Randy Couture

Report: Fedor Never Under Contract With M-1


From Ben Goldstein on Flickr.

As if all the drama involving Fedor Emelianenko and M-1 Global wasn’t already mind-boggling enough, a contract that reportedly never even existed between the two might do it for you.

A source close to both sides has come out and revealed to Sherdog that an actual deal was actually never signed between Emelianenko and the organization that announced plans to begin holding worldwide events under new ownership late last year but still has yet to do so.

The source also went on to say that the return of a $1.5 million signing bonus Emelianenko received as part of sending a letter of intent to compete inside the confines of the organization will likely pave the way for the former PRIDE heavyweight champion to offically become a free agent.

Apy Echteld, one of Emelianenko’s agents, revealed earlier this month that his client would become a free agent after his current contract with M-1 Global ran out. So was there or was there not a deal set in stone? We may never know.

Fans craving a showdown between Emelianenko and Randy Couture will be ecstatic to know that among the many organizations lining up to bid for the Russian’s services, the Ultimate Fighting Championship and Emelianenko’s management team have both confirmed that they are interested in speaking with each other once again in hopes of striking a deal.

However it should also be known that Couture, who was once said he would return to the UFC provided the promotion was able to sign Emelianenko, has now changed his tone.

When asked if he cared where a potential fight against Emelianenko would take place in a recent interview with M-1 MixFight, Couture stated that he didn’t have a preference, as long as it didn’t take place in the UFC.

“I don’t care where it happens as long as it doesn’t happen in the UFC,” Couture said in the interview. “Outside of that, I don’t care where it happens as long as it does happen.”

Fedor to Become Free Agent, UFC Interested?


From Ben Goldstein on Flickr.

It seems that the world’s top heavyweight’s relationship with M-1 Global will be over just about as soon as it started.

In a recent interview with ESPN the Magazine‘s Ryan Hockensmith, one of Fedor Emelianenko’s agents, Apy Echteld, has revealed that his client is set to become a free agent later this week after his current contract with M-1 Global runs out.

“Officially, yes, Fedor will be a free agent,” Echteld said in the report. Echteld also pointed out that a formal announcement from the organization will be released in the coming days.

However even more interesting than this is the fact that the Ultimate Fighting Championship and Emelianenko’s management team have both confirmed that they are interested in speaking with each other once again in hopes of striking a deal.

When asked if he would ever attempt to sign Fedor again, UFC President Dana White reportedly quickly said yes.

“Absolutely, 100 percent, in a heartbeat,” said White. “People think he’s the best, I don’t, not even close. But if it’s somehow possible, I would make it happen.”

“We’re open to a discussion,” Echteld confirmed with ESPN. “If everybody is willing to put a little wine in the water, then we have something to work with. There is space for this to happen.”

Now the big question: If this story is true and if the UFC is somehow able to sign Fedor, will Randy Couture come back even after all of the crap he has gone through in the last five months?

Touch of gloves to Five Ounces of Pain for the find.

CKA: Mar 5, 2008

Just as he did before his fight with Phil Baroni, Frank Shamrock is at it again, this time mocking Cung Le with the help of Shonie Carter.

Touch of gloves to Bloody Elbow for the find.

Herman Confirms Fight With Maia

While Demian Maia himself revealed that he would be fighting Ed Herman at UFC 83 in April back in January, questions about the fight have started popping up recently since the UFC has yet to officially announce the bout nor add it to the list of fights on their official website.

Well Ed Herman has now confirmed the bout in a recent interview with MMA Opinion:

CC. Rumors around the internet are that you are fighting Demian Maia at UFC 83, are these rumors true?

EH. Yes that’s true.

Rampage and Nike Pair Up

UFC light heavyweight Champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson will star alongside Cleveland Cavaliers guard LeBron James and various other athletes for the filming of a new Nike commercial entitled “Human Chain” this weekend according to Josh Gross of Sherdog.

Jackson becomes the second mixed martial artist in history to be featured in a Nike ad. Randy Couture and his infamous cauliflower ears were shown on TV in 1996, via a commercial called “Scars”.

MMA About to Get “Nasty”

Former professional wrestler and member of the WWF and WCW tag team champion “Nasty Boys” Jerry Sags is set to enter the world of MMA, where he will take on Alabama Fight Night veteran Jason Pharro in the near future.

The news comes from our friends at Koco Sports, who have confirmed that Sags will start in a reality television series titled “Lesson in Respect”. The show will document Sags’ training in the weeks and months leading up to his fight against Pharro.

So how did this whole idea get started? Apparently Pharro had some choice words to say about pro wrestling and Sags took exception.

