Ricardo Almeida

Complete UFC 128 Fight Card Announced


Mike Pyle. Photo by Esther Lin/AllElbows.com

The Ultimate Fighting Championship has added two recently rumored preliminary bouts to complete the fight card for UFC 128: Shogun vs. Evans, which is set to take place on March 19 at the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.

Riding momentum from an upset of heralded prospect John Hathaway, seasoned veteran Mike Pyle will return to action against grappling expert Ricardo Almeida and Dan Miller will join his brother Jim at the event, taking on oft-injured Nick Catone.

Prior to the Hathaway contest, Pyle had struggled in the UFC, splitting a quartet of bouts. Almeida bounced back from a tough loss to Matt Hughes last summer, winning a decision over T.J. Grant at UFC 124 last month.

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Almeida-Horwich Added to UFC 90 in Chicago


Ricardo Almeida. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Along with a previously rumored bout between Thales Leites and Goran Reljic, the Ultimate Fighting Championship today announced the addition of a middleweight bout between Ricardo Almeida and former IFL middleweight champion Matt Horwich to the preliminary card of UFC 90: Silva vs. Cote.

Almeida returned to professional competition after a five-year hiatus and immediately reverted back to his winning ways, submitting last-minute replacement opponent Rob Yundt at UFC 81 in February. The victory earned Almeida a shot at rising contender Patrick Cote at UFC 86 last month, with a shot at current champion Anderson Silva on the line. However Almeida’s lack of cardio came into play and he ended up losing a split decision to the Canadian.

Horwich meanwhile, became the IFL’s first-ever middleweight champion after besting Brian Foster and Benji Radach in last year’s four-man tournament to win the vacant belt. Horwich was then defeated in his first title defense, dropping a unanimous decision to Ryan McGivern in February. Horwich most recently fought at the IFL’s last-ever event three months ago, winning a decision over Joey Guel.

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UFC 86 Results

Forrest Griffin def. Quinton Jackson - Unanimous Decision
Patrick Cote def. Ricardo Almeida - Split Decision
Joe Stevenson def. Gleison Tibau - Submission (guillotine choke)
Josh Koscheck def. Chris Lytle - Unanimous Decision
Gabriel Gonzaga def. Justin McCully - Submission (americana)
Cole Miller def. Jorge Gurgel - Submission (triangle choke)
Melvin Guillard def. Dennis Siver - TKO
Justin Buchholz def. Corey Hill - Submission (rear naked choke)

Update Jul 6 7:45pm: Adding post-fight video reaction.

First, Forrest Griffin:

Others after the jump.

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Three Bouts Added to UFC 86 in July


Josh Koscheck throws a left jab at Dustin Hazelett. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

The Ultimate Fighting Championship has announced three additional fights will take place at UFC 86: Jackson vs. Griffin on July 5th.

The event will be headlined by Quinton “Rampage” Jackson’s first light heavyweight title defense in nearly a year as he will take on Forrest Griffin, who is currently serving as one of the coaches alongside Jackson on the current seventh season of “The Ultimate Fighter.”

White-hot Canadian middleweight Patrick Cote, who has won his last three UFC bouts despite starting off his Octagon career 0-4, will take on skilled grappler Ricardo Almeida, who returned from a four-year hiatus from the sport in February, submitting UFC newcomber Rob Yundt in the first round.

Former standout college wrestler Josh Koscheck will look for his second straight win when he takes on part-time professional boxer, the always exciting Chris Lytle. The Indiana native scored an impressive knockout of Kyle Bradley at UFC 81: Breaking Point in February.

In a bout that came to light just yesterday, former “Ultimate Fighter” cast members Cole Miller and Jorge Gurgel will face off in a lightweight bout.

The rumored card for the event now looks like this:

Quinton Jackson vs. Forrest Griffin
Frank Mir vs. Justin McCully
Josh Koscheck vs. Chris Lytle
Joe Stevenson vs. Gleison Tibau
Ricardo Almeida vs. Patrick Cote
Tyson Griffin vs. Marcus Aurelio*
Melvin Guillard vs. Dennis Siver
Justin Buchholz vs. Corey Hill*
Cole Miller vs. Jorge Gurgel*
Ben Saunders vs. Jared Rollins
Steve Bruno vs. TBA*

* - not yet confirmed by UFC.

Back to the Future: UFC 86


Patrick Cote weighs-in for UFC Fight Night 12. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

A slew of signed and proposed fights for the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s planned July 5th UFC 86 event in Las Vegas have come to light this week.

Quinton “Rampage” Jackson will defend his UFC light heavyweight title against top contender Forrest Griffin at the event. The two fighters will serve as coaches for the upcoming seventh season of “The Ultimate Fighter”.

American Top Team has confirmed via it’s official website that four of their fighters will be competing at UFC 86: Gleison Tibau, Cole Miller, Steve Bruno, and Ben Saunders. The only fighter with a potential opponent as of right now is Tibau. MMA Mania reports that a bout between him and former title contender Joe Stevenson will likely take place at the show.

A lightweight affair between Corey Hill and Justin Buccholz also seems to be in the works. Patrick Cote will return to action at the event as well against Ricardo Almeida according to The Fight Network.

