Welterweight

Ellenberger vs. Kampmann to Headline “TUF 15” Finale in Las Vegas

Jake Ellenberger. Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC.

A pivotal welterweight bout between heavy-handed title contenders Jake Ellenberger and Martin Kampmann has been tapped to headline The Ultimate Fighter 15 Finale, which is slated for June 1 in Las Vegas and will air live on FX.

The UFC announced today that the bout will be a five-round affair. The winner will likely be the next in line to face the winner of Carlos Condit and Georges St. Pierre's expected showdown at the end of the year.

The show will also feature the lightweight finals of the ongoing "TUF 15" season as well as likely apperances from a handful of cast members.

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UFC Announces Canadian Lineup for 2012; Aldo and GSP in Promotional Plans

Jose Aldo. Photo by Ken Pishna/MMA Weekly.

The UFC today announced a trio of events on Canadian soil for this year, starting off with the promotion's first-ever event in Calgary, Alberta in July and followed by returns to Montreal and Toronto in September and November respectively.

Jose Aldo's latest featherweight title defense will headline UFC 149 on July 21 at the Scotiabank Saddledome. An opponent for Aldo has yet to be announced. In addition, the UFC will return to Toronto, Ontario for UFC 152 on September 22, but a venue has not yet been chosen for the event.

Longtime UFC welterweight king Georges St. Pierre is also targeting a potential return to action at UFC 154 in his hometown of Montreal, Quebec on November 17 at the Bell Centre, which will hang on the success of his rehab more than anything else.

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Matt Hughes Discusses Future in Fighting, Decision on Retirement

Former longtime UFC welterweight champion Matt Hughes joined the panel on Tuesday's episode of "UFC Tonight" on FUEL TV to discuss his future with the UFC as well as his pending decision to fight one more time and his thoughts on a potential opponent as well.

NSAC Temporarily Suspends Nick Diaz

Nick Diaz. Photo by Esther Lin/Strikeforce.

The Nevada State Athletic Commission has temporarily suspended UFC welterweight Nick Diaz for his positive test for marijuana following his unanimous decision defeat to Carlos Condit at UFC 143 on February 4.

Commission officials met today to levy a temporary ban on Diaz until after a disciplinary hearing this spring, most likely in April, at which then the NSAC will decide whether or not Diaz will face a one-year suspension for a second offense. Diaz also tested positive for marijuana following his upset of Takanori Gomi in February 2007. The fight was later ruled a no-contest and Diaz was fined and suspended for six months.

Diaz is currently registered as a medicinal marijuana user in the state of California. It is unknown whether or not that status could come into play at the disciplinary hearing nor whether or not the NSAC would be willing to grant him a future exemption because of it.

At the moment, Diaz's future in fighting is in limbo regardless of the commission's decision. The 28-year-old announced that he was finished with the sport moments after the decision on his fight with Condit was announced and members of his camp have said that they aren't sure whether or not Diaz will change his mind.

Dan Hardy vs. Duane Ludwig Set for UFC 146 in Las Vegas

Dan Hardy. From uncagedphotographer on Flickr.

A matchup against willing strikers Dan Hardy and Duane "Bang" Ludwig has been signed for UFC 146, which is slated to take place on May 26 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

UFC officials announced the bout earlier today. The matchup will likely be part of the event's televised pay-per-view main card. It is expected to be headlined by Junior dos Santos' first heavyweight title defense against Alistair Overeem.

Hardy will look to snap a four-fight losing streak, which features a failed title bid against Georges St. Pierre as well as defeats at the hands of Carlos Condit, Anthony Johnson and Chris Lytle in his most recent fight. Ludwig had a two-fight win streak ended against Josh Neer, who put Ludwig to sleep with a guillotine choke at UFC on FX 1 last month.

Nate Marquardt Joins Strikeforce Ranks

Nate Marquardt. Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC.

Almost a year after being released by the UFC after a pre-fight medical fiasco, former middleweight title challenger is headed back to Zuffa, this time to compete as a welterweight under the Strikeforce banner.

The signing was announced on last night's edition of "UFC Tonight" on FUEL TV. While a date for his return has not been yet, Marquardt has reportedly verbally agreed to face Tyron Woodley in a fight that could be for Strikeforce's vacant welterweight belt.

Marquardt was released from the UFC after failing to gain medical clearance prior to UFC on Versus 4. The Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission stated that Marquardt's pre-fight testosterone levels were too high to allow him to compete. In the following weeks, Marquardt and his camp revealed that he was approved for hormone-replacement therapy, but was unable to get his levels down to an allowable amount before his scheduled fight with Rick Story.

