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.
Tara LaRosa grapples with Shayna Baszler. Photo courtesy of BodogFight.
With their signing of former star professional wrestler Bobby Lashley only a week old, the American Fight League has continued to make waves with last week’s signing of Tara LaRosa, who has quickly risen to the top of the female mixed martial arts world after winning twelve consecutive fights over the last four years.
However according to a report by Fighters Only Magazine, LaRosa’s deal with the AFL might be a tad bit bigger than we all think. The New Jersey native will reportedly make between $500,000 and $750,000 over the course of her four-fight stint with the promotion according to representatives with her management company, not only easily making her the highest-paid female fighter ever, but one of the highest earning fighters in the sport period.
“The AFL is the right place for me because they believe in putting fighters first and giving women a platform for showcasing their skills,” LaRosa said in a press release last week. “I also feel that the league offers a professional approach to MMA which lifts the sport’s credibility with mainstream audiences.”
LaRosa has fought exclusively inside the confines of BodogFight for the past two years, winning all five of her fights within the organization including a submission win over Amanda Buckner and a stoppage of EliteXC veteran Shayna Baszler.
The Philadelphia Fight Factory product will make her official AFL debut at the promotion’s first-ever pay-per-view event this fall.
According to Bodog Fight’s reigning women’s champion, fans in Sin City are about to bear witness to the future of mixed martial arts on Feb. 1.
That’s when the explosive force known as Kaitlin Young is scheduled to make her Bodog Fight debut at the Las Vegas Sport Center.
Photo courtesy of Bodog Fight.
“I believe Kaitlin Young is the future,” says Tara LaRosa.
“I was at a Hook-N-Shoot tournament in Indiana a couple of months ago when she knocked out three women in one night, all in the first round. It was frightening. Her striking is crisp and precise. Her timing is spot on, and her power is absolutely insane. Those women (Patti Lee, Meisha Tate and Suzi Smith) barely stood a chance.”
That’s high praise from a woman widely regarded as the best in the sport, but Bodog Fight matchmaker Eric Nicholl agrees that Young (4-0) is the real deal.
“Anybody can get a lucky knockout,” says Nicholl. “But to finish three opponents in devastating fashion in a single night is impressive. I mean, she slugged her way through that tournament in less than 1:53 of actual fight time.”
Some news and notes for you this morning…
Cote Expected to Color Commentate at UFC 84
Bad news for all of those Canadians that were eagerly hoping that Patrick Cote would be fighting on the UFC 84 card in Canada, but fun news nonetheless.
In a post-fight interview with The Fight Network, Cote revealed that the UFC has asked him to be the color commentator for the UFC’s French broadcast of the event:
“To be honest, [the UFC] wants me to do the French commentating for that show, so I don’t know if I’ll be fighting on it,” Cote told The Fight Network. “That’s okay; I’ll get to be the French Joe Rogan and do the play-by-play.”
LaRosa, Imes Returning to Action
Speaking of The Fight Network again, they’ve got the scoop on future bouts involving BodogFight women’s champ Tara LaRosa and Mr. Gogoplata himself, Brad Imes.
According to LaRosa herself, she will be defending her belt against Molly Helsel at a BodogFight-sponsored Hook-N-Shoot event on Saturday, March 29 at the Evansville Coliseum in Evansville, Indiana. This is the same location where Eddie Alvarez and Matt Lee were set to rematch before the event was scrapped.
Imes will face off against Matt Thompson for the International Fighting Council US heavyweight championship at an IFC event on February 23rd.
Patti Lee def. Jordan Sprague - TKO (Strikes)
Nicdali Calanic def. Jen Babcock - TKO (Strikes)
Kaitlin Young def. Suzi Smith - KO (Punch)
Miesha Tate def. Jan Finney - Unanimous Decision
Matt Troyer def. Chad George - Unanimous Decision
Mike Thomas Brown def. Eben Oroz - TKO (Strikes)
Joseph Baize def. Roy Timmons - Submission (Ankle Lock)
Darren Morse def. Steve Connelly - Submission (Heel Hook)
Patti Lee def. Nicdali Calanic - Submission (Heel Hook)
Kaitlin Young def. Miesha Tate - KO (Punch)
Tara Larosa def. Cody Welchin - Submission (Triangle)
David Overfield def. Warren Merritt - Submission (Triangle)
Kaitlin Young def. Patti Lee - KO (Punch)
Dan Hornbuckle def. Courtney Ray - Submission (Armbar)
This Thanksgiving weekend will be a difficult one for Tara LaRosa.
While others stuff themselves with turkey, the Bodog Fight Women’s 135lb Champion will be dieting to lose ten pounds.
Not satisfied with conquering her division, LaRosa has decided to drop to 125lbs and fight Minnesota’s Cody Welchlin (2-1) in a lighter weight class, as Bodog Fight presents Hook N’ Shoot, Saturday, November 24 at the Evansville Coliseum in Evansville, Indiana.