“I respect MMA,” Sags told Koco Sports. “But I don’t get where this guy gets off disrespecting our business, I have friends who have died doing what we do, families missing husbands, fathers & brothers and this guy is going to disrespect them, who they were and how they earned their living. Well that pisses me off and I’m ready to rip this guy’s face off.”

Radio Schedule

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

Zuffa Scores Legal Victory Over Couture


Photo courtesy of ProElite.

Zuffa, LLC, the parent company of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, scored the first of what might be multiple legal victories over current heavyweight champion Randy Couture yesterday in Las Vegas District Court.

Judge Jennifer Togliatti granted a motion for a preliminary injunction that will now prevent Couture from lending his name or likeness to any of the proceedings going on later tonight at the International Fight League’s scheduled event, where the Xtreme Couture gym was expected to field a team to compete.

Prior to the hearing, Xtreme Couture officials that they would have their fighters compete under the “Team Tompkins” banner at the event instead.

The injunction also leaves Couture unable to corner fighters from the gym at the event as well. However Couture publicly stated weeks ago that Shawn Tompkins would be heading the team at the event anyway.

Zuffa alleged that the IFL had posted an image bearing Couture’s likeness on the front of their official website. According to Couture, his staff immediately contacted the IFL and asked that it be removed right away and it was done so.

The lawsuit filed against Couture by Dana White and company concerning Couture’s promotional contract with the UFC has not yet been heard in court. Couture has requested the dismissal of the lawsuit. A preliminary hearing will take place on March 6th and will determine whether or not there will be a trial.

Continue reading "Zuffa Scores Legal Victory Over Couture"

Couture Preliminary Injunction Decided Today


Photo courtesy of ProElite.

Nevada District Court Judge Jennifer Togliatti will rule later today on a preliminary injunction the Ultimate Fighting Championship and Zuffa has filed against current heavyweight champion Randy Couture.

Different from the lawsuit the organization filed against Couture, the injunction will attempt to block the Xtreme Couture gym from field a team that is currently slated to compete for The International Fight League tomorrow night in the promotion’s first event of the new year. It is likely that if Zuffa is victorious, Couture will be unable to corner fighters from the gym at the event as well. Couture has publicly stated that Shawn Tompkins would be heading the team at the event anyway.

Zuffa alleges that the IFL had posted an image bearing Couture’s likeness on the front of their official website. According to Couture, his staff immediately contacted the IFL and asked that it be removed right away and it was done so.

The lawsuit filed against Couture by Dana White and company will not be heard in court until March 25th. Couture has requested the dismissal of the lawsuit.

Zuffa’s case cites that Couture has made negative comments about the promotion and those involved with it’s management. They also stated that the comments have caused “irreparable damage” and that he has breached the employment contract he signed with the company. Xtreme Couture’s involvement with the IFL was also included in the suit via a claim that it is a direct violation of his contract with the UFC.

The suit will also attempt to collect up to $10,000 in damages from Couture and seek a restraining order that will prevent Couture from being involved with any other organizations that compete against the UFC. This comes after Couture resigned from the UFC last fall and has stated that he intends to sit out the remainder of his contract before fighting in another organization, hopefully against top-ranked heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko.

Mark Cuban and his HDNet Fights promotion filed suit in a Dallas, Texas district court in hopes of earning a declaratory judgment concerning the contractual status of Couture when it comes to his employment contract (the deal that dictates where Couture can fight).

The declaratory judgement will hopefully provide Cuban with an exact date as to when Couture’s contract expires with the UFC, if it expires at all.

HDNet Fights has also reportedly entered into a contractual agreement with Couture which will have the promotion attempt to set up a showdown between Couture and top ranked heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko later this year.

The deal will likely go into effect at the time of the expiration of Couture’s promotional contract with Zuffa. Without some sort of deal in place, a Texas court will likely throw out HDNet Fights suit filed against the UFC’s parent company last week.

It is interesting to note in Cuban’s claims against Zuffa that he points out “indefinite employment restrictions” such as the ones set forth against Couture by Dana White and company since his resignation from the organization last fall are against the law.

Report: Couture Joins HDNet Fights; Seeks Dismissal in Zuffa Case


Photo courtesy of ProElite.

HDNet Fights has reportedly entered into a contractual agreement with current UFC heavyweight champion Randy Couture which will have the promotion attempt to set up a showdown between Couture and top ranked heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko later this year.

The news comes from a report by Adam Swift of Sherdog and MMA Payout, who states that the deal will likely go into effect at the time of the expiration of Couture’s promotional contract with Zuffa. Without some sort of deal in place, a Texas court will likely throw out HDNet Fights suit filed against the UFC’s parent company last week.