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The Daily Recap: Volkmann-Sass Set for UFC 146, UFC 144 on Free TV in Japan & More

Jacob Volkmann. Photo courtesy of FOX Sports.

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.

A lightweight bout between outspoken wrestler Jacob Volkmann and submission artist Paul Sass has been booked for UFC 146 on May 26 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. Volkmann has won five straight UFC fights, his most recent a unanimous decision over Efrain Escudero in December. Sass last submitted Michael Johnson with a heel hook at UFC on Versus 6 in October. He has won eight of his twelve pro fights by triangle choke. [UFC.com]

Just a handful of days before UFC 144, the organization has struck a deal with TV Tokyo to air a compressed, tape-delay version of the event on network television in Japan. TV Tokyo is reportedly avaiable in 32 million households. The last UFC event to air on the channel was UFC Fight Night 21 in March 2010, which saw Takanori Gomi fall to Kenny Florian. [Sherdog]

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Jake Ellenberger: I Don’t Think Carlos Condit Wants a Rematch

Carlos Condit. Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC.

He's only days out from an exciting decision win over Diego Sancez, but Jake Ellenberger's crusade for a rematch against current UFC interim welterweight champion Carlos Condit is continuing.

Condit narrowly escaped with a split decision in their first meeting, and Ellenberger is determined for a second crack at the former WEC title holder. Ellenberger says that he doesn't blame Condit and his camp for waiting for a unification bout with Georges St. Pierre, but he also wants them to keep in mind that GSP's recovery could take longer than expected:

“I think the fans do want it, but at the same time, I don’t know if that’s what the UFC wants or not,” Ellenberger told the Sherdog Radio Network’s “Beatdown” show. “I really don’t. If it was up to me, then yeah, we’d probably be fighting in May or June, but I don’t know if that’s what the UFC wants. I think they kind of still put it in Condit’s hands, but I know Carlos. I know his manager, and I know they don’t want that fight. But again, if I put myself in their shoes, I don’t blame them.”

...

“It’s not even necessarily a personal thing,” he said. ”Carlos right now has the belt, and that’s where I want to be. He’s a fantastic fighter and he’s in the position he’s in for a reason. I was hoping I could get another rematch with Condit, but whether he fights again is going to be up to him. … I wouldn’t blame him if he wants to wait. That’s just the reality of it, but in my opinion, I sure hope I get that fight.”

St. Pierre claims that his recovery is well ahead of schedule and he could return to action before his original target date of November. Still, setbacks occur often and without notice. Even though he owns a win over him, Ellenberger is a dangerous fight for Condit. The opening round of their first clash showed that.

If I were Condit, I would sit on the sidelines and wait for GSP, but if a setback occurs and his return is pushed back until late 2012/early 2013, I would then consider a rematch with Ellenberger to prevent ring rust.

The Daily Recap: Mayhem-Dollaway at UFC 146, DEEP 57 Results & More

Jason "Mayhem" Miller. Photo courtesy of FEG.

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.

Jason "Mayhem" Miller will apparently be getting another chance in the UFC after all. Miller has revealed that he will face C.B. Dollaway at UFC 146, which is tentatively scheduled for May 26 in Las Vegas, Nevada. "Mayhem" returned to the UFC this past December, falling to fellow "TUF 14" coach Michael Bisping via third-round TKO. Dollaway has his last two bouts, stoppages at the hands of Jared Hamman and Mark Munoz respectively. [MMA Weekly]

DEEP lightweight champ Mizuto Hirota made a successful title defense against Seichi Ikemoto in the featured attraction of DEEP's "57 Impact" event in Tokyo, Japan on Saturday, winning a three-round unanimous decision. Other notable results from the card saw Kazunori Yokota defeat Hideki Kadowaki by decision, Yoshiro Media submit Takafumi Otsuka in the second round, Daisuke Nakamura hand Akihiro Gono his fifth loss in eight fights and Amanda Lucas announce her cut down to 145 lbs following her submission of Yumiko Hotta. [Sherdog]

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GSP Discusses Diaz-Condit, Rehab and Recovery

In a recent interview with Jon Anik on the UFC's "Ultimate Insider" show, welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre gives his thoughts on Carlos Condit's win over Nick Diaz for the interim title. He also discusses his rehab following surgery to repair his torn ACL, how he is feeling and what his recovery is like among other things.

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