It’s a new season. It’s a new cast. We’re recapping each episode. Let’s get down to business.
What do you need to know? There are 16 welterweights fighting for one UFC contract, even though we all know they are going to get a shot anyway, provided they don’t fight on the show like Marlon Sims and Noah Thomas. The coaches for this season are current UFC Welterweight Champion Matt Serra and the former welterweight champ, Matt Hughes.
The first episode surprised me in that it jumped right into things. It didn’t focus on the fighters and the house as much compared to earlier seasons, maybe a change in strategy to get those who hate reality television and only watch for the fights to stay tuned.
One of Serra’s BJJ students, Joe Scarola happens to be on the show. Hughes joked with Scarola that he was going to pick him first if he had the chance, obviously starting the mind games. Serra won the coin toss, got the first pick, and selected his boy. Matt Hughes went ahead and picked Dan Barrera with his first pick. The teams ended up looking like this…
Team Serra: Joe Scarola, George Sotiropoulos, Matt Arroyo, John Kolosci, Ben Saunders, Roman Mitichyan, Troy Mandaloniz, Richie Hightower
Team Hughes: Dan Barrera, Mac Danzig, Tommy Speer, Billy Miles, Jared Rollins, Paul Georgieff, Dorian Price, Blake Bowman
Only two things of note happened during the course of the show.
Roman Mitichyan was forced to leave the show after fracturing his elbow during the fighter evaluations for Serra and Hughes. He was replaced by Jon Koppenhaver, who will join Team Serra. Mitichyan put up quite the fit and it’s kind of obvious that he isn’t that familiar with the way things go on in this country.
The other was the fight. Hughes showed no mercy and pairing up the experienced Mac Danzig against Serra’s protege in Scarola.
The fight started out on the feet but quickly went to the ground, exactly where Serra and Scarola wanted it to be. Danzig stayed on top and Scarola did a nice job of keeping Danzig in tight and preventing him from inflicting any damage. Scarola reversed position and wound up on top of Danzig but Danzig quickly locked in a triangle joke that forced Scarola to tap out with only seconds left in the first round.
Hughes’ plan worked like a charm. Next week looks pretty eventful as Scarola contemplates leaving the house and Serra has to “kick a bitch off the show”.
News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated.
- Spencer Fisher has stated that his next UFC fight will take place in November…
- UFC Junkie has now become MMA Junkie.
- It seems that TUF 5 alumnus Corey Hill has opted not to join Matt Hughes’ newly formed team after all:
Hill was supposed to be one of the four founding fighters, but according to Fiore, he has decided to explore other options.
“Cory is the type of fighter we are trying to bring to our gym,” Fiore said. “Nonetheless, we wish him the best of luck with his training and fighting career.“
- Yesterday’s Faber-Curran announcement was done in conjunction with the WEC’s new deal with Versus, which will bring 15 more live events and 20 more shows of Wrekcage to the network.
- UFC veteran Darrell Gholar has announced that he will be opening a training center in Austin, Texas.
- Showtime has hired sports producer David Dinkins to oversee the production of boxing and mixed martial arts telecasts for the network:
When asked about the future of MMA on the network, Dinkins said, “This is a tremendous opportunity for us to put our stamp on a new and growing sport. We plan to be innovative while maintaining the same high quality that viewers have come to expect from our boxing telecasts.”
- UFC middleweight Terry Martin is filing a lawsuit against the Chicago Police Department for false arrest:
Ultimate Fighting Championship rising star Terry Martin was falsely arrested as he was on his way into a police station to report police harassment, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday.
Martin, 26, is suing Mayor Daley and Chicago Police officials and officers for misconduct, alleging that corruption within the Chicago Police Department led to Martin being arrested and prosecuted. Martin was stopped by police Oct. 22, 2005, for alleged minor traffic offenses while driving with his girlfriend, a 911 operator. He claims the officers used racial slurs during the encounter and other disrespectful comments. The next evening, according to the suit, Martin went to the police station to report the incident and was spotted by the same two officers.