The lawsuit, which was filed by HDNet Fights owner and popular billionaire Mark Cuban, was made in hopes of earning a declaratory judgment concerning the contractual status of Couture when it comes to his promotional contract (the deal that dictates where Couture can fight).

The declaratory judgement will hopefully provide Cuban with an exact date as to when Couture’s contract expires with the UFC, if it expires at all.

It is interesting to note in Cuban’s claims against Zuffa that he points out “indefinite employment restrictions” such as the ones set forth against Couture by Dana White and company since his resignation from the organization last fall are against the law.

In related news, Couture has also requested the dismissal of the pending lawsuit Zuffa filed against him last month according to Brian Knapp of The Fight Network.

The lawsuit cites that Couture has made negative comments about the promotion and those involved with it’s management. They also stated that the comments have caused “irreparable damage” and that he has breached the employment contract he signed with the company.

Basically the lawsuit was filed because Randy’s Xtreme Couture gym will be fielding a team that will compete at the IFL’s next event in Las Vegas on Friday, February 29th. The UFC is claiming that Randy’s gym being involved with the IFL is a direct violation of his contract with the UFC.

The lawsuit will also attempt to collect up to $10,000 in damages from Couture and seek a restraining order that will prevent Couture from being involved with any other organizations that compete against the UFC.

The motion will be heard on Tuesday, March 25th.

Couture believes that one of the promotion’s ideas in filing a lawsuit against him is to attempt to have him spend so much money on legal proceedings that he will have to come back and fight for them.

“It’s unfortunate that things have kind of degraded to that point,” Couture said in a recent interview with MMA Weekly. I’m sure that’s part of their ploy, to force me to spend enough money that I’ll have to come back and fight for them, which isn’t the case.”

Cuban, HDNet Fights File Suit Against UFC


From jdlasica on Flickr.

I kid you not, Mark Cuban has filed a lawsuit against Dana White and company.

Cuban and his HDNet Fights promotion filed suit in a Dallas, Texas district court in hopes of earning a declaratory judgment concerning the contractual status of current UFC heavyweight champion Randy Couture when it comes to his employment contract (the deal that dictates where Couture can fight).

The news comes from Adam Swift of Sherdog and MMA Payout, who reports in an “ironic” twist that Couture will actually technically serve as Zuffa’s co-defendant in the case.

The declaratory judgement will hopefully provide Cuban with an exact date as to when Couture’s contract expires with the UFC, if it expires at all.

If you haven’t already caught the feeling of what’s going on, the judge’s ruling may possibly give Couture and mixed martial fans around the world good news, that a potential date with Fedor Emelianenko could become a strong possibility.

Clearing up some confusion that occurred on this site earlier, it is actually Couture’s employment contract and its one-year non-compete clause that is at the center of Zuffa’s suit, and not his promotional contract that came when he agreed to be part of the announce team along with Mike Goldberg and Joe Rogan according to Swift.

A positive outcome for Cuban would be a huge for his HDNet Fights promotion to say the least as the Couture-Emelianenko showdown would likely take place under the banner of that promotion.

Zuffa filed a lawsuit in Nevada’s Clark County District Court against Couture in January, citing that Couture has made negative comments about the promotion and those involved with it’s management. They also stated that the comments have caused “irreparable damage” and that he has breached the emplyment contract he signed with the company.

Basically the lawsuit was filed because Randy’s Xtreme Couture gym will be fielding a team that will compete at the IFL’s next event in Las Vegas on Friday, February 29th. The UFC is claiming that Randy’s gym being involved with the IFL is a violation of his contract with the UFC.

The lawsuit will also attempt to collect up to $10,000 in damages from Couture and seek a restraining order that will prevent Couture from being involved with any other organizations that compete against the UFC.

Couture Finally Speaks Out on Lawsuit


Dana White congratulates Randy Couture after his win over Pedro Rizzo at UFC 34. Photo by Joshua Hedges.

Randy Couture finally spoke out on the lawsuit the Ultimate Fighting Championship has filed against him in a recent interview with MMA Weekly.

The current UFC heavyweight champion believes that one of the promotion’s ideas in filing the lawsuit is to attempt to have Couture spend so much money on legal proceedings that he will have to come back and fight for them”

“It’s unfortunate that things have kind of degraded to that point,” Couture said in the interview. I’m sure that’s part of their ploy, to force me to spend enough money that I’ll have to come back and fight for them, which isn’t the case.”

Throughout the months and months of battling back and forth between the two sides, one thing remains constant: Couture believes that his contracts with the UFC will eventually expire while Dana White and company have stated that he is locked in to the deal until he completes the remaining two fights left on it.