Cutting weight isn’t anything new for LaRosa.
“I’m used to it,” said the Jersey girl. “I’ve missed several Thanksgivings due to fights, but I’m on target and the weight is coming off fine, so I’ll be ready.”
A news filled Coffee and Kick Ass today folks…
News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated…
- Mark Cuban will be holding a press conference and conference call concerning his new HDNet Fights venture. We will have a full report later today.
- If you haven’t already, please check out Randy Couture’s signed gloves from UFC 74 that are currently up for auction by the Ryan Bennett Memorial Fund. Bidding ends on Thursday night.
- K-1 Hero’s parent company FEG announced a rematch between PRIDE veterans Sergei Kharitonov and Alistair Overeem at the K-1 Hero’s show taking place on September 17th.
- Duane Ludwig will now face Mario Stapel at this Saturday’s Ring of Fire event after his original opponent, Dragan Baklua, broke his hand during a recent training session. Despite all of this, Ludwig has trained hard and is ready to face whomever is standing in front of him:
“I was getting ready to face a stand up guy, but Mario is much more well rounded,” stated Ludwig. “He is more of a true MMA fighter. I changed my game plan accordingly. For this fight, I tightened up my game by training at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas. The training was great and I feel prepared for whatever happens. I love fighting at home and can’t wait for Saturday.”
- Jeff Monson, Matt Horwich, and Tara LaRosa all won medals in last weekend’s World Grappling Championships in Turkey.
- Spike TV announced yesterday that UFC 75 was the most watched MMA event in the history of North America:
UFC 75 was the most watched mixed martial arts event ever in North America, drawing 4.7 million viewers, Spike TV officials said in a news release Tuesday.
The Sept. 8 event from the O2 Arena in London, England, featured UFC light heavyweight champion Quinton Jackson’s win over PRIDE champ Dan Henderson in a title unification bout. Airing delayed on Spike, the telecast peaked at 5.6 million viewers during Jackson’s battle against Henderson. The show’s ratings were particularly strong among men age 18-34 and men 18-49. For those audiences, UFC 75 beat everything on television, Spike officials said, including ABC’s NASCAR race and Michigan vs. Oregon college football game, as well as ESPN’s Virginia Tech vs. LSU and Notre Dame vs. Penn St. games.
Spike TV said its telecast of UFC 75 had an overall rating of 3.1 (3.0 million homes), including a 5.7 rating for men 18-34 (1.6 million), 4.5 for men 18-49 (2.5 million) and 6.2 for men 25-34 (1.0 million).
- The Honolulu Star Bulletin is reporting that Justin McCully has been forced to pull out of his scheduled bout against Christian Wellisch for undisclosed reasons. Wellisch will now face Scott Junk”
Kailua’s Scott Junk will make his UFC debut Sept. 22 against Christian Wellisch in a heavyweight fight at UFC 76: Knockout in Anaheim, Calif.
“It’s 100 percent going to happen,” Junk said. Wellisch (8-2) was originally scheduled to face Justin McCully.
Junk was notified about the fight yesterday, just 11 days before the event. He has put together six consecutive wins, including a TKO victory over Jimmy Ambriz back in June.
“It caught me off guard, but it’s good because I have been training this whole time,” Junk said.
Touch of gloves to UFC Mania for finding that interesting piece.
- The Governor of Illinois has signed legislation that will legalize MMA starting in 2008
- Michael Bisping’s father was apparently attacked in the parking lot of the O2 arena after the event.
Hat tip to Fight Opinion for that one.
- Sam Caplan of Five Ounces of Pain is reporting via Tagg Radio that Gilbert Melendez will be taking on Shooto’s Tetsuji Kato at Strikeforce’s Playboy Mansion event on September 29th.
Bodog Fight will crown its first ever women’s world champion, as Tara LaRosa and Kelly Kobold battle it out for the 135-pound belt on a special episode of the hit series Bodog Fight: New Jersey.
The occasion is extra sweet for LaRosa (12-1), who was raised a few miles from Trenton’s Sovereign Bank Arena where the fight takes place.
“I grew up in a small farming community called Woodstown in nearby Salem County,” she says. “So this fight is in my back yard, and all my friends and family will be there. I can’t think of a better storyline than to have them cheering for me as I try to win the women’s title. It’s going to be awesome.”
Photo: David M Singer, MMA on Tap
This past Saturday was BodogFight’s first event in the United States. I took the trip to Sovereign Bank Arena in Trenton, NJ to check it out.
If you’ve tuned into BodogFight on Ion Television, you know it goes through a full round of production before airing. Many camera angles, splashy backgrounds and a full round of editing.
I wondered how this event would be live. Ten fights in one night. A good-sized card taking place with no chance for edits or MTV-style cuts.