Lightweight

UFC 75 Conference Call Notes

UFC President Dana White hosted a conference call earlier today in preparation for the upcoming UFC 75: Champion vs Champion event set to take place on September 8th from London, England. The fighters featured on the call were UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Quinton Jackson, PRIDE Middleweight and Welterweight Champion Dan Henderson, Michael Bisping, and Matt Hamill through the use of an interpreter.

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UFC 74 Fighters Test Clean for Steroids

The Nevada State Athletic Commission has announced that all ten fighters tested for performance enhancing drugs after UFC 74 passed with flying colors. The results of the tests for drugs of abuse will be released in the coming weeks.

The ten fighters that were tested: Patrick Cote, Randy Couture, Alberto Crane, Gabriel Gonzaga, Kendall Grove, Antoni Hardonk, Roger Huerta, Josh Koscheck, Frank Mir, and Georges St. Pierre.

CKA: Aug 29, 2007

News and Notes

- Our rumors section has been updated…

- We are planning on posting an updated MMA on Tap Top 10 at some point this week.

- If you haven’t already, be sure to check us out on myspace.

- K-1 Hero’s and their parent company FEG held a press conference on Tuesday announcing two additional bouts and a new opponent for Ikuhisa Minowa.

Kazushi Sakuraba will be fighting at the event on September 17th but it won’t be against rumored opponent Denis Kang. Instead Sakuraba will be taking on Katsuyori Shibata. Also announced was a middleweight bout between PRIDE veterans Zelg Galesic and Dong Sik Yoon.

Ikuhisa Minowa will no longer be taking on Ralek Gracie as Gracie was forced to pull out of the bout for undisclosed reasons. Minowa will now face Kevin Casey, who will be making his professional MMA debut.

- So the real reason why Andrei Arlovski isn’t being booked by the UFC has finally been revealed - He only has one match left on his contract and the UFC won’t use him until he signs an extension.

Steve Sievert of The Houston Chronicle comments:

The big Belarusian is currently on the UFC sidelines because he has only one match left on his contract. As we know (see Brandon Vera), the UFC doesn’t make key bouts with a fighter who could be on his way out of the organization. After talking with Joe Silva last weekend, that’s actually a possibility.

While the UFC matchmaker stopped short of saying the organization doesn’t need the former heavyweight champ, comments such as “where else is he going to go” and the contract “has to make sense for us” send a clear message as to who has the upper hand in the ongoing negotiations. The UFC won’t book Arlovski until the contract issue is resolved.

Arlovski (11-5) wants a big payday. However, the harsh reality is he’s a mediocre 2-2 in his last four and just hasn’t been impressive since 2005. A year ago, the UFC couldn’t afford to let Arlovski walk. Today, the heavyweight division has ample fire power, and doesn’t need Arlovski to make big fights.

- Cub Swanson has announced via his myspace page that his fight with Jens Pulver has been rescheduled for November 3rd.

Fighting Jens Pulver in WEC November 3rd at the Hard Rock in Vegas. Pulver had a knee injury so we had to push the fight back.

- Sam Caplan wants people to stop stealing content from his site. You let me know if it happens again Sam, I’ll take them out…

Radio Schedule

12-1 PM - Tagg Radio
1-3 PM - The Savage Dog Show
3-4 PM - Fight Network Radio
3-5 PM - The Beatdown
9-10 PM - MMAWeekly’s Sound Off
11 PM - Knockout Radio

Edwards Brings “Thug-Jitsu” Back to Bodog

With 44 professional fights to his credit, 30-year-old Yves Edwards (Pictures) is well known to most mixed martial arts fans. The Bahamas-born Texan has been ranked among the world’s top lightweights since the turn of the century.

Edwards’ impressive record (31-12-1) has suffered a few blemishes of late, however, with a disappointing TKO loss (doctor stoppage) to Joe Stevenson (Pictures) in July 2006, followed by a defeat to Mike Brown, who won a unanimous decision in Bodog Fight: St. Petersburg.

Looking to get back to his winning ways, Edwards takes on Florida’s Jorge “Gamebred” Masvidal (10-2) on an all new episode of Bodog Fight: New Jersey this Tuesday, August 28 at 11 p.m. / 10 p.m. Central on ION television and in Canada on The Fight Network.

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UFC 74 Fighter Salaries

The Nevada State Athletic Commission has announced the official fighter salaries from UFC 74.

Half of Renato Sobral’s total purse has withheld by the NSAC pending an investigation and review of his extended submission held on opponent David Heath after Heath had already tapped out and referee Steve Mazzagatti ended the fight.

Randy Couture: $250,000
Georges St. Pierre: $140,000
Frank Mir: $66,000
Renato Sobral: $50,000
Gabriel Gonzaga: $45,000
Roger Huerta: $34,000
Joe Stevenson: $32,000
Marcus Aurelio: $30,000
Patrick Cote: $24,000
Thales Leites: $18,000
Clay Guida: $14,000
Kendall Grove: $12,000
Josh Koscheck: $10,000
Antoni Hardonk: $8,000
Kurt Pellegrino: $8,000
David Heath: $6,000
Ryan Jensen: $4,000
Alberto Crane: $4,000

Total Payroll: $755,000

Couture Defies The Odds Once Again

Randy Couture did it again.

For the second time in as many fights, Couture shocked the world and defeated a challenger that was supposed to run him over. This is nothing new to Couture. He’s been an underdog for the majority of his career. However after two huge wins over two dominate heavyweights, can Couture be an underdog any longer?