In an effort to now prove himself as being correct, Couture plans to get in touch with the state of Nevada to help his case:

“I’ve got a very good team of lawyers. I think we’ll basically have to get a declaration from the state of Nevada on what they interpret the contract as, but the way I see it, the contract is up in July,” Couture stated.

According to various sources, part of the lawsuit against Couture maintains that he breached his contract by cornering other fighters who train at his Xtreme Couture gym in Las Vegas while they are fighting in promotions other than the UFC.

I find it hilarious because there is a boatload of fighters currently under contract with either the UFC and WEC yet are constantly seen cornerning teammates in various other promotions. Not to name any names but I’ve seen Gray Maynard just about everywhere lately. Go ahead and ask Nick Thompson who was in his corner during his BodogFight title defense this past weekend and let me know if he doesn’t say Sean Sherk.

“They didn’t force me to breach of contract in any way,” Couture said. “I simply stated the position I’m in as far as fighting, which is to wait my fight contract out, find a way to make the Fedor fight happen myself. Like trying to ban my clothing line, and things like that that don’t really hurt me, they just hurt the athletes that we sponsor.

“I’m not worried about clearing my name,” Couture continued. “I haven’t done anything wrong. I’m simply wanting to pursue the profession that I’m in, which is fighting. And they’re trying to prevent me from doing that, so you tell me who’s wrong or right?”

UFC 81: Breaking Point Thoughts and Notes

Some thoughts and notes from this past weekend’s UFC 81: Breaking Point.

I was right and wrong

I did pretty well in the predictions department. I knew going into the fight that Tim Sylvia was going to give Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira fits and that’s exactly what happened. However Nogueira has been tough to finish off all throughout his career and this fight didn’t turn out to be any different. No shame in losing for Sylvia. He hung in there with one of the best heavyweights in history.

I had a feeling that if Brock Lesnar was going to be submitted, it might have been by way of a leg lock/kneebar. Wrestlers always have been notorious for being too stationary with their legs while posturing up and working some ground and pound although a lot of fighters don’t really take advantage of it. It just goes to show how intelligent of a ground specialist Frank Mir is to keep his composure while getting pounded and still be able to pull off a smart move.

The only fight I took issue with was Rob Emerson’s split decision over Keita Nakamura. I actually thought that the fight was dead even at the end. I thought that Nakamura won the third round convincingly and that the first round was even.

More thoughts on the fights

Marvin Eastman surprised me while Tim Boetsch did not. While Eastman’s fight against Terry Martin wasn’t necessarily the most exciting, I was a tad happy to see that Eastman was able to take some power shots and still stay on his feet. Boetsch did exactly what I thought he would do against an average fighter in my opinion in David Heath.

Ricardo Almeida, Tyson Griffin, and Chris Lytle all did what I thought they would do. I talked to someone after the event who truly thought that Tibau beat Griffin, which is absurd. I wasn’t expecting that quick of a stoppage from Lytle but a stoppage win nonetheless. What’s going on with Jeremy Horn? I’ll have a piece on him up later today.

Continue reading "UFC 81: Breaking Point Thoughts and Notes"

CKA: Jan 28, 2008

Tito Ortiz turns 33 and celebrates in style at Catwalk in the above video courtesy of RawVegas.

Catching up on this past weekend’s news…

More Rumored TUF Participants

Even more potential cast members of the seventh season of The Ultimate Fighter have come to light thanks to MMA Junkie and Five Ounces of Pain. Those added to the list (which already includes Luke Zachrich and Mike Marrello) are the following:

Prince Mclean
Steve Byrnes
C.B. Dollaway
Aaron Meisner
Matt Brown

Couture Likes Sylvia Over Nogueira

In a recent interview with Jose Rodriguez of the Calgary Sun, current UFC heavyweight champion Randy Couture revealed that he expects Tim Sylvia to defeat former PRIDE champ Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira at UFC 81: Breaking Point this weekend.

“I think it’s going to be a good fight. I’m a fan of the sport first and foremost. I think it’s an interesting matchup. Nogueira’s strenght tends to be on the ground and in the submission game and Tim is just a long, strong hard to take down guy who’s got great striking abilities. It’s a classic matchup and for the interim title so they both have a lot on the line. I like Tim’s chances in that fight given Nogueira’s performace against Heath Herring in the last fight. I like Sylvia in a stoppage of some kind.”

Miscellaneous Notes

Former PRIDE producer Hiromichi Momose was found dead in his Tokyo, Japan apartment yesterday morning. He was 67. Countdown to UFC 81 premieres Wednesday night while UFC All-Access with Brock Lesnar will air for the first time on Thursday. Jason Miller will be holding a seminar in Hamilton, Ontario in February.

Radio Schedule

Jarry Park: Tyson Griffin Is Mr. Fight Of The Night

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

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