‘‘The police said Terry drove past the station, and when the officers turned on their sirens, he did a U-turn and fled,’’ Martin’s attorney, Blake Horowitz, said. ‘‘They said he got up to a half-mile away before they brought him back and arrested him for fleeing and eluding. During the trial, another officer said he saw Terry pull up to the station calmly and they arrested him. He would have been able to see if there was a chase.’‘
UFC President Dana White hosted a conference call earlier today in preparation for the upcoming UFC 75: Champion vs Champion event set to take place on September 8th from London, England. The fighters featured on the call were UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Quinton Jackson, PRIDE Middleweight and Welterweight Champion Dan Henderson, Michael Bisping, and Matt Hamill through the use of an interpreter.
MMA’s most popular reality show, The Ultimate Fighter 6, is set to return Wednesday, September 19th at 10 PM on Spike TV. Season six will feature 16 fighters all competing in the 170 lbs. division with the winner earning a three year contract with the UFC. The finals will air Dec. 8 live on Spike TV and 21 days later the coaches, Matt Hughes and Matt Serra, will compete for the UFC welterweight title at UFC 79 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Matt Arroyo (2-1)
Daniel Barrera (1-0)
Blake Bowman (4-3)
Mac Danzig (17-4-1)
Paul Georgieff (7-1)
Richie Hightower (7-1)
John Kolosci (8-4)
Troy Mandaloniz (3-1)
Billy Miles (2-1)
Roman Mitchyan (8-1)
Dorian Price (8-2)
Jared Rollins (9-3)
Ben Saunders (4-0-2)
Joe Scarola (6-0)
George Sotiropoulos (7-2)
Tommy Speer (9-1)
News and Notes
- Tony Bonello has been forced to withdraw from his scheduled bout against Jon Murphy at this Saturday’s ShoXC Elite Challenger Series event. A replacement opponent for Murphy has not yet been named.
- Cub Swanson says that he may not be competing in the WEC’s September 5th event now that Jens Pulver has bowed out of their bout with a knee injury:
“It’s fifty-fifty right now that I’ll fight in September,” said Swanson, a hot local talent on the San Diego circuit whose budding career could have surely benefited from the higher profile match-up with the former UFC lightweight champion.
“It’s unfortunate,” said Swanson. “I just finished training for a month in Big Bear and I’m in shape.”
Loretta Hunt of The Fight Network describes Swanson’s current situation as “the WEC placing him on standby.”
- MMA Weekly is reporting that yet another Korean news website is stating that Denis Kang has signed with K-1 Hero’s and that his first bout will be against Kazushi Sakuraba on September 17th.
A Korean website called “joynews.inews24.com” is reporting that Denis Kang has been signed by K-1’s Heroes to a lucrative 2-year contract.
Apparently, Kang’s management is citing the ability to continue to compete in Spirit MC, a Korean MMA promotion in which Kang is one of the biggest draws and holds a title, as the deciding factor in signing the contract with K-1 Heroes.
Korean news is also reporting that Kang’s debut is scheduled for September 17 against Kazushi Sakuraba. Neither Kang nor K-1 has yet confirmed this, however, and there is some speculation that Sakuraba may be injured.
The website does bring up two new points - Sakuraba’s possible injury and the fact that Kang would be free to still compete in Spirit MC, which happens to be holding a tournament right now to try and crown a number one contender for Kang’s heavyweight title in that promotion.
- UFC Junkie is reporting that Nate Mohr has been forced to pull out of his proposed bout with Jeremy Stephens at UFC 76. Mohr has apparently suffered a possible broken hand. Officials close to Stephens have stated that he has still been promised a spot on the card and that the UFC is currently searching for a replacement opponent. The UFC had yet to officially announce the Mohr-Stephens bout.
- UFC Heavyweight Champion Randy Couture will be featured tonight in Spike TV’s special, “100% Natural”. Spike will air three programs featuring Couture in them: UFC Unleashed featuring Couture’s win over Tim Sylvia at UFC 68 at 10 PM, Countdown to UFC 74 at 11 PM, and then UFC All Access: Randy Couture at 12 AM.
- The California State Athletic Commission has announced that Anthony Bivins and Cesar De La Torre have both been fined and suspended for testing positive for marijuana.
De La Torre last competed at Total Fighting Alliance on August 11th in Santa Monica, Calif. He lost by TKO to Justin Schalk. De La Torre has been fined $500 and his suspension runs from the conclusion of the bout on August 11 through November 9, 2007.
