The Daily Recap is a collection of news and notes from around the web that will be posted at the end of each day. Bout signings, injury news and much more can all be found here.
For those complaining about the lack of depth for UFC cards recently, the announcement of a title fight and two high-profile bouts between contenders for the UFC's next show on FOX should be enough to generate some excitement again.
UFC on FOX 5 will be headlined by Benson Henderson, who defended his UFC lightweight championship just this past weekend against Frankie Edgar, taking on Nate Diaz in a 155 lb title bout.
Also featured on the network television broadcast will be decorated veteran Mauricio "Shogun" Rua facing top rising light heavyweight prospect Alexander Gustafsson and the return of future hall-of-famer B.J. Penn against highly-touted youngster Rory MacDonald.
The show will take place on December 8 at a location yet to be announced. A fourth fight will also be featured on the main card and will be announced in the coming weeks.
A much-anticipated rematch between former Bellator lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez and reigning DREAM 155 lb. king Shinya Aoki has reportedly been targeted for Bellator 66 on April 20. A venue and location for the bout has yet to have been announced.
The news comes from MMA Junkie, citing sources close to the event. Both fighters have agreed to the bout and contracts are expected to be finalized in the coming days.
Alvarez and Aoki first clashed at K-1 Dynamite!! 2008 in Japan, where Aoki forced Alvarez to tap from a heel hook just over a minute and a half into their bout. Rumors of a rematch have been swirling for about a year now, but talks between both parties seemed to have heated up in recent months.
Shinya Aoki applying a gogoplata. Photo courtesy of Fight Entertainment Group.
DREAM officials have announced that DREAM lightweight champion Joachim Hansen will defend his title against Shinya Aoki at DREAM.11 on Oct. 6 at the Yokohama Arena in Kanagawa, Japan.
Aoki and Hansen first met at PRIDE: Shockwave 2006 and Aoki stunned the Japanese faithful as he submitted Hansen with a spectacular gogoplata. Hansen evened up the series at the DREAM.5 Lightweight Grand Prix last year when he scored a TKO early in the first stanza.
We will be going live at 3:00 AM EST with live results of DREAM.10, which takes place at the Saitama Super Arena in Saitama, Japan.
The card will be headlined by a lightweight bout between Shinya Aoki and Vitor Riberio. Also on the card is the welterweight tournament semifinals featuring Hayato Sakurai vs. Marius Zaromskis and Andre Galvao vs. Jason High.
Feel free to leave your thoughts and comments throughout the evening. Detailed live results are after the jump.
As promised, M-1 Global has released video of last week’s exhibition bout between longtime heavyweight king Fedor Emelianenko and skilled lightweight grappler Shinya Aoki, which took place as part of the latest edition of the M-1 Challenge on April 29 in Tokyo, Japan.
Fedor Emelianenko. Photo by Tracy Lee/CombatLifestyle.com.
Perennial heavyweight king Fedor Emelianenko scored a submission win via Achilles lock over skilled grappler Shinya Aoki in a meeting that was billed as a “special super exhibition” during the latest edition of the M-1 Challenge earlier today in Tokyo, Japan.
From today’s press release:
The Japanese crowd displayed even more emotion during Fedor and Aoki’s public sparring session, which was advertised locally as a “special super exhibition.” With no scoring in effect, the encounter between the two undisputed world champions resembled a training session that you might see inside of a fight gym. The only difference was that nearly 1,000 spectators were on hand to watch the two square off while donning Gis.
Fedor utilized his strength advantage to send Aoki soaring with several Sambo throws. At one point, Aoki played to the crowd and removed his Gi in jest and attempted a flying armbar on Fedor. With both fighters pressing each other well less than 100 percent, the two smiled for much of the session and embraced after the final bell had sounded.
Based on the pictures of the event, both fighters were being just a bit friendly to each other. Plus, it was an exhibition, and it took place in Japan under the watchful eyes of those crazy Russians so take Fedor’s submission victory as you wish.
