News and Notes
- Kevin Iole of Yahoo! Sports has a direct quote from UFC President Dana White where White states he is working on an immediate rematch between Michael Bisping and Matt Hamill:
And, while they’re at it, the UFC honchos should mandate a rematch between Bisping and Hamill.
White said the rematch is “a no-brainer and I’m going to be on it right away.”
Having them fight again in a place where an official athletic commission will oversee the affairs is the only way to remove the stench surrounding UFC 75.
However FOX Sports is reporting that Bisping will most likely drop down to the middleweight division. I’m not so sure that Hamill could make 185 lbs.
- Staying with the quotes, it seems that Patrick Cote wants both Chris Leben and Terry Martin and would like to face the winner of their bout in December:
“I just want to prove to everybody that I was robbed last time [against Leben],” says Cote. “I will not leave the fight in the judge’s hands next time.”
“I just don’t like Martin,” says Cote. “He has a big mouth. Terry Martin has said he’s the next big thing at 185 and that he will be champion. He thinks he has heavy hands because he knocked out Jorge Rivera. But if you watch that fight, you see Rivera was already off balance and he caught him. He’s a one-dimensional fighter. He doesn’t shoot for the leg; he tries to trap you against the cage. I can use my reach against him, and I have good footwork and hands. It will be a long night for him if he wants to try and trap me against the cage.”
- The Ryan Bennett Memorial Fund is auctioning off Randy Couture’s autographed gloves from UFC 74. Bidding ends on Thursday.
- MMA Weekly is reporting that Fabio Silva will take on Melvin Manhoef at the September 17th K-1 Hero’s event.
- The British Medical Association is attempting to ban MMA in the country of England. Apparently it’s nothing to worry about as the BMA has also been trying to ban boxing since 1982. That obviously hasn’t worked.
- Mirko Cro Cop has told Croatian reporters that he suffered a broken rib in the first round of his recent loss to Cheick Kongo over the weekend.
- Zach Arnold has found that Hidehiko Yoshida may be appearing at K-1’s annual Dynamite show on New Year’s Eve. Now the big question: Will he fight or just be a guest?
Sankei Sports is reporting that Hidehiko Yoshida is considering an offer to appear at the K-1 Dynamite New Year’s Eve event. Yoshida was quoted as saying that he wanted to fight before the end of the year and that he is leaving any future career decisions to the J-ROCK office to determine. J-ROCK’s stance is that if PRIDE is dead, then Yoshida should be a free agent.
Roughly 10,631 ticket holders entered the Yokohama Arena in Yokohama, Japan to witness the finale of the Hero’s 2006: 187 lb tournament. All of the fighters showed and people got their moneys worth when in the end Japanese fighter Yoshihrio Akiyama was crowned the tournament champion.
The semi-finals of the tournament started with a battle between Yishihiro Akiyama and Kestutis Smirnovas. Even though Smirnovas lost his quarterfinal fight against Kazushi Sakuraba he was still granted a spot as Sakuraba was unable to fight due to medical conditions. Akiyama earned his way to the semi-finals by defeating Taiei Kin by armbar.
Akiyama looked great from the start attacking Smirnovas with vicious leg kicks that left their mark. Smirnovas’s body began to show that damage during the middle of the round as a nice welt formed on the left thigh of Smirnovas.
Akiyama worked hard to avoid Smirnovas’s combinations and then late in the first he was able to connect with a leg kick that momentarily dropped Smirnovas. He then quickly charged in and nailed Smirnovas with a head kick followed by a combination which secured him a spot in the finals.
Next on the slate was a battle between Melvin Manhoef and Shungo Oyama. Oyama’s semi-final birth came after he earned a decision victory over Rodrigo Gracie. Manhoef earned his way to the semis by beating Crosley Gracie.
This fight proved to be a quick one alot like the earlier semi-final bout. Both fighters entered the ring hungry and ready to engage. After a short feeling out process Oyama attempted a few wild strikes which were unsuccessful. The much bigger Manhoef then decided to attack as he rushed forward with a combination of kicks and punches which eventually sent Oyama down and out.
With the win Melvin Manhoef earned his was to the finals of the 187 lb tournament with a battle against Akiyama bubbling for later in the fight.
The finals of the 187 lb tournament followed the path of many of the earlier fights. It was quick and exciting. One thing to take note of was Akiyama decided to wear his gi against Manhoef unlike his earlier fight against Smirnovas.
Both fighters felt each other out early and then Manhoef charged in with wild combinations that looked to hurt Akiyama. The scene was all too familiar but Akiyama was able to withstand the barrage and take Manhoef to the canvas.
When they returned to their feet Akiyama kept the fight in the clinch until Manhoef decided to go for a slam which ended up being the beginning of the end. Manhoef took the fight to the canvas but he put his opponent in a prime position which allowed Akiyama to secure an armbar. Manhoef was forced to tap at 1:58 of the first round crowning Yoshihiro Akiyama the Hero’s 187 lbs tournament champion.