Bivins tested positive following his most recent bout for Cage Combat on August 18th in Yuba City, Calif. He defeated Tyson Schoel by triangle choke. Bivins was also fined $500 and his suspension runs from the conclusion of the bout on August 18 through November 16, 20007.
- The New Jersey State Athletic Control Board has added a female referee to it’s staff for the first time in it’s history:
Kim Winslow will officiate her first MMA fight under the NJSACB at Ring of Combat XV Friday, Sept. 7 at the Tropicana Casino in Atlantic City, N.J. Promoted by Louis Neglia, the event will be televised on pay-per-view. Ring of Combat XV will feature preliminary fights in the Beasts of the Northeast Tournament.
Winslow, a Reno, Nev. resident, has refereed in an amateur capacity in several other jurisdictions, according to the NJSACB. The 39-year-old has shadowed pro referees at UFC and IFL shows. Winslow trained regularly in jiu-jitsu and Muay thai for several years at the Reno School of Combat.
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MMA Madness: A look back at K-1’s Las Vegas Grand Prix
News and Notes
- Another reminder to leave your selection on our latest Rock the Vote: Should Sherk Be Stripped of the Title?
- Hayato Sakurai has not yet signed a contract to compete with the UFC according to The Fight Network:
Following his introduction to the United States audience by UFC president Dana White, Sakurai conducted several interviews over a seven-day period. He said “the [UFC] contract hasn’t been signed yet, but there are fighters in the UFC I would love to fight.”
- Former TUF runner-up Stephan Bonnar will now be training alongside rival Forrest Griffin at Xtreme Couture in Las Vegas.
- The Ultimate Fighter reality show will be moved to Wednesday nights instead of it’s usual Thursday time slot for the upcoming sixth installment according to Spike TV. The show will still air at 10 PM. The season premiere of TUF 6 will air at 11 PM on September 19th because of the scheduled UFC Fight Night 11 airing from 9-11 PM that same night.
News and Notes:
- Our rumors section has been updated once again…
- Be sure to check back later today when we post a brand new Rock the Vote. An updated MMA on Tap Top 10 is also possible.
- Tonight’s episode of BodogFight: Paradise Lost will feature a bout between Tara LaRosa and Shayna Bazsler at 135 lbs.
- UFC Fight Night 11 will air on September 20th and will precede the debut of The Ultimate Fighter 6. The event will take place at the The Palms in Las Vegas. Mike Swick vs Chris Leben and Din Thomas vs Spencer Fisher are two of the rumored bouts for the event.
- Lightweight Jeremy Stephens has been granted a temporary leave of absence by the UFC in order to fight in smaller shows according to UFC Junkie.
- The third season of The Ultimate Fighter is in stores starting today.
Live Shows -
News and Notes:
- Our rumors section has been updated…
- Frankie Edgar has confirmed that he suffered a broken nose during his fight with Mark Bocek at UFC 73.
- The reports of a fan falling to his death at UFC 73 are actually true:
A man who fell 30 feet at Arco Arena Saturday night has died. The man was attending an Ultimate Fighting event when the accident occurred.
Authorities say 27-year-old Eraldo Cano of Merced was walking between the barriers on the second floor of the arena when he fell. He was rushed to the UC Davis Medical Center around 8:27 p.m. but was pronounced dead around 10 p.m.
- The third season of The Ultimate Fighter will be released on DVD tomorrow.
- Congrats to Dann of UFC Junkie who was hired as the MMA columnist for the Dayton Daily News in Ohio.
Video of the Day:
The Nevada State Athletic Commission has released the official list of medical suspensions stemming from last week’s The Ultimate Fighter 5 Finale:
Manny Gamburyan: Medically suspended until December 21. Can be cleared before then if an orthopedic doctor approves an x-ray of his right shoulder before then.
Robert Emerson: Medically suspended until December 21. Can be cleared before then if a doctor approves an x-ray that shows he does not have a fracture in his chest.
Floyd Sword, Doug Evans, Brandon Melendez, Andy Wang, Brian Geraghty: Medically suspended until July 24. No physical contact in training until July 15.
Scott White (85-43)
John Chandler (85-43)