Couture dominated challenger Gabriel Gonzaga over two rounds and an assault of strikes on the ground two minutes into the third forced referee Herb Dean to stop the fight, allowing Couture to retain his UFC Heavyweight Title. Gonzaga laid in the Octagon, bloodied and exhausted, in front of the 11,118 in attendance at the Mandalay Bay Events Center. It was a sight that many did not expect to see.

Gonzaga put himself on the map with a vicious knockout of Mirko Cro Cop this past April at UFC 70. A single headkick from Gonzaga left the supposed best striker in MMA unconscious on the mat. Couture said that he had developed the perfect strategy to beat Gonzaga during training. Gonzaga (8-2) stated that he found that Couture (16-8) had a fatal flaw in his game. It was Couture that ultimately won the chess match.

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UFC 74: Respect Quick Results

Clay Guida def. Marcus Aurelio - Split Decision
Thales Leites def. Ryan Jensen - Submission (Armbar)
Frank Mir def. Antoni Hardonk - Submission (Kimura)
Renato Sobral def. David Heath - Submission (Anaconda Choke)
Patrick Cote def. Kendall Grove - TKO (Strikes)
Joe Stevenson def. Kurt Pellegrino - Unanimous Decision
Roger Huerta def. Alberto Crane - TKO (Strikes)
Georges St. Pierre def. Josh Koscheck - Unanimous Decision
Randy Couture def. Gabriel Gonzaga - TKO (Strikes)

UFC 74 Weigh-In Results

Here are the official results from the UFC 74 weigh-ins.

Thales Leites weighed in at 188 lbs, 3 lbs over the 185 lb limit at middleweight. He currently has two hours to lose the extra weight. Since his fight against Ryan Jensen is a non-title bout, he will be permitted to weigh-in at 186 lbs if need be. We will be sure to have an update on the situation as soon as we get the information.

Update 9:30 PM: Leites made the required weight within two hours and will be permitted to fight tomorrow night.

Randy Couture (228.5 lbs) vs Gabriel Gonzaga (252 lbs)
Georges St. Pierre (170 lbs) vs Josh Koscheck (170 lbs)
Joe Stevenson (155 lbs) vs Kurt Pellegrino (155 lbs)
Patrick Cote (184.5 lbs) vs Kendall Grove (184 lbs)
Roger Huerta (155 lbs) vs Alberto Crane (155 lbs)
Marcus Aurelio (155 lbs) vs Clay Guida (155 lbs)
Frank Mir (255 lbs) vs Antoni Hardonk (244 lbs)
Renato Sobral (204 lbs) vs David Heath (205 lbs)
Thales Leites (188 lbs) vs Ryan Jensen (185 lbs)

Report: Saraiva to Replace Mohr

UFC Junkie is reporting that Diego Saraiva will replace the injured Nate Mohr and take on Jeremy Stephens at UFC 76.

Saraiva has lost his last two UFC bouts, dropping unanimous decision victories to both Dustin Hazelett and Jorge Gurgel at UFC 67 and UFC 73 respectively.

Mohr was forced to pull out of the bout after suffering a broken hand during a recent training session.

The Top 10 Fighters Not Under Contract With Zuffa

While Zuffa has signed a wealth of talent over the past few months, they haven’t locked up every top fighter just yet, including the world’s best pound-for-pound fighter. Here’s your guide to the top ten fighters that currently aren’t under contract with Zuffa (UFC/WEC) courtesy of Scott and myself…

1. Fedor Emelianenko (26-1-0-1) – The best fighter in the world, period. He has beaten a who’s who of heavyweights from around the world and is looking pretty much unstoppable at this point. The only thing we have against him is that he doesn’t fight often enough but it’s technically not his fault anyway. Both K-1 and the UFC are vigorously attempting to sign the hottest free agent on the market right now. Old rumors had him going to the UFC while the latest set has him staying in Japan. Only time will tell where Fedor is going to end up.

2. Josh Barnett (20-5) – Probably the second biggest FA on the market, Barnett hasn’t ruled out signing with any organization. He’s an extremely talented heavyweight and a former UFC Heavyweight Champion at that. Has split a pair of fights with Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira. His ‘Achilles’ heel’ seems to be Mirko Cro Cop - Barnett has lost to him in three straight tries. Has the skill set to beat anyone in the world. Has said that he would love to return to the US but the guy is a legend in Japan.

3. Matt Lindland (20-5) – The one fighter that the UFC should have never let go. Lindland was set to challenge Rich Franklin for the UFC Middleweight Title until the UFC terminated his contract because of an unapproved sponsor being on his shorts. Lindland has won 5 out of 7 fights since then - his only losses have been against Quinton Jackson and Fedor who both compete in higher weight classes than “The Law”. Has said that he currently does not want to be locked up by a single organization.

4. Takanori Gomi (27-3-0-1) – Gomi was the top ranked lightweight in the world for what seemed like forever until he was submitted by both Marcus Aurelio and Nick Diaz in less than a year. His losses have come against the cream of the crop and he’s beaten just about everyone else out there. Gomi is the current PRIDE Lightweight Champion as well the winner of the PRIDE Lightweight Grand Prix in 2005. He has stated that he has no interest in leaving Japan to compete at this time and has publicly said he is interested in signing with K-1.

5. Denis Kang (27-8-1-1) – Reports have Kang signing with K-1 any day now. If he does indeed ink a deal with K-1, he is expected to take on Kazushi Sakuraba in September in what could possibly be Saku’s final fight. Kang put himself on the map by fighting his way to the finals of the PRIDE Welterweight Grand Prix, defeating Akihiro Gono, Murilo Rua, and Amar Suloev before ultimately losing a split decision to Kazuo Misaki. He is widely considered one of the most well-rounded middleweights in the world today.

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