According to Cote, he wants a fight that will potentially put him in title contention in the near future. A showdown with Almeida just might do that.

“We wanted a big fight,” Cote said in the report. “I have four wins in a row, three in the UFC, and I think I’m ready for a real tough opponent. I want to fight a guy who, if I win, the UFC will put me in a title fight or one more fight before I get my shot.”

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.

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A Tale of Two Comebacks: Nogueira, Mir Survive


Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira throws a right hand at Tim Sylvia during their championship fight at UFC 81: Breaking Point. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira became the first mixed martial artist in history to hold championship gold inside the confines of both the Ultimate Fighting Championship and the PRIDE Fighting Championships as he submitted former two-time champion Tim Sylvia to win the interim UFC heavyweight belt at last night’s UFC 81: Breaking Point.

The 10,583 inside the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas saw an eventful first round where Sylvia shook off a right hand flush to his face to knock Nogueira down with a right of his own. Sylvia pounced on Nogueira but was unable to finish him off. The Brazilian maintained his composure and scored a swift combination and a late takedown during the final seconds of the first round.

The pace slowed considerably heading into the second stanza. Sparing a near takedown by Nogueira, the round took place on the feet the entire time. Each fighter landed their fair share of jabs and combinations throughout the five minutes. Sylvia looked to land a pair of rights that hurt Nogueira with under two minutes left in the round but the slow pace provided very little opportunity to capitalize on.

A right hand by Sylvia caused Nogueira to pull guard at the beginning of the third round. The skilled ground specialist quickly swept Sylvia, transitioned to side-control, and then locked in a guillotine as his opponent tried to stand up. Sylvia didn’t put up much of a fight and quickly tapped out, giving Nogueira the interim title.

“He’s a true heavyweight,” Nogueira said of Sylvia during a post-fight interview. “He’s a giant. I got in many hard punches in this fight. I was waiting for a good opportunity to put him on the ground. I always try at least one submission. If that doesn’t work, I go for a second and it worked tonight.”

Although visibly discouraged after the fight, Sylvia showed a good amount of respect for his opponent’s efforts.

“It’s Nogueira,” Sylvia said. “Every fight he’s in, he gets his ass kicked for the first ten minutes. You start getting comfortable fighting him and next thing you know, he catches you in something. The guy is a legend in the sport.”

Nogueira also pleaded for current champion Randy Couture to return from his resignation from the promotion in order to unify the belts and put on a great fight for the fans. Only time will tell if Couture will continue his stance or give in to the demands of Nogueira and many other UFC officials.

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UFC 81: Breaking Point Results

Antonio Nogueira def. Tim Sylvia - Submission (Guillotine)
Frank Mir def. Brock Lesnar - Submission (Kneebar)
Nate Marquardt def. Jeremy Horn - Submission (Guillotine)
Ricardo Almeida def. Rob Yundt - Submission (Guillotine)
Tyson Griffin def. Gleison Tibau - Unanimous Decision
Chris Lytle def. Kyle Bradley - TKO (Strikes)
Tim Boetsch def. David Heath - TKO (Strikes)
Marvin Eastman def. Terry Martin - Unanimous Decision
Robert Emerson def. Keita Nakamura - Split Decision

UFC 81: Breaking Point Weigh-In Results


Frank Mir weighs-in for UFC 48: Payback. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.

The official weigh-in results for tomorrow night’s UFC 81: Breaking Point are below. All fighters successfully made weight.

The event is scheduled to take place tomorrow night at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.

UFC 81: Breaking Point features a total of nine fights including a battle for the interim UFC heavyweight title between former champion Tim Sylvia and former PRIDE star Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira as well as the UFC debut of one-time professional wrestler and WWE superstar Brock Lesnar as he goes up against former champion Frank Mir.

The weigh-ins went smoothly for the most part except for a near scuffle between Marvin Eastman and Terry Martin. The two got nose-to-nose during the staredown and had to be separated by UFC President Dana White. Martin was able to shove Eastman just before they were broken apart.

Main Card:

Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira (237 lbs) vs. Tim Sylvia (261 lbs)
Frank Mir (255 lbs) vs. Brock Lesnar (265 lbs)
Jeremy Horn (185 lbs) vs. Nate Marquardt (185 lbs)
Ricardo Almeida (185 lbs) vs. Rob Yundt (185 lbs)
Tyson Griffin (155 lbs) vs. Gleison Tibau (156 lbs)

Preliminary Fights:

Chris Lytle (170 lbs) vs. Kyle Bradley (170 lbs)
David Heath (205 lbs) vs. Tim Boetsch (205 lbs)
Marvin Eastman (185 lbs) vs. Terry Martin (186 lbs)
Rob Emerson (155 lbs) vs. Keita Nakamura (155 lbs)

Previewing UFC 81: Breaking Point

John Chandler here to break down UFC 81: Breaking Point fight-by-fight, including detailed predictions along the way.

The event is scheduled to take place tomorrow night at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas.

UFC 81: Breaking Point features a total of nine fights including a battle for the interim UFC heavyweight title between former champion Tim Sylvia and former PRIDE star Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira as well as the UFC debut of one-time professional wrestler and WWE superstar Brock Lesnar as he goes up against former champion Frank Mir.

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