Video of the match will be available on a video-on-demand basis free of charge next Monday at M-1Global.com. Complete results from the event are after the jump.
Fedor Emelianenko. Photo courtesy of BodogFight.
Amsterdam, Holland - While WAMMA heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko’s recent two wins over former UFC heavyweight champions Tim Sylvia and Andrei Arlovski have taken place on American soil, he first earned his reputation as being the world’s pound-for-pound best fighter while competing in Japan.
Despite having made a name for himself in Japan, Fedor has not competed in the Land of the Rising Sun since recording a first round submission victory over 7’2’’ Goliath Hong Man Choi at “Yarrenoka” on New Year’s Eve 2007.
But Fedor will end his hiatus from active competition in Japan on Wednesday, April 29 at Shinjuku Face in Tokyo during the third edition of the 2009 “M-1 Challenge Presented by Affliction.” Fans in attendance will be treated to a special five-minute sparring exhibition between Fedor when he returns to the ring for a five-minute special sparring exhibition against WAMMA lightweight champion Shinya Aoki.
Fedor Emelianenko. Photo courtesy of Affliction Entertainment.
In a report released today by kamipro.com, top heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko will take on lightweight Shinya Aoki in a grappling match to be held on April 29th in the 3rd installment of DEEP M-1 Challenge.
While there has yet to be an official announcement and the idea of this match-up could seem a tad unbelievable, this isn’t the first time these two names have been thrown around in a potential fight. There’s no secret that Japanese promotions love to put on fights featuring their biggest stars, at times ignoring size and reason, and Fedor and Aoki are two of the biggest fan-favorites.
Luckily for us it was announced yesterday that this event will be streamed live on Japan-MMA.
Shinya Aoki. Photo courtesy of Fighting and Entertainment Group.
In a bout that will pit two of Japan’s biggest MMA draws against each other, skilled grappler Shinya Aoki and Hayato “Mach” Sakurai will reportedly meet in the opening round of DREAM’s inaugural welterweight grand prix tournament according to MMA Weekly:
Dream appears ready to kick off its first Welterweight Grand Prix in a big way, pitting No. 1 ranked lightweight Shinya Aoki – who has several past welterweight bouts to his credit – against former Top 10 ranked Hayato “Mach” Sakurai. MMAWeekly.com sources confirmed the planned bout on Friday.
The bout is the first known match-up of the opening round of the tournament and should be a popular choice for the fans in Japan. Both fighters are popular, successful fighters with strong followings in their home country.
A first-round bout between the two had been rumored for some time but it was unknown if Fighting and Entertainment Group officials would be keen on matching the two together in the first round considered how vital they would be to averaging solid television ratings. However based on the extremely poor ratings DREAM.7 pulled in last weekend, it looks as if the promotion is going for broke.
John Alessio. Photo property of World Extreme Cagefighting.
Former UFC and WEC welterweight title challenger John Alessio is reportedly in talks with Fighting and Entertainment Group concerning the possibility of the Xtreme Couture member taking on skilled Japanese grappler Shinya Aoki in the first round of DREAM’s inaugural welterweight grand prix tournament in April.
According to Five Ounces of Pain, a source close to Alessio has stated that although his client is in talks with the Japanese promotion, a deal has not yet been finalized and that his chances of competing in the tournament are uncertain.
Following his questionable release from World Extreme Cagefighting last year, Alessio has gone on to win two out of his last three bouts. “The Natural” won consecutive bouts over fellow UFC veterans Pete Spratt and Gideon Ray before falling to Paul Daley at a Maximum Fighting Championship event in December.
Aoki was the favorite to win DREAM’s lightweight tourney last year, but ended up falling to Joachim Hansen in the grand prix finals. However “Tobikan Judan” bounced back to record consecutive wins in his last two bouts, submitting Todd Moore at DREAM.6 and most recently, fellow top-ranked lightweight Eddie Alvarez at K-1 Dynamite!! 2008.