hold an event titled “Erupption” tonight at the Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky that will feature four veterans of the Ultimate Fighting Championship competing on the card. Junior Assuncao, Rory Singer and Dan Christison will all be in action in separate fights.
Diego Saraiva will go up against Joe Ammerman for the AFL lightweight title in the night’s main event.
Vigneault to Travel to Aruba for TKO 33
TKO Championship Fighting veteran Stephane Vigneault will be fighting on the organization’s next card in Aruba according to a report from our friends at TKO Xtreme.
After a near two-year hiatus from active competition, Vigneault made his return at TKO 31: Young Guns in December but ended up being submitted by lightweight prospect Ben Greer. Vigneault bounced back with a TKO win over Daniel Ferguson last weekend.
MMA on Tap has learned that TKO Heavyweight Champion Krzysztof Soszynski will not be defending his title against former champ Icho Larenas at TKO’s next event in February.
The Fight Network is reporting that Soszynski has signed on to compete under the EliteXC banner in the same month. An opponent for Soszynski has not yet been announced.
With Soszynski now fighting in another promotion, it will be close to a year and a half in February since Soszynski won the title from Larenas. Soszynski has yet to defend his title yet alone fight in TKO since then.
No word yet on whether or not Stephane Patry and company are planning on doing something about the heavyweight title situation but it doesn’t seem that Soszynski is coming back anytime soon.
Jason “Mayhem” Miller and Frank Trigg were both victorious last night in their respective bouts, setting up a potential rematch of their ICON Sport middleweight title bout that took place just one year ago.
The 6,754 that packed into the American Airlines Center in Dallas, Texas saw a main event between Miller and Tim Kennedy live up to expectations as a very competitive bout. Kennedy came away with the first round on the scorecards, using superior striking and wrestling to keep Miller at bay. Kennedy came close to ending the fight when he secured Miller’s back and had an extended amount of time to try and sink in a rear naked choke. The opportunity was foiled when the horn sounded to end the round.
Both fighters came out of the gate firing away with punches and kicks to start the second. Kennedy (8-2) once again took control of Miller (20-5) from behind but Miller was able to reverse the position and put Kennedy on his back. Miller fired away with punches and elbows that opened up a nasty cut on the bridge of Kennedy’s nose. “Mayhem” started to pull away in the final stanza after securing an early takedown.
Kennedy’s cut was checked by ringside doctors on two different occasions but the bout was permitted to continue both times. The fight was restarted on the feet by the referee after the second check of the cut and gave Kennedy the opportunity to take Miller down. However Kennedy was unable to generate much offense because of multiple submission attempts by Miller. Miller rolled Kennedy to his back and pounded away on his opponent until the end of the fight. The judges convened and their scorecards all matched up as Miller was awarded a well-earned unanimous decision, finally avenging a loss to Kennedy earlier in his career.
When asked who he would like to take on in his next fight, Miller hysterically stated that he wouldn’t mind fighting HDNet Fights owner and famed billionaire Mark Cuban for each other’s wallets. While Cuban won’t be standing across the cage against Miller in his next fight, Trigg most likely will be.
Marcus Lanier def. Lee King - Submission (Armbar)
Liam McCarty def. Jason House - TKO (Cut)
Jay White def. Patrick Castillo - Submission (Armbar)
Nissen Osterneck def. Freddie Espiricueta - Submission (Strikes)
Corey Mahon def. Chris Bowles - Submision (Armbar)
Pete Spratt def. Tristan Yunker - TKO (Cut)
Krzysztof Soszynski def. Robert Villegas - Disqualification
Yves Edwards def. Alonzo Martinez - Submission (RNC)
Frank Trigg def. Edwin Dewees - Submission (Kimura)
Jason Miller def. Tim Kennedy- Unanimous Decision