News and Notes
- Our rumors page has been updated…
- Check back with us later today for a preview of what’s coming up in the world of MMA during the month of June.
- No word yet on whether or not the WEC has found a replacement opponent for Brock Larson for the promotion’s first ever televised event on Versus. Larson was originally supposed to challenge Carlos Condit for the WEC Welterweight Title but Condit was forced to bow out of the bout after sustaining an injury during training.
- The Fight Network is reporting that David Loiseau is currently sidelined with a broken thumb and will be out of action for 2-3 weeks:
David Loiseau (15-7) is currently sidelined with a broken thumb that required surgery two weeks ago. “The Crow” suffered the injury during his win over Freddie Espiricueta on May 11th at the Arena Fighting Championship’s “Art of War II” show in Austin, Texas.
The Canadian middleweight defeated Espiricueta with an arm-triangle submission in the second round, after damaging his right hand earlier in the fight.
“I have to wait two to three more weeks [before removing the cast] and then I’ll start training again,” said the 27 year old.
Nonetheless, the Montreal native has been forced to withdraw from the upcoming Steele Cage Promotions IFO event in Las Vegas on July 7. Loiseau was slated to face Chilo Gonzalez (9-7) in the upstart MMA organization launched by former boxing referee Richard Steele.
Video of the Day
This Friday’s IFL Battleground will feature the greatest knockouts in IFL history…
News and Notes
- Check back later this morning for our predictions on tonight’s UFC Fight Night 9. As always we will be going live at 8 PM EST with one of our patented live blogs…
- Also video of Josh Koscheck fighting a fan is coming your way around 8:30 AM…
- So what are you doing today from 6 PM on? Watching Spike TV, duh. Remember there will be two episodes of UFC Unleashed between 6-8 PM. 8 PM of course is UFC Fight Night 9 and following that will be the season premiere of The Ultimate Fighter 5 at 10 PM. Going to be a big day.
- A Japanese news report is speculating that Diego Sanchez may participate in the PRIDE Lightweight Grand Prix starting in May.
- Brazilian MMA news site World Fight posted a recent interview with Mauricio Rua where he stated that he would be interested in taking on Renato Sobral and Tito Ortiz in the near future.
UFC Junkie gives the English translation:
WF: Tito Ortiz declared recently that he would like to fight with you…
Rua: He is a very good athlete and strong, I would like to face him yes, with certainty I would like that fight.
WF: Does the possibility of a rematch with Renato Sobral motivate you to fight in the UFC?
Rua: Definitely! It is a fight that now can happen and I would like it very much it if did.
- Cage Warriors President Doug Truman was arrested yesterday on charges of an alleged connection to a convicted drug dealer in Hampshire, England. Truman is still in jail but is expected to post bail in the next 24 hours.
- The schedule for Versus’ coverage of the WEC starting in June is now up on it’s official website.
Video of the Day
Rock the Vote Results
Diego Sanchez - 68%
Rashad Evans - 13%
Mike Swick - 11%
Josh Koscheck - 7%
Joe Stevenson - 4%
Other - 1%
Houston Chronicle: Ultimate Fighting battles for a mainstream role
Sherdog: Diego Sanchez - This Time It’s Personal
UFC: Sanchez vs Koscheck II - Bad Blood Boiling
The Fight Network: The Second Go-Around
Versus, the network that celebrates real competition in all its forms, today announced that it will televise the inaugural season of the World Combat League (WCL), the world’s first team-based combat martial arts league.
The WCL was created and launched by six-time world karate champion and martial arts icon Chuck Norris in October, 2005 and the WCL currently consists of eight teams representing two divisions.
The premiere episode of the WCL on Versus will air January 25 at 11 p.m. ET and the network will televise at least 27 hours of WCL action in prime time during 2007.
News and Notes
- MMA journeyman Travis Fulton suffered a KO loss to the hands of former heavyweight contender Lou Savarese.
- Shinya Aoki will make his return to Shooto when he faces Akira Kikuchi in a rematch as he defends his Shooto 167-pound belt.
- UFC veteran Wes Sims will headline the March 22nd Palace Fighting card when he faces Anthony Fuller.
“I like this show. It’s a great setup,” Sims said. “For this being the first show, I’m very happy with the number of people here. If I had to rate this promotion on a scale of 1-10, I’d give it a 10 for a small show. If it keeps growing, I think it will be a great big show.”
- The WEC has announced that Versus will begin airing events in the summer. Versus will air three live fights and six one-hour highlight shows.
- NBCSports.com has added the UFC to their sports coverage.
The first WEC card under Zuffa ownership is quickly coming together with just 15 days to go until the event. One of the main events has been dropped, that being Jorge Oliviera vs Doug Marshall. The card including heavily rumored fights looks like this:
WEC Lightweight Title: Rob McCullough vs. Kit Cope
WEC Featherweight Title: Urijah Faber vs. Joe Pearson
Alex Karalexis vs. Olaf Alfonso
Carlos Condit vs. Alex Serduykov
Josh Smith vs. Casey Olson
Rich Crunkilton vs. Mike Joy (Rumored)
John Alessio vs. Brian Gassaway (Rumored)
Brandon Seguin vs. Fernando Gonzalez (Rumored)
A couple of potentially great fights on there, especially the two title fights and the Condit/Serduykov match. This is a very good offering for the re-invented WEC. Eventually, most of these fights will likely end up on VERSUS, the network that the WEC signed on to broadcast their events.
The World Extreme Cagefighting’s first card under Zuffa is beginning to take shape.
The card’s main event will pit heavy-handed lightweights Kit Cope and “Razor” Rob McCullough in a battle that will be for the vacant WEC lightweight title. The belt was originally held by Hermes Franca but he decided to vacate it when he recently signed a new four-fight deal with the UFC.
Doug “The Rhino” Marshall will battle Chute Boxe USA’s Jorge Oliveira for the vacant WEC light heavyweight title. Oliveira became a WEC fighter when the Zuffa purchased the contracts of the WFA. Zuffa decided they’d showcase Oliveira in the newly acquired WEC.
Urijah Faber will defend his WEC featherweight title against PRIDE veteran Joe Pearson. Faber much like MuCullough, Cope and Oliveira was acquired when Zuffa purchased the WFA. Faber was sent to the WEC because he fights at 145 lbs and the UFC doesn’t currently have a featherweight division. Faber’s only MMA loss came to the hands of UFC veteran Tyson Griffin at Gladiator Challenge 42.
Since acquiring the WEC, Zuffa has been working hard to put on a solid first show which will showcase some of their lightweight talent. WEC event’s are also expected to appear on Versus.
MMAWeekly and Sherdog both now have articles up which are reporting that Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic has signed in the UFC. The announcement will be made this Saturday at UFC 66: Liddell vs. Ortiz II. Cro Cop’s first fight is expected to come at UFC 67 against Eddie Sanchez.
Along with the signing of Mirko Cro Cop, it has been announced and PRIDE and K-1 veteran Heath Herring has signed a five-fight deal with the UFC which will see him make his debut January 25th against Jake O’Brien. Herring was one of the many contracts acquired when the UFC bought out the WFA.
InsideFighting is reporting that Hermes Franca will make his return to the octagon against Spencer Fisher on January 25th at the UFC Fight Night in Miami, Florida. Nothing has been confirmed but it is expected that the winner will become the number one contender in the lightweight division. Franca’s manager, Joe Mullings said, ““Nothing is guaranteed but the direction of conversation has been that either Fisher or Franca will likely be in line for a shot at (UFC lightweight champion) Sean (Sherk).”
Things are starting to come together with the UFC and HBO, as I posted yesterday, Larry Merchant confirmed that the UFC would appear on the network when he said “People look at it (UFC) as real wrestling. And next year HBO and Showtime, they both will test the waters and see if this works. I don’t know what Showtime is doing, but we’ll do four and see how it goes.”
MMAWeekly is reporting that various independent sources have confirmed that WEC will no renew their deal with HDNet but rather they will sign a deal with Versus. The deal calls for six shows to be televised next year including three live shows and three on tape delay. The first Zuffa-owned WEC event will take place January 20th as Kit Cope and Rob McCullough will be headlining the card. It is still unknown whether or not this event will be included in the television deal. Both McCullough and Cope’s contracts were acquired when the UFC purchased